Oct 17, Colombo: The 27-year conflict with a terrorist group was a challenge to Sri Lanka's democracy and the rule of law and countries emerging from decades of conflict must be given the much needed time and space to engage in restorative process, Sri Lanka's Justice Minister Rauf Hakeem told the UN recently.
Delivering a statement at the 6th Committee of the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly last week, Minister Hakeem said the ideas of the Rule of Law cannot be enforced from the outside or confirm to an external prescription that ignores domestic realities.
"Countries like Sri Lanka need support to strengthen their domestic institutions. Judgementative international interventions are counterproductive," the Minister noted.
Speaking of terrorism, Hakeem said that increasingly, regional bodies have also begun to play an important role in addressing the growing problem of transnational organized crime and terrorism which threaten the international order.
He said, piracy, drug trafficking and human smuggling have become associated with terrorism and violent crime and international organized crime is now a major funding source of terrorism and is becoming a critical economic and social destabilizing factor.
However, the "simple approach of killing individuals, without addressing the key underlying factors will only create more willing volunteers for the terrorist cause," the Minister pointed out.
Long-term solutions to transnational organized crime, terrorism and piracy will need to focus on the delivery of basic services by justice and security institutions, not forgetting relevant economic and social factors, Hakeem underscored.
He said strengthening the Rule of Law is essential not just to maintain peace and good order as it is traditionally understood, but also to enable sustained economic progress and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.
"In maintaining a balance between sustainable economic progress, and environmental sustainability, the rule of law can play an important role, both at national and international levels," the Sri Lankan Minister said.