Mar 15, Houston: Expatriate Sri Lankan community in Houston, Texas held a demonstration to denounce the recent measures taken by the United States government against Sri Lanka.
A group called Sri Lankan Americans for Unity and Prosperity Wednesday held a protest rally in front of the State Department Building in Houston, Texas against the US resolutions.
Carrying placards over 100 Sri Lankans from the Houston area stood near the federal building to voice their opposition to ongoing aggressive stand by the US against Sri Lanka.
The demonstrators held placards that told the US not to punish Sri Lanka for eradicating terrorism and not to lose credibility by bowing down to terrorists.
The US along with UK, Mauritius, Macedonia and Montenegro tabled a resolution at the ongoing United Nations Human Rights Council session on March 03 calling for an international investigation into the alleged war crimes committed by the both sides of the armed conflict in Sri Lanka.
In addition Republican Senator of North Carolina Richard Burr introduced the resolution S. RES. 348 in the US Senate on February 6. The resolution co-sponsored by Senators Robert Casey, Patrick Leahy, Sherrod Brown, Barbara Boxer and John Cornyn calls on the US and the international community to establish an independent international accountability mechanism to evaluate reports of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and other human rights violations committed by both sides during and after the war in Sri Lanka.
However, another bipartisan resolution, S. Res. 364, expressing support for the internal rebuilding, resettlement, and reconciliation within Sri Lanka that are necessary to ensure a lasting peace was submitted to the Committee on Foreign Relations by Senator James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) along with 10 other senators on February 27.
Sri Lankan Americans in Houston protested the resolutions against Sri Lanka during the rally and urged US to withdraw them while supporting the S. Res 364.
Further, the demonstrators vowed to take further actions to safeguard sovereignty of Sri Lanka. The organizers reported that similar rallies are planned in a number of major cities in the US.
During the event, the organizing committee handed over a signed petition addressed to US Secretary of State, John Kerry requesting the United States to honor Sri Lanka's political autonomy, by respecting Sri Lanka's own reconciliation process.
The committee members also met with Allen Greenberg, Regional Director of the US State Department and detailed the tremendous progress achieved by Sri Lanka in the affected areas in regard to socio-economic development.