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Ready to probe complaints of missing persons: Lanka OMP

The Office of Missing Persons (OMP) aims to bring in reparations to the victims of the nearly three-decade long armed conflict which ended in 2009.


PTI Sri Lanka
Updated: 15-07-2018 20:13 IST

Sri Lanka's Office of Missing Persons said today it will launch an impartial probe into the complaints on thousands of people who have allegedly gone "missing" after surrendering to the military during the brutal civil war against the LTTE.

The Office of Missing Persons (OMP) aims to bring in reparations to the victims of the nearly three-decade long armed conflict which ended in 2009.

"I have said the OMP will impartially and scientifically examine any specific complaint relating to persons who surrendered to the forces," OMP Chairman, Saliya Peiris tweeted.

Peiris remarks came after he and his officials visited the northern Jaffna town yesterday to meet with the relatives of the missing persons.

The OMP visited the former LTTE stronghold of Kilinochchi - from where a parallel administration was run for 30 years in the north and east.

The OMP's public outreach in Jaffna yesterday was met with angry protests from the relatives of the disappeared persons.

Peiris said despite protests several hundred families of the missing persons met with the OMP.

"We have appeared before many commissions that assured us to find whereabouts of our missing children but nothing happened. How can we believe in OMP process? We dont believe government would provide us justice but only an international probe will do," a mother of a missing person told the officials of the OMP.

Sri Lanka has faced grave human rights abuse charges including the execution of the LTTE members who had surrendered to the military in May 2009 during the final battle which crushed the LTTE.

It has denied the charge but was rapped in three consecutive UN human rights council resolutions which called for an independent investigation for war crimes blamed both the on the LTTE and the government troops.

The office is the result of UN Human Rights Council resolutions passed against Sri Lanka, as allegations remain that the government and military committed major human rights abuses as it brought to an end a protracted civil war.

The OMP's main aim is to search and trace missing persons, clarify the circumstances in which they have gone missing and their fate, make recommendations towards addressing incidents of missing persons, protect the rights and interests of missing persons among others.

It will also make recommendations to the authorities concerned to prevent the recurrence of such incidents.

A commission appointed in 2013 to probe disappearances in Sri Lanka reported that nearly 25,000, including 5000 from the security forces, remain missing due to armed insurgencies in the country since the mid 1980s.

According to an estimate, around 20,000 people are believed to have gone missing after the end of the war, which killed over 100,000.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

COUNTRY : Sri Lanka

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