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* President condemns attempts to bring a resolution against Sri Lanka at the UNHRC
Tue, Feb 4, 2014, 12:58 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 04, Colombo: Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa today condemned the attempts to bring another resolution against Sri Lanka at the United Nations Human Rights Council session in Geneva next month.

Addressing the Nation at the 66th Independence Day celebrations in Kegalle today, the President said the international forces are attempting to take away freedom experienced by Tamils in the North after the government ended the terrorism and brought peace.

Recalling that the Tamil Tiger terrorist group LTTE forcibly took away children to fight the war with the government, the President said that every powerful country should realize the difficulty in defeating terrorism and not to forget the grave human rights violations committed by the LTTE.

The United States has said that it will bring a third resolution on Sri Lanka as a follow up to the earlier resolutions adopted by the UNHRC since they are not happy with Sri Lanka's slow pace of progress in addressing the accountability and achieving reconciliation.

However, the President said the resolution will be a grave crime against peace and attempts to level war crime charges against Sri Lanka in Geneva is the triumph of those who are not in favor of peace.

"I see the attempts level charges of war crimes against us in Geneva today as the triumph of those who are not in favor of peace. This seeks to drive fear into people and nations committed to peace and working to safeguard a country's independence and freedom. These are not founded on peace, fair play or justice."

"People in my country too should have the right to live freely in this country. Saving our peace and unity is our responsibility and not of any others," the President said adding that revenge has never been a part of Sri Lanka's culture.

He reiterated that under whatever circumstance, Sri Lanka will not be frightened to deprive the country of the freedom the people won.

The President recalled that the LTTE killed several people including Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi but with the defeat of the rebels in May 2009 even the Tamils in the North are experiencing true freedom.

"We have to recall the bitter memories of the past when baseless allegations are leveled against us," he said.

In a separate Independence Day message President Rajapaksa restated the government's commitment to safeguard the freedom and rights of Sri Lanka's people, and decide on a future free of dictates from the re-emerging forces of colonialism.

"I share your dream to strengthen the Sri Lankan nation under a single flag in a united country. Achieving this requires hard work, with diligence and honesty of purpose. It calls for patriotism that transcends the barriers of geography and community, with reconciliation in a rich unity of purpose," the President said in his message.

Prime Minister D. M. Jayaratne, minsters, foreign diplomats, parliamentarians and religious leaders attended the 66th Independence Day celebrations held in the Kegalle City.

(Photos by Sudath Silva)

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