Following today’s report regarding Sri Lanka by Dr. Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, New Democrats reiterate their call for a full boycott of the upcoming Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Colombo.
Dr. Pillay reported that she had seen no evidence of efforts by the Sri Lankan government to credibly investigate allegations of war crimes and human rights abuses. She expressed particular concern about a recent surge in violence, harassment, and intimidation against women and girls, religious minorities, human rights defenders, lawyers, and journalists.
New Democrats believe that Canada must take a principled position against Sri Lanka’s lack of accountability for alleged war crimes during the civil war. Establishing the truth of these events through an independent and impartial investigation is a crucial step towards reconciliation. We urge Minister Baird to use tomorrow’s Commonwealth Ministerial meeting to announce a full boycott by Canada of November’s Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
Paul Dewar, NDP Foreign Affairs Critic
Wayne Marston, NDP Human Rights Critic