2ND LEAD

Case filed to block US vote on IMF loan to Sri Lanka

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 31 March 2009, 04:00 GMT]
Tamils Against Genocide (TAG), a US-based activist group, filed a complaint against Secretary of the US Treasury, Timothy Geithner, and the US Executive Director at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Meg Lundsager, in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to obtain a "declaratory judgment that a failure of the United States to oppose Sri Lanka’s pending $1.9 billion IMF loan application would constitute a violation of 22 U.S.C. 262d," Monday at 6:00 p.m. Filing can be accessed by refering to Docket No: 09-0598, according to Bruce Fein, counsel for TAG.

Copies of the complaint will be delivered to the Department of Justice, Department of the Treasury, and the State Department Tuesday (Service of Process), according to TAG's attorney.

The 84-page complaint asserts that "[d]efendants, sitting on the Board of Governors and Executive Committee of the IMF, respectively, are obliged by statute, 22 U.S.C. 262d, to vote against any loan application submitted by a member country with a pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights."

"Plaintiff reasonably apprehends that Defendants might for non-statutory reasons decide not to oppose Sri Lanka’s request for a $1.9 billion balance of payments IMF loan in violation of section 262d. If Plaintiff waited to sue Defendants for allegedly violating section 262d in failing to oppose Sri Lanka’s $1.9 billion IMF loan application until after the loan had been granted, there would then be no practical legal remedy for the violation," the Complaint notes.

The Complaint details Sri Lanka's pattern of gross violation of internationally recognized human rights under the following categories:
  • Extra-judicial killings and disappearances,
  • War Crimes in Violation of the Hague and Geneva Conventions: Shelling and Bombarding Civilians,
  • Rape,
  • Cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment,
  • Prolonged detention without charges,
  • Arbitrary arrests and national identity cards and limits of freedom of movement,
  • Starvation and denial of medical care,
  • Denial of free speech and press,
  • Denial of Investigations by International Organizations: Media Blackout,
  • Political Repression,
  • Torture
Transcripts of interviews of Sri Lanka's Defense Secretary, Gotabaya Rajapakse with BBC, Australia's SBS, UK's Sky TV are included as part of the evidence.

Six affidavits from TAG members whose relatives are caught in the war are also provided as additional exhibits to establish TAG's standing to file the law suit.


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