Sri Lanka should reconcile with Tamils: US
Posted on: 07:38 AM IST Mar 14, 2012
Washington: The United States on Tuesday said that unless Sri Lankan government reconciles with minority Tamils and addresses allegations of war crimes it risks renewed conflict.
Thousands of Tamil civilians died in the final months of its civil war that ended in 2009. The US has introduced a draft resolution at the UN Human Rights Council, increasing international pressure on Sri Lanka to conduct an independent investigation.
The council in Geneva is expected to vote next week on the resolution that stops short of demanding an outside probe, but has angered Sri Lanka, which claims it could stir separatism.
Robert Blake, assistant secretary of state for South and Central Asia, said that accountability and reconciliation was in Sri Lanka's best interests, so "they really can achieve peace and security and not sow anger in their own community that could give rise to new violence."
"Experience in many civil conflicts around the world has shown that countries that don't take adequate measures to address reconciliation and accountability frequently experience a regeneration of the insurgency that they faced," he told The Associated Press. "We could see very much that similar situation in Sri Lanka."
The resolution calls on Sri Lanka to investigate allegations of human rights abuses by both the government troops and Tamil Tiger rebels in the final months of the quarter-century war, and implement recommendations of its own reconciliation panel.