World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


A Black Mark in the Commonwealth's History

A Black Mark in the Commonwealth's History

30 October, 2011

The Commonwealth has decided not to reassess Sri Lanka’s suitability to host the next Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 2013. This decision runs contrary to the association’s fundamental values of human rights and democracy, and has pushed the Commonwealth to the lowest point in its history.

In 2009, Commonwealth Heads of Governments deferred Sri Lanka’s proposal to host CHOGM 2011 for two years. Little has changed since then. Instead, human rights concerns have increased significantly and the Sri Lankan regime’s response has been denial and defiance rather than genuine efforts at accountability and recompense.

An Expert Panel appointed by the UN Secretary-General in June 2009 called for independent international investigations after it found credible allegations of humanitarian law violations and egregious war crimes - domestic efforts to investigate them were considered weak and inadequate.

The Commonwealth, however, has chosen to turn a blind eye to the widely publicised allegations. The few Commonwealth member states that have expressed some concern have been resolutely opposed by strong voices that prefer to paper over the serious situation. By allowing Sri Lanka to confidently go on to host CHOGM 2013, and subsequently become chair of the association, the Commonwealth has clearly indicated its future direction, squandering the Perth CHOGM which once held so much potential. It has now openly proclaimed that it is no longer capable of landmark human rights stances, as demonstrated by its historic activism against Apartheid.

A Commonwealth position that legitimises the human rights situation in Sri Lanka may in the very near future delegitimise the Commonwealth fatally and forever.

Without a strong commitment to human rights, the Commonwealth cannot be of any relevance to its two billion people. The Commonwealth’s stance on Sri Lanka in the run up to CHOGM 2013 will indicate whether there is any chance that the organisation can salvage itself from this substantial tear in its moral fabric. If CHOGM 2013 takes place in Sri Lanka without credible justice and accountability, it will do irretrievable damage to the Commonwealth’s raison d’etre its fundamental values.

Follow CHRI on Twitter: http://twitter.com/chri_INT*
Join CHRI on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/chridelhi*
Join South Asian Right to Information Advocates Network (SARTIAN): http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sartianetwork/

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Breaking: Israel Shelling Beit Hanoun Hospital

The Israeli military have started to shell and shoot at Beit Hanoun hospital. There are still 61 medical staff and civilians, three patients and two International Solidarity Movement volunteers trapped inside. More>>

UN: Urgent Action To End Female Genital Mutilation UN: Urgent Action To End Female Genital Mutilation

New UN data shows need for urgent action to end female genital mutilation, child marriage More>>

World News: SRI LANKA: Justice Denied To Two Child Victims Of Rape
There have been reports of an alleged abduction and rape of an eleven-year-old girl by a group of Navy officers, and of another nine-year-old girl treated in a similar manner. More>>

‘Global Epidemic’ Of Anti-Semitism NGO Urges UN To Condemn ‘global Epidemic’ Of Anti-Semitism

French riot police officers face rioters in Sarcelles, a suburb north of Paris, on July 20, 2014. More>>


IDF Falsifies Photograph To Justify Bombing El-Wafa Hospital IDF Falsifies Photograph To Justify Bombing El-Wafa Hospital

On the 21st July at 2:17 PM, the IDF spokesperson released an image on twitter showing an aerial picture of a building marked as ‘Al-Wafa’ hospital. In the image there is a red circle, which they designated as the location from which a M75 rocket was ... More>>

MH17: Black Boxes Recovered by Malaysian Government

'Following the agreement Prime Minister Najib Razak brokered with rebel leaders, Malaysia has taken custody of flight MH17's black boxes. As the Prime Minister said, they will be passed to the international investigation team for analysis. More>>

ALSO:


Gaza Update On 15th Day Of The Israeli Offensive

Dozens of Palestinian Civilians Killed or Wounded as Israeli Forces Attack Apartment Buildings, Mosques, Hospitals and Schools; White Phosphorous Bombs and Flechette Shells Fired by Israeli Forces in Border Areas... More>>

Al Jazeera: Egypt Verdict Defies Logic And Any Semblance Of Justice

Following today’s verdict in Cairo, Al Jazeera English managing director Al Anstey said: “Today three colleagues and friends were sentenced, and will continue behind bars for doing a brilliant job of being great journalists. More>>


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news