UN Chief wants holistic approach to reconciliation in Lanka

Thursday, 26 September 2013 09:26 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has emphasised the need for a more holistic approach to address Sri Lanka’s remaining reconciliation challenges, during a meeting with President Mahinda Rajapaksa on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly on Tuesday. The UN Secretary General and the President exchanged views on the post conflict situation in Sri Lanka and the country’s cooperation with the UN, Ban’s Spokesman’s office said. The Secretary-General had also noted the Government’s latest efforts to conduct the provincial elections and to implement the recommendations of its Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, the UNSG Spokesman said. On the Sri Lankan delegation for the Ban-Rajapaksa meeting were Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the UN Palitha Kohona, Minister G.L. Peiris, Monitoring MP of the Ministry of External Affairs Sajin Vaas Gunewardane, Presidential Secretary Lalith Weeratunga and Additional Secretary to the Ministry, Kshenuka Seneviratne. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka featured in the UN Chief’s opening remarks to the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, when Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said the inability of Member States and the United Nations to prevent and put a stop to large-scale human rights violations has had disastrous consequences. Citing an internal review of UN action at the end of the war in Sri Lanka, Ban said the UN had identified a systemic failure. “Member States did not provide the United Nations system with support to meet the tasks they themselves had set; and the system itself unfortunately did not adapt properly or deliver fully,” the UN Secretary General told the General Assembly. Ban called for the renewal of commitment to the UN’s founding principles on the 20th anniversary of the Vienna World Conference on Human Rights this year. “I intend to do more to help Member States reach early consensus to prevent large-scale violations, and I am implementing recommendations to ensure that the UN system upholds its responsibilities under the Charter,” Ban said.