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* International concern on Army Chief's appointment based on allegations is regrettable, Sri Lanka envoy tells UNHRC
Thu, Sep 12, 2019, 09:32 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Sept 12, Colombo: Concerns on the recent appointment of Sri Lanka's Army Commander expressed by certain bilateral partners and international entities, based on allegations, is regrettable and contrary to the principles of natural justice, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Ambassador A L A Azeez told the UN Human Rights Council.

Ambassador Azeez delivering a statement during the General Debate at the 42nd Session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on Wednesday highlighting Sri Lanka's position said the appointment of the Commander of the Sri Lanka Army, is a sovereign decision taken by the Head of State.

He emphasized that external attempts to influence decisions and internal administrative processes of public service promotions in Sri Lanka are unwarranted and unacceptable.

Speaking of the terrorist attacks over 4 months ago, the Ambassador said although on Easter Sunday Sri Lanka was "put to test", the security forces restored the security with minimum disruption to socio-economic activities while ensuring fundamental rights of people.

"However we witnessed the continued resilience of Sri Lanka's security forces to protect the country and its people, while ensuring fundamental rights, consistent with the pledges it has made before this Council."

"These range from the speedy restoration of security which has minimized the impact on the country's socio-economic fabric and upheld its international reputation, the lifting of the State of Emergency within 4 months, providing the ICRC full access to individuals detained, engaging in an informed debate on seeking to upgrade the new counter terrorism legislation, and in deference to the sensitivities of the Muslim community, adjustment of the regulation banning full facial cover attire."

The Ambassador said the Sri Lankan Government remains committed to combating hate speech and all forms of crimes directed against ethnic and religious communities and is taking steps to counter religious radicalization and violent extremism.


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