Foreign Minister leaves for Geneva to participate in 43rd UNHRC session

Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena left for Geneva this morning(25) with a two member delegation to participate in the 43rd Session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

Gunawardena will address the 43rd Session of the UN Human Rights Council tomorrow (26) and announce Sri Lanka’s decision to withdraw from the co-sponsorship of  UNHRC  Resolution 30/1.

The Minister is also scheduled to hold a meeting on this regard with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on the 28th of February.

The human rights situation in Sri Lanka will be formally raised on Thursday (27) by Bachelet.

On the 19th of February, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa announced that Sri Lanka will withdraw from UNHRC resolution 30/1, which was co-sponsored by the previous Government, in response to the US travel ban on  Army Commander  Lt. Gen. Shavendra Silva & members of his family.

However, The UN High Commissioner has urged the Sri Lankan Government to fully implement resolution 30/1, and continue to engage positively with Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and United Nations human rights mechanisms to promote reconciliation, accountability and human rights.