Arrow Left Arrow Right Camera icon set icon set Ellipsis icon set Facebook Favorite Globe Hamburger List Mail Map Marker Map Microphone Minus PDF Play Print RSS Search Share Trash Twitter Video Camera Youtube

Sri Lanka

CrisisWatch Sri Lanka

Unchanged Situation

Parliament again postponed debate on Constitutional Assembly steering committee report that would outline proposed new constitution, now scheduled 23 Feb. Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) ministers continued to state positions including on devolution at odds with those of United National Party (UNP), President Sirisena and leadership of Tamil National Alliance (TNA). SLFP ministers also announced support for Sirisena to run for second term in 2020, despite his repeated claims he will serve only one term. Consultations Task Force (CTF), charged with national consultations on reconciliation and transitional justice, 3 Jan released 700-page report based on over 7,000 submissions from across island, with recommendations for all four promised transitional justice “mechanisms”: office of missing persons, office of reparations, truth commission and special court. Neither president nor PM attended launch. Cabinet spokesperson 4 Jan rejected CTF recommendation to include at least one foreign judge on each special court trial; justice minister 5 Jan stated he had “no confidence” in report, rejecting it as work of NGOs. In 11 Jan speech in London, FM Mangala Samaraweera announced govt’s intention to negotiate “technical rollover” resolution at March UN Human Rights Council (HRC), which would extend terms of current resolution for additional period; also announced law to establish “truth seeking commission” would be finalised in time to be presented to HRC. European Commission 11 Jan announced support for renewal of GSP+ trade benefits to Sri Lanka; stressed need for Sri Lanka to demonstrate further progress on implementing 27 human rights conventions, particularly need to make anti-terrorism legislation consistent with International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Cabinet 10 Jan reportedly approved revised draft of proposed Counter Terrorism Act, designed to replace Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA); reportedly removes several repressive clauses but leaves definition of terrorism broad. UN Special Rapporteur on Torture released report 23 Jan noting “total impunity” and a “culture of torture” in the police and recommending govt repeal PTA and review draft legislation to replace it.

Continue reading

Reports & Briefings

In The News

26 Jan 2017
China sold a lot of weapons and lent a lot of money to Sri Lanka and remained a useful ally even in the Human Rights Council, all through the end of the war. Quartz

Alan Keenan

Senior Analyst, Sri Lanka
7 Dec 2016
There was always a doubt about the commitment of the [Sri Lankan] president and prime minister. As time goes on, those doubts have grown. The New York Times

Alan Keenan

Senior Analyst, Sri Lanka
1 Sep 2016
With the UN’s help, Sri Lanka could yet build a state that respects the rule of law and protects the rights of all its citizens. Inside Story

Alan Keenan

Senior Analyst, Sri Lanka

Latest Updates

Op-Ed / Asia

Sri Lanka’s Transition to Nowhere

The bloom is off two years of hope that the rule of law can be restored for all and that a 60-year failure to grant Tamils a fair share of power, in the Sinhala majority island, can be rectified.

 

 

Originally published in The Diplomat Magazine

Op-Ed / Asia

Unfinished Business in Sri Lanka

Originally published in Inside Story

Op-Ed / Asia

Time to seize the moment in Sri Lanka

Originally published in Inside Story

Our People

Alan Keenan

Senior Analyst, Sri Lanka
akeenan23