New York media alerts UN posting of 'War Criminal'
[TamilNet, Sunday, 21 November 2010, 18:47 GMT]
"A suspected war criminal who allegedly played a key role in the slaughter of 40,000 civilians in Sri Lanka has landed a cushy job at the United Nations -- with full diplomatic immunity," said New York Post in the Sunday Edition, adding "Human-rights groups are outraged that Shavendra Silva, 46, a top ex-military commander, was named Sri Lanka's deputy permanent UN representative in August, after which he moved to New York." Innercity Press, referring to NY Post's story, pointed out to ICP's August 25th report where ICP asked the UN spokesperson that if the alleged killings by Mr Silva during the final stages of the war was true, whether the UN Secretary General has the discretion to reject Mr Silva. ICP said the question is no longer a hypothetical and that Ban Ki Moon did nothing.
Shavendra Silva, retired Army General
"Silva also stands accused of mowing down a group of separatist political leaders who agreed to surrender and were waving white flags when they were shot," the article said, and quoted an investigator familiar with Silva, who last year oversaw the final months of a brutal 26-year civil war, as saying "It's a slap in the face."
"Thousands were killed or starved. There were massive human-rights violations and he's the No. 1 suspect," said the investigator, a human-rights group expert who asked not to be identified.
Silva claims 11,000 friends on Facebook. The barrel-chested former major general also maintains his own site, shavendrasilva.com, filled with photos of himself in combat garb and a list of his battlefield successes, according to NYP.
He works from an office at the Sri Lankan mission on Third Avenue,th NYP article said.
Shavendra Silva's 58th division was one of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) divisions that had been the longest embedded division in prosecuting the final war. Starting in September 2007 in Silavaturai in the western coast, Silva's division was instrumental in displacing civilians from the western shores to the eastern killing fields in Mullaitivu in Jan 2009, according timeline published in Sri Lanka Government controlled Daily News.
Professor Francis Boyle, an expert in International Law, commenting on the reported UN job said earlier, "the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) is trying to sanitize and immunize their genocidaires/war criminals and thus regularize it all."
Shavendra Silva's appointment follows two similar appointments of alleged war-criminals, Major General Jagath Dias as a diplomat to Germany, and the Chief of Staff of Sri Lanka’s forces during the war, Donald Perera, as Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Israel.