Mar 26, Colombo: While Sri Lanka is determinedly committed to achieve reconciliation and promote human rights, its transitional justice processes will be firmly grounded in the Constitution and the domestic legal framework, the Foreign Affairs Minister Tilak Marapana said.
The Foreign Minister, who just returned from Geneva representing Sri Lanka at the 40th session of the UN Human Right Council, where Sri Lanka co-sponsored the resolution 40/L.1, said Sri Lanka was "able to recalibrate the dynamics of our engagement through our response to the OHCHR Report and co-sponsorship of the Resolution this year."
Delivering a statement at the committee stage debate on the Appropriations Bill 2019 for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Minister Marapana said he explained the spirit in which Sri Lanka co-sponsored the resolution this year, as it did twice previously.
"We have no illusions on the political, legal and social barriers that have to be surmounted. Sri Lanka's co-sponsorship of this year's Resolution assures to all stakeholders, the Sri Lankan society at large, and to our interlocutors outside the country, that we will continue to move forward within the stated parameters, with a view to the ensure eventual closure of this issue.
He said given the current domestic and external developments, managing Sri Lanka's foreign relations effectively is of paramount importance in order to protect and promote the interests of the Sri Lankan State and the welfare and advancement of the country's people here and abroad.
The Foreign Minister's full statement to the parliament today comprehensively addresses the progress made by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the bilateral, regional, multilateral and functional spheres and also provides information on new initiatives undertaken to operationalize the re-orientation of Sri Lanka's foreign policy.
In conclusion, Minister Marapana said the Ministry will continue to conduct its foreign relations in an independent, forthright and non-aligned manner to promote and safeguard Sri Lanka's interests abroad as well as protect Sri Lanka's national interest, sovereignty and identity. "These fundamental and crucial elements complement the goal of working towards greater prosperity for the country and the people of Sri Lanka."