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Humanitarian operation carried out in accordance with international norms - DSC

The entire humanitarian and Military operation was conducted in accordance with international norms and standards governing the conduct of internal armed conflicts, Deputy Solicitor General Yasantha Kodagoda said in his right of reply at the 11th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

“I say with responsibility that, as done in the past, the spokesperson for International Educational Development (IED) continued to utter complete falsehood at this Council this morning too, regarding the prevailing situation in Sri Lanka,” he said.

“Her presentation only supports lobbying by the remnants of the internationally infamous and ruthless terrorist organization - the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which was recently completely eliminated within Sri Lanka through political leadership which acted in the best interests of Sri Lanka, a professional and effective military leadership, and by well organized and disciplined military operations undertaken by the dedicated and capable Sri Lankan Security Forces.

The IED spokesperson’s utterances were supplemented by another set of falsehood presented by the International Movement Against All Forms of Discrimination And Racism (IMADR),” Kodagoda said. The LTTE’s direct lobbying as well as lobbying by hired and paid agents of the LTTE is of course not uncommon at this Council, he said.

“We are happy that a preponderant percentage of the international community has correctly understood the situation in Sri Lanka.

It was alleged that an ethnic based genocide was and is taking place in Sri Lanka and that Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) are being illegally detained and harassed by the Sri Lankan authorities,” he said.

“We have on previous occasions also briefed this august assembly, the internal armed conflict in Sri Lanka has now come to an end. The internationally infamous terrorist outfit - the LTTE has been completely eliminated within Sri Lanka. Military operations that were undertaken and executed by the Security Forces of Sri Lanka were highly successful.

The Sri Lankan security forces can account for every bullet that was fired, for every piece of artillery that was launched and for every bomb that was dropped. The entire operation was carried out for the specific purpose of eliminating terrorism and for the protection of national security and the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. The conduct of such operations is our sovereign right. In the unlikely event of such need ever arising in the future, we shall not hesitate to conduct any lawful operation in the best interests of our republic.

I wish to emphasise that the entire humanitarian and military operation was conducted in accordance with international norms and standards governing the conduct of internal armed conflicts,” Kodagoda said.

“Therefore, there is no legitimate or reasonable basis to conduct any international inquiry or install in Sri Lanka any other alien process. Indeed most unfortunately a certain number of civilians died. In any armed conflict civilian casualties are inevitable.

When the LTTE was forcefully keeping civilians as hostages and as human shields, when artillery was launched by the LTTE against the advancing security forces from densely populated areas, would not civilian casualties be the natural consequence?

“Such civilian deaths were most unfortunate. However, regrettably unavoidable. The Security Forces had to undergo immense hardships and had to suffer very high casualties. That was because the advancing Sri Lankan Army took every meaningful and practical step to ensure either zero civilian casualties or minimum casualties.

 

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