No focus on Tamil genocide, geopolitics gets played out in Geneva in favour of QUAD formation

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 23 March 2021, 12:41 GMT]
Eezham Tamils wanted UN-sanctioned criminal investigations to focus on the crime of genocide through ICC and IIIM. But, the UK-led Core Group on Sri Lanka did not deliver it. Instead, the group chose to consolidate the March 2014 mandate-based evidence collection mechanism inside the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) through the UN Human Rights Council's resolution, which passed voting on Tuesday. The move has secured necessary space and time for the US-led Indo-Pacific geopolitical negotiations with the SL State through India and Japan, two of the QUAD countries that abstained from the voting for the same reason. China and Pakistan, which opposed the resolution called for a vote and nine other countries joined them voting against the resolution: Bangladesh, Bolivia, Cuba, Eritrea, Philippines, Russia, Somalia, Uzbekistan and Venezuela.

India chose to read a statement before the vote stating that its approach was based on two fundamental considerations: One was the support to the ‘Tamils of Sri Lanka’ for equality, justice, dignity and peace. The other was ensuring unity, stability and the territorial integrity of ‘Sri Lanka’.

“We have always believed that these two goals are mutually supportive and Sri Lanka's progress is best assured by simultaneously addressing both objectives,” the statement said.

“India supports the call by the international community for the Government of Sri Lanka to fulfil its commitments on the devolution of political authority, including through the early holding of elections for Provincial Councils and to ensure that all Provincial Councils are able to operate effectively, in accordance with the 13th amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution,” the statement delivered by Pawankumar Badhe said.

Along with India, thirteen other countries abstained from voting: Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gabon, Indonesia, Japan, Libya, Mauritania, Namibia, Nepal, Senegal, Sudan and Togo.

Vote




Apart from the three Core Group Members, the UK, Germany and Malawi who tabled the resolution, nineteen other countries voted in favour of the resolution. The resolution was co-sponsored by eleven countries, including those who were not members in the current Council.

The 22 countries that voted in favour of the resolution were: Argentina, Armenia, Austria, Bahamas, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cote D'ivoire, Czech Republic, Denmark, Fiji, France, Germany, Italy, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, South Korea, Ukraine, UK and Uruguay.

The resolution move has given rise to a total requirement of almost US $2.9 million for the provision of one-time resources, most of the costs to be spent as salaries for thirteen staff members of the OHCHR.

The required staff are supposed to strengthen OHCHR capacity to collect, consolidate, analyse as well as preserve information and evidence.

The office is also tasked to develop possible strategies for “future accountability processes for gross violations of human rights or serious violations of international humanitarian law,” as well as to advocate for victims and survivors, and to support relevant judicial and other proceedings, including in the Member States with competent jurisdiction.

The crime of genocide would not be addressed in this OHCHR office-managed process which is based on the weak mandate, from 2014 which produced the office-managed OISL reporting in 2015.

OHCHR requests more than USD 2.8 million in financial assistance for 2021 and 2022 for Sri Lanka res
OHCHR requests more than USD 2.8 million in financial assistance for 2021 and 2022 for Sri Lanka resolution




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