'STOP BULLYING SRI LANKA, SAID U.S. CONGRESSMAN'
commentators stress with UNHRC sessions ongoing:
"We should praise
Sri Lanka's work"
With the 22nd session of the UN Human Rights
Council ongoing, political commentators stressed that a US
Congressman has himself made representations that Sri Lanka should
not be 'bullied' i.e: that double standards should not be applied
with regard to the country.
Political commentators stressed U.S Congressman
Eni F.H.Faleomavaega who had visited Sri Lanka, criticized the US
double standard in its foreign policy towards Sri Lanka, and asked
'what is the necessity for a resolution against Sri Lanka a small
country Strategically important to USA, ' during sessions of the US
House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific recently.
He said: I have mentioned in my statement about
the double standards that we are applying in as afar as violation of
Human Rights and the sense that I have is why is the most powerful
country in the world picking on a small little country like Sri
Lanka- the size of West Virginia , 60,000 square miles with only 3
million people, the Congressman said.
Following is the full extract from portion of
Congressman Eni F.H. Faleomavaega's statement related to Sri Lanka
at the hearing of the US House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Asia
and the Pacific. February, 26,2013.
"The US simply cannot afford to lose Sri Lanka due
to its strategic importance. Last week I had the privilege of
visiting Sri Lanka and met with president Rajapaksa for more than 2
I also met with governor of the Northern Province.
And personally visited Jaffna because I wanted to see for myself the
post conflict developments since 2009,when Sri Lanka finally became
the first country in the world to eradicate terrorism on its own
soil, by defeating the Tamil Tigers - which remains listed as a
terrorist organization by 32 countries including our own country Mr.
Chairman, India , Canada and the members of the European Union , and
dubbed by the FBI as one of the most ruthless terrorist
organizations in the world."
"After a 30-year terrorist conflict or war the
challenges Sri Lankan government faces are enormous. But the strides
the Government has made to rebuild in a way that establishes lasting
peace and equality for all citizens should be firmly acknowledged."
"The United States should join Australia in
praising the work that Sri Lankan government has done in the North
and East of the Island in such a short period since the war. As
Australian deputy opposition leader Julie Bishops and the
parliamentary delegation she led recently, stated on their visit."
"Regrettably in the resolution it intendeds to
submit again to the United Nations Human Rights council, the US
fails to mention one , not even one positive development for Sri
Lanka . Such failures suggest that the United States is not being
even handed when it comes to dealing with sensitive human rights
issues across the globe."
"So I call upon my government, the United States
of America to find a better way forward rather than using United
Nations resolutions to destabilize developing nations like Sri Lanka
while ignoring human rights Abuses in nations like Indonesia , where
our geological strategic and military interests supersede our Human
"The US led United Nations resolution should also
be withdrawn for focusing only on the last few months of the war and
failing to acknowledge therefore almost 30 years, Mr. Chairman, the
Tamil Tigers hacked to death innocent men , women and children in
Sri Lanka, carried out some 378 suicide attacks more than any other
terrorist organization in the world."
"We also do not need to criticize Sri Lanka for
borrowing money from China. And by the way I was there Mr. Chairman
In terms of our ability to provide assistance to
these third world countries, China was able to provide Sri Lanka
with 500 million dollars of low interest loans, for them to rebuild
their sea port as well as a brand new international airport that I
was there to witness...."
Secondly, Ranking Member Faleomavaega reiterated a
number of his points from his opening remarks, raising concern over
the double standard with which the U.S. Administration seems to
approach human rights in the context of its foreign policy.
"I have mentioned in my statement about the double
standards that we are applying in as afar as violation of Human
Rights and the sense that I have is why is the most powerful country
in the world picking on a small little country like Sri Lanka- the
size of West Virginia , 60,000 square miles with only 3 million
people- and yet in Sri Lanka we are talking about 21 million people
living there." "The serious question that I have is that for 27 or
29 years this country was in the state of civil war.
It is not a conflict. It is not the question of
the Tamil people asking for more autonomy. We have to understand not
all Tamils are members of this terrorist organization called the
LTTE or the Tamil Tigers, that our government along with 32 other
countries also categorized as a terrorist organization."
"And in the process you are talking about for 27
years some eighty to hundred thousand Sri Lankans ended up dead. Lot
of innocent men ,women and children".
"What I am trying to seek here is that there also
was a country that had civil war. It was the United States of
America, for four years we ended up with 600,000 of our soldiers
died form that terrible conflict.
Ant it was not the question of Southern States
asking for more autonomy. They wanted to secede, pull away from the
mother country , just like the Tamil Tigers wanted to do in their
efforts in seeking this war against the Government ."
"My concern here is that we a looking at such a
small little sequence, of this two or three months that now we are
And the reason why we have this resolution before
the United Nations Human Rights Council, but forgetting the fact for
29 years that Sri Lankan government has had to deal with this
terrorist organization that I just could not believe the atrocities
that were committed by these people."
"And now overnight we just thought that we've got
to hit this resolution against them this is where my concern with
"Our government to the 10 year period that we were
in war in Vietnam .
In Vietnam Mr. Secretary, let's ask the tens and
thousands of women and children innocent civilians that we exposed
to Agent Orange , when we were there for the ten year period . Let's
ask the people in Laos and Cambodia for the six million pounds of
cluster bombs we dropped there, and these countered never declared
war on us."
"Where is the consistency in our standards as far
as Human Rights are concerned .
We are pointing the finger at this little country
Sri Lanka. and the thing that perhaps may be we need to clean up our
own backyard , as suggested may be we be little more consistent , if
we are going to do it against Sri Lanka. Let's make sure that we are
"So I just need your comment on that as I 've got
only one minute left on this"
I know I've only got, ten more seconds Mr.
I just want to say, that was part of the subject
that I discussed personally with the president of Sri Lanka, and he
is concerned. In fact, he is spending more time on the Northern
Province , and all the amount of resources their trying to do, to
make this as part of the reconciliation process."
"Thank you Mr. Chairman."
Courtesy : Daily News