Left Menu
Development News Edition

US bans visits by Sri Lanka army chief over war crimes

PTI | Washington DC | Updated: 14-02-2020 21:48 IST | Created: 14-02-2020 21:40 IST
US bans visits by Sri Lanka army chief over war crimes
File photo Image Credit: ANI

The United States said Friday it would refuse entry to Sri Lanka's army chief over "credible" evidence of human rights violations in the bloody 2009 finale to the civil war. Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva, whose appointment last year drew wide international criticism, will be ineligible to visit the United States, as will his immediate family, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.

"The allegations of gross human rights violations against Shavendra Silva, documented by the United Nations and other organizations, are serious and credible," Pompeo said in a statement. "We urge the Sri Lankan government to promote human rights, hold accountable individuals responsible for war crimes and human rights violations, advance security sector reform, and uphold its other commitments to pursue justice and reconciliation," he said.

Silva was the commanding officer of an army division in the island's northern war-zone in the final months of the military offensive against Tamil Tiger rebels in 2009. Rights groups say some 40,000 ethnic Tamils were killed in mass atrocities as government forces seized Sri Lanka's predominantly Tamil north.

The United Nations, in a report into the allegations, said Silva played a major role in orchestrating war crimes. The 2009 offensive delivered a death blow to the Tamil Tigers, whose nearly four-decade campaign for a separate homeland had killed 100,000 people and was characterized by the rebels' bloody suicide attacks.

Pompeo nonetheless said that the United States hoped to maintain security cooperation with Sri Lanka, which last year was rocked by Easter Sunday bombings by Islamist extremists. "We deeply value our partnership with the Sri Lankan government and the long-standing democratic tradition we share with the Sri Lankan people," Pompeo said.

Sri Lanka's successive governments have resisted calls for an independent investigation into the conduct of troops during the final months of the conflict. (AFP) RUP


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

New farm bills in India: Focusing on farms or farmers?

... ...

Kenya’s COVID-19 response: Chaos amid lack of information

Confusing numbers and scanty information on how effective curfews and lockdowns have been in breaking transmission have amplified coordination and planning challenges in Kenyas response to COVID-19. Without accurate data, it is impossible t...

Farkhad Akhmedov: Calculating the price of impunity from the law

In insistences such as the battle over the Luna, Akhmedov has resorted to extreme legal machinations to subvert the High Courts decision and keep his assets from being seized. ...

Guinea’s elections hearken back to the autocracy and violence of its past

... ...

Videos

Latest News

'It got scary': Gloria Estefan's daughter on coming out as a lesbian

By Hugo Greenhalgh LONDON, Oct 20 Thomson Reuters Foundation - Forbidden by her global superstar mother Gloria Estefan from coming out as a lesbian to her grandmother, singer Emily Estefan said she contemplated suicide.The second child of m...

Driving licence of motorists not wearing helmets to be suspended for three months in K'taka

Riding two-wheelers without wearing helmets in Karnataka will lead to suspension of driving licence for a period of three months, the state Transport department has said. In a letter dated October 16, the Commissioner for Transport and Road...

Dr Harsh Vardhan launches CSIR Ushered Repurposed Drugs website

Dr Harsh Vardhan, Minister of Science Technology, Health and Family Welfare and Earth Sciences, today launched a website that gives comprehensive information about the numerous COVID-19 clinical trials that CSIR is engaged in a partnership...

Wall Street backs Intel's $9 billion sale of NAND unit to Hynix

Intel Corps 9 billion sale of its NAND memory chip unit will help the U.S. chip giant focus on its core business in higher-margin processors, Wall Street analysts said on Tuesday, after its deal with South Koreas SK Hynix Inc. Intel, best k...

Give Feedback