Defence spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella yesterday said the commission appointed by government, to report on human rights issues on which there has been a big hue and cry has commenced studying the assassination of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamr, the killing of 17 aid workers in Muttur and the massacre of Muslims who were fleeing from Muttur to Kantalai, on facts submitted by the Attorney Generals Department.
The 16 member commission comprising eminent personalities is headed by former Chief Justice of India P.T. Bhagwathi sat in Colombo on February 12 and 13 he said.
The Government has given the highest priority to human rights issues. The international community particularly UK, US, EU, Australia and certain foreign and local organisations were making a big issue of it and entertained doubts about the report submitted by Justice Mahanama Tillakaratne,Commissioner. It could be due to the reason that it consisted of locals, the Minister said.
The Minister said that the arrest of three Sinhalese who had direct links with the LTTE and had carried out attacks for them in certain areas have led to the arrest of ten others who were involved in subversive activity. When the first three were arrested people with vested interests made a big hue and cry that the security forces were abducting innocent people. Now it has been proved by their confessions that these people were not innocent.
The Minister also said the International NGO`s and NGO`s were treated in this country with respect. They were bringing in huge sums of dollars to the country. There were serious doubts about the role played by some of these organizations in Sri Lanka and the people with vested interests rose to their defence. But today some of the NGO`s had accepted that they had made mistakes. When their involvement with the terrorist groups was highlighted they had complained that they were being wrongfully linked with terrorist groups. But today `Save Children Fund` has sent us a letter apologising for the LTTE using their equipment the Minister said.