Sept 03, Colombo: The Sri Lankan government says that the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Navanetham (Navi) Pillay who recently concluded a seven day visit to Sri Lanka should give an unbiased and impartial report as required.
Presidential envoy for human rights, Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said Pillay's visit would not have a negative outcome on Sri Lanka, if her view is objective and her report is unbiased and impartial.
He said that these are essential facets of the holder of the Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights.
"As far back as 1993 when the UN General Assembly created the post by resolution 48/141, it was decided by the community of nations that the person appointed should: 'Be a person of high moral standing and personal integrity and shall possess expertise, including in the field of human rights, and the general knowledge and understanding of diverse cultures necessary for impartial, objective, non-selective and effective performance of the duties of the High Commissioner'," Samarasinghe has said.
During her press conference in Colombo at the conclusion of her week-long visit to the island on a fact-finding mission, Pillay said she will provide an oral update to the Human Rights Council in Geneva in late September, and a full written report in March next year on her visit.
Minister Samarasinghe said if the reports made to the Council falls short of the expected standards, the Sri Lankan government will make every effort to set the record straight.
"Of course we do not expect a report that does not point out the challenges we face and the work that remains to be done to strengthen the promotion and protection of human rights," the Minister remarked.
He said the government is working on these areas having assessed and acknowledged "our strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for further improvement."
"All that we ask is for a report devoid of subjectivity and not supportive of a political agenda extraneous to the promotion and protection of human rights," the Minister emphasized.