Wednesday, September 16, 2009

UNHRC head welcomes investigations by Sri Lanka into the Channel 4 video (By: Walter Jayawardhana

Navaneetham Pillai, head of the United Nation's Human Rights charge told Sri Lankan Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe in Geneva, Switzerland yesterday (Sept 15) that she welcomed the investigations done by the Sri Lankan administration regarding UK's Channel 4 doctored videocassette alleging human human rights violations against the country.
Sri Lanka's Disaster Management and Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe met Pillai to short her regarding the contentious tapes.
Minister Samarasinghe told the UN bureaucrat that two investigations, one in Australia, and another at the University of Moratuwa in Sri Lanka were conducted by experts and together have concluded the video clips were fakes depicting malicious deceptions.
Minister Samarasinghe said the broadcasters have not abide by the basic journalistic principle of verifying what they broadcast and they should abide by a code of conduct that all materials previous to publication should be thoroughly verified for its genuineness.
The doctored video which Channel 4 broadcasted alleging extrajudicial killings by the Sri Lanka Army, damaged the picture of Sri Lanka and even after it had been proved further than any reasonable doubt that they were hoaxes the alteration would not rub out off the damage 100 percent, he told Navaneetham Pillai.
Minister Samarasinghe also met the team of Philip Alston, particular Rapporteur of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights on extra judicial, summary or arbitrary executions as he is in new York. Going by the supposedly doctored tapes Alston had been very dangerous of Sri Lanka.
He also told the Alston team that he should be conveyed that the two self-governing investigations done by the Sri Lankan government should be welcomed by him. Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe said since Alston rushed to make a declaration he should have the same amount of urgency to welcome the investigations. He said he would request him to welcome them as it is nothing but the right thing to do.
Minister Samarasinghe also briefed them on the IDP's and the regularization of LTTE ex-combatants.

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