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Cablegate: Iigep Informs Donors It Is Leaving in March

VZCZCXRO9716
OO RUEHBI RUEHLMC
DE RUEHLM #1651 3460947
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 120947Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY COLOMBO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 7329
INFO RUEHKA/AMEMBASSY DHAKA PRIORITY 0580
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD PRIORITY 7567
RUEHKT/AMEMBASSY KATHMANDU PRIORITY 5737
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 4170
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI PRIORITY 1634
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO PRIORITY 4185
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 3280
RUEHCG/AMCONSUL CHENNAI PRIORITY 8168
RUEHBI/AMCONSUL MUMBAI PRIORITY 5743
RUEHON/AMCONSUL TORONTO PRIORITY 0474
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 2489
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY
RUEHLMC/MILLENNIUM CHALLENGE CORPORATION PRIORITY

UNCLAS COLOMBO 001651

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR SCA/INS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM MOPS PTER CE
SUBJECT: IIGEP INFORMS DONORS IT IS LEAVING IN MARCH

REF: COLOMBO 1582

1. (SBU) As reported reftel, the International Independent
Group of Eminent Persons (IIGEP) has decided to end its work
in Sri Lanka by March 2008. IIGEP informed the Government of
Sri Lanka of this on December 7. Ambassador received the
following letter dated December 4 from IIGEP.

BEGIN MESSAGE TEXT

Our Ref: IIGEP/US/12-06

Your Excellency,

Members of the IIGEP met in Colombo in November 2007 to
assess the work of the Commission of Inquiry, the role of the
Government in facilitating its work, as well as the
contribution of the IIGEP to the process. In this context,
Members of the IIGEP also had an informative meeting with
representatives of donor countries on 14 November 2007. After
careful deliberation, the IIGEP is of the opinion that it is
nearing the end of its useful work. By the end of March 2008,
after one year of work, the IIGEP will be at the point of
having achieved all that is possible to accomplish within its
mandate.

The Members of the IIGEP addressed H.E the President of Sri
Lanka and the Commission of Inquiry on a number of crucial
issues which, in our assessment, demonstrate that the
structure and operations of the Commission of Inquiry lack
transparency and fall short of international norms and
standards. The IIGEP has offered observations directed at (1)
factors undermining the independence of the Commission of
Inquiry, (2) shortcomings in the investigations and
inquiries, (3) inadequate disclosure of information to the
Commission by State bodies, and (4) the absence of effective
witness protection. The IIGEP has not observed any indication
that our recommended corrective actions have been implemented
by the Government or the Commission.

It is therefore, the intention of the Members of the IIGEP to
conclude our mandate at the end of March 2008 and to then
submit to H.E the President a Final Report, in accordance
with H.E. the President's Letters of Invitation to the
Members of the IIGEP.

Once the Final Report is submitted to H.E. the President, the
IIGEP will be required to finalize its operation in Sri Lanka
with due consideration to all the relevant legal, logistical
and administrative issues. The Coordinator of the IIGEP
Secretariat, Mr. Cees Hindriks, will, as soon as possible and

SIPDIS
on a continual basis, pursue the details of the arrangements
for the IIGEP's withdrawal in greater depth with your Office
and the Head of Mission 10M.

On behalf of all the Eminent Persons,
Yours sincerely,
/s/
P.N. Bhagwati Chairman

cc. Head of Mission I0M
BLAKE

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