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Monday, December 6, 2010
The Washington Times
6:20 p.m., Sunday, December 5, 2010The Sri Lankan government has appointed a senior army officer accused of war crimes in the conflict with Tamil rebels as its deputy permanent representative to the United Nations.
Maj. Gen. Shavendra Silva's presence in New York coincides with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon setting up a panel of experts to advise him on accountability for human rights violations during the final stages of the conflict in Sri Lanka.
In an interview with theSunday Leader newspaperlate last year, Gen. Sarath Fonseka, the Sri Lankan army chief who led a campaign that ended more than two decades of conflict with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in May 2009, said Defense Secretary Gothbaya Rajapaksa gave Gen. Silva orders "not to accommodate any LTTE leaders attempting surrender and that 'they must all be killed.'"
The army's 58th Division, which was under Gen. Silva's command, allegedly executed civilians, killed LTTE fighters as they tried to surrender and shelled medical facilities.
Gen. Silva denies the allegations.
Story Continues → Story Continues →
Monday, December 6, 2010
Suspect Sri Lanka war-criminal in UN post under US media spotlight[TamilNet, Monday, 06 December 2010, 07:42 GMT]
“The Sri Lankan government has appointed a senior army officer accused of war crimes in the conflict with Tamil rebels as its deputy permanent representative to the United Nations,” Washington Times said in a lead article Sunday referring to ex-Major General Shavendra Silva who commanded one of the largest divisions in Sri Lanka Army, and was the front line commander during the final phases of the war, the blood bath in which more than 40,000 Tamil civilians were alleged to have been killed in indiscriminate bombardment.
The paper quoted Alan Keenan, project director at the International Crisis Group (ICG) as saying “[it is] disturbing that someone who himself was involved in the very incidents that the U.N. has begun looking into should have any chance to influence the panel's operations.”
|HRW: Sri Lanka's war: Time for|
The paper also referred to the recent cable exposed by the website WikiLeaks, U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Patricia Butenis, wrote that the Sri Lankan president, along with the country's top civilian leadership and Gen. Fonseka are largely responsible for the alleged war crimes, the paper said.