Mar 052013

Leading News from Sri Lanka::

* Sri Lanka human right defenders have several remedies for action against violationsWed, Mar 6, 2013, 12:05 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Mar 05, Geneva: Sri Lankan human right defenders who seek to address human rights violations have recourse to several remedies thorough the country’s Constitution, Sri Lanka told the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) Tuesday.

Addressing the Interactive Dialogue with Special Rapporteurs on Torture and on Human Rights Defenders at the 22nd session of UNHRC in Geneva Sri Lanka said the country’s Human Rights Commission (HRC) has powers to entertain complaints regarding human rights violations of individuals or groups of persons and to investigate complaints of alleged violations or imminent violations.

The wide mandate of the Commission envisaged under the Human Rights Act of 1996 facilitates and enables human rights defenders to collaborate with the HRC in promotion and protection of and advancing human rights, the UNHRC told.

Sri Lanka said all persons were equal before the law in Sri Lanka and entitled to the equal protection of the law, and pointed out that human right defenders under the Constitution can file a Fundamental Rights Application in Supreme Court, file a writ application in Court of Appeal, complain before the Human Rights Commission and invoke epistolary jurisdiction by a communication to the Supreme Court against rights violations.

Sri Lanka acknowledged the important role played by civil society in the promotion and protection of human rights, and strongly condemned reprisals or threats against human rights defenders.

Full text presented at the UNHRC session

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