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* Sri Lanka military rejects new war crime allegations report
Thu, Feb 6, 2014, 02:36 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Feb 06, Colombo: Sri Lanka military today flatly rejected a new report released by an Australian NGO alleging that Sri Lanka forces committed a majority of war crimes and claiming that there is new evidence to prove the allegations.

The Public Interest Advocacy Centre in a report released to media yesterday accused the country's security forces of committing the majority of the alleged war crimes during the final months of the country's civil war in 2009.

"The latest report of alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka issued by a so called expert panel of a so called 'Public Interest Advocacy Centre Limited' comprising of infamous former UN spokesman in Sri Lanka Gordon Weiss is a ploy to mislead the member countries in the UN Human Rights Council," the Army spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said making a statement to the state-run Daily News.

The PIAC report said the security forces deliberately shelled the civilians and the soldiers destroyed the evidence of killing after the war ended in May 2009.

Brigadier Wanigasuriya has said the report contained nothing new except the allegations that the LTTE Diaspora and its supporters have been making for the last five years.

He said the military forces have never been hesitant to take disciplinary action against any soldier or officer, if such incidents are reported to the military with credible evidence and the army is always willing to inquire into any allegation leveled against the soldiers or officers, whenever they are made backed by evidence.

"Discipline in the military is maintained at the highest level. We are the first to take action against army personnel or officers, if there are allegations of human rights violations at the hands of the Sri Lanka forces," he said.

Brigadier Wanigasuriya questioned the credibility of this expert panel where the former UN spokesman Gordon Weiss was involved. He said that this project called International Crimes Evidence Project was conducted by the Public Interest Advocacy Centre in Australia with a hidden agenda in mind in the run up to the UN Human Rights Council session in Geneva.

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