UNHRC adopts resolution; India abstains from voting

UNHRC adopts resolution; India abstains from voting

The UN Human Rights Council on Tuesday adopted a strong resolution against Sri Lanka’s rights record, in a setback to Colombo, which described the move as “unwarranted and unjustified” interference in its internal affairs.

The resolution titled Promotion of Reconciliation Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka’ was adopted by the 47-member Council after 22 members voted in favour of it at the ongoing UNHRC session here.

India and Japan were among 14 countries which abstained from voting. Eleven countries, including Pakistan, China and Russia, voted against the resolution.

Sri Lanka described the draft resolution as “unwarranted, unjustified and in violations of the relevant articles of the United Nations’ Charter”

The resolution was adopted despite intense lobbying by the government of President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who had dubbed the resolution as an act of political vendetta moved by the Western nations against Sri Lanka.

India, which abstained from voting, said its approach to the question of human rights in Sri Lanka is guided by two fundamental considerations.

“One is our support to the Tamils of Sri Lanka for equality, justice, dignity and peace. The other is in ensuring the unity, stability and territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. We have always believed that these two goals are mutually supportive and Sri Lanka’s progress is best assured by simultaneously addressing both objectives,” said Pawankumar Badhe, First Secretary, Permanent Mission of India, Geneva.

He said India supported the call by the international community for the Government of Sri Lanka to fulfill its commitments on the devolution of political authority, including through the early holding of elections for Provincial Councils and to ensure that all Provincial Councils are able to operate effectively, in accordance with the 13th amendment to the Sri Lankan Constitution.

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