South Asia

New government must make human rights a priority, says Amnesty

Sri Lanka’s new government must urgently address a legacy of pressing human rights issues left by the previous administration, Amnesty International said.

“Although the campaign was marked by intimidation and attacks primarily against opposition campaigners, it was heartening to see the election day passed largely without violence. This is to the credit of the thousands of courageous election observers who ensured that all Sri Lankans were able to enjoy their right to political participation without fear,” said David Griffiths, Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia Pacific Director through a media release.

“The new government now has an opportunity to usher in a new era of genuine respect for human rights – it is one that must not be missed,” he added.

The release highlights seven key issues the new administration must make a priority. These include the repeal of the 18th constitutional amendment, “which undermines judicial independence and other human rights safeguards by placing key state institutions into the hands of the President,” and the repressive Prevention of Terrorism Act, which grants security forces sweeping powers to violate human rights.

“Sri Lanka has for years resisted all international efforts to investigate the conflict years, and instead relied on domestic investigation bodies that toed the government line. This has to end – the new government should cooperate fully with the UN investigation,” Mr. Griffiths.



Sri Lanka Presidential polls: Full Coverage



People's verdict: Rajapaksa concedes defeat >Read here


In pictures: A look at the eventful political journey of South Asia's longest-serving leader Mahinda Rajapaksa >Read here


World reacts: Politicos and commentators reacted as clear signs of Maithripala Sirisena's victory in the Sri Lanka Presidential elections started to emerge. Here's what they had to say >Read here


In depth: All you need to know about Maithripala Sirisena >Read here


Timeline: A look into the political history of the island nation from 1956. >Read here


Commentaries: With Maithripala Sirisena recording a resounding victory, we have a few commentators who have voiced their views regarding the people's mandate >Read here





Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Jul 31, 2021 10:24:03 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/new-government-must-make-human-rights-a-priority-says-amnesty/article6772231.ece

Next Story