The US is not the enemy of Sri Lanka and come what may in Geneva, the two countries will continue to have good bilateral relations, US Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives Patricia Butenis exclusively told Ceylon Today last morning.
No doubt we are going through a tough time now, but I hope to continue the good working relationship I have with key people in the Sri Lankan Government, Ambassador Butenis said.
The US envoy said that her government views the proposed US backed resolution to be presented at the 19th Session of the UNHRC in Geneva as an effort to move the Sri Lankan Government towards implementing some very good recommendations born of a Sri Lankan Government commission. The LLRC is the Sri Lankan Government s own commission, with some excellent recommendations. I have to say that on accountability we find that it is disappointing and really fell short of things we think and some people in this country think need to be addressed. But by and large it s a good report. What we would like to know is where is the government s action plan? Which of these recommendations has the government embraced and which do they feel they can t? the Ambassador told this newspaper in a candid interview.
Addressing concerns raised by thousands of government-backed protestors on Monday, Ambassador Butenis dismissed claims that the resolution the US hopes to move in Geneva is in any way a conspiracy.
This is by no means a conspiracy ... the government has made some progress, but not on all the issues. I think now is the time to ask the government to commit publicly in an international forum this is our plan and we commit to doing it that is what we re asking for, the US Ambassador explained.
Asked what the take home message was from the government-backed protests on Monday, Ambassador Butenis responded that they certainly reflected the anger of the government over what was going on in Geneva. I did not take it frankly as repudiation by the population of Sri Lanka against human rights issues, she said.
Ambassador Butenis hailed the LLRC report and the commissioners, saying they delivered except in the accountability area. Up to a point I think some in the government felt that these were foreign issues. That we were meddling, that we were the only ones that cared about certain issues. And yet, the LLRC disproved that. These are Sri Lankan issues people who had suffered from all communities, the US Ambassador said.
She said that the US Government would not threaten or throw down ultimatums at Sri Lanka, but believes that attention to the country s post-conflict issues in an international setting will apply pressure on the government to meet their obligations. I think there is considerable sentiment in Sri Lanka for progress on these issues. It s a little frustrating that the government does not share that sense of urgency, the Ambassador said.
I understand that the government had huge challenges. They had 280,000 IDPs for whom they were responsible and we were working with them to get those folks resettled. But at the same time there were these other issues I am sorry they didn t begin to address, the US Envoy revealed
US did Government to commit sucide.
Edited By - Damed - 2 Mar 2012 01:16:26 GMT