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US wanted to know UN position on Sri Lanka: Wikileaks

world Updated: Nov 29, 2010 19:02 IST
Sutirtho Patranobis

The United States wanted its diplomats at the UN headquarters to find what the global agency was thinking about the human rights situation in Sri Lanka, new documents released by the whistle blowing website Wikileaks have revealed.

Some of the cables released by the website pertain to queries made by the US state department about what the UN was doing about human rights violation and war crimes in countries like Sierra Leone and Rwanda.

The Guardian newspaper published the secret cables sent to the US diplomats in which enquires were made about Sri Lanka.

One such cable was dispatched in July, 2009; two months after Lankan government troops defeated the separatist Tamil rebels amid allegations of human rights violations by both sides.

``Views and intentions of UNSC (UN security council), UN human rights entities, and members regarding Sri Lankan government policies on human rights and humanitarian assistance; UN views about appointing a Special Envoy for Sri Lanka,’’ the cable queried from the diplomats.

Next, it goes on ask the diplomats to find out, ``Plans and perceptions of member states toward establishment of new measures to prevent genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and other systematic human rights abuses; plans and intentions of member states toward proposals and resolutions supported by the US or like-minded states, including those advancing democracy.’’

It was at about the same time the enquiries were made that many western countries including the US had said that an independent international probe was needed to investigate the alleged human rights violations committed as the civil strife came to an end.

It was in June this year that UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon appointed a three-member international team to probe and advice him on the last phase of the war.