On March 6, 2007, the US
State department released reports on countries and their Human Rights Practices
for 2006. Indeed, there have been sharp increases in human rights violations and
the US state department listed most of the violations.
Here we have compiled
misleading and contradicting information concerning statements made by
Ambassador Blake and the US State Department. Since there were major
contradictions between the US State Department report and the speeches made by
the Ambassador Blake during that one year period; it’s obvious that Mr. Blake
was dancing to the tune of a foreign government in violation of state department
guidelines to all ambassadors world wide representing the interest of the US.
1) “ Mr. President, the United States
appreciates the positive steps taken by your government to address some
of the most vexing issues associated with the conflict, especially the
formation of the Consultative Committee on Humanitarian Affairs and the
active participation by the Minister for Disaster Management and Human
Rights and the Secretary of Defense. This committee is making
productive strides in addressing important issues relating to humanitarian
access and human rights in the conflict zones and all of Sri Lanka’s donor
partners hope this valuable dialogue can continue.” Ambassador Blake,
January 27th, 2007.
US State Department 2006 report:
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
The law makes torture a punishable offense but does not implement several
provisions of the UN Convention Against Torture. Human rights groups
maintained that while torture is prohibited under specific circumstances, it
was allowed under others. According to the HRC and other credible sources,
the use of police torture to extract admissions and confessions was endemic
and conducted with impunity. In addition, the Emergency regulations make
confessions obtained under any circumstance, including by torture,
sufficient to hold a person until the individual is brought to court; 528
arrests were made under the Emergency regulations during the year, although
288 of those arrested were released within 12 hours. The majority of those
arrested were Tamil, although detainees included Sinhalese and Muslims as
well. In addition to suspicion of terrorism, people were detained for lack
of identification, narcotics, and outstanding warrants (see section 1.d.).
Observers estimate that 200 persons remained in custody under detention
orders at years end. The SLHRC reported that 433 individuals were tortured
in police custody during the year (see section 1.c.).
Methods of torture included beatings-often with sticks, iron bars or hose;
electric shock; suspending individuals by the wrists or feet in contorted
positions; burning; genital abuse; and near-drowning. Detainees reported
broken bones and other serious injuries as a result of their mistreatment.
The trial that began in October 2005 of three police officers indicted by
the Kurunegala High Court for the 2002 alleged torture and sexual abuse of
Nandini Herat continued at year's end.
The majority of the 44 allegations of police torture came from police
stations outside the north and east. The government continued to investigate
most cases of torture, according to the SLHRC, with 14 torture cases pending
in courts at year's end, with no convictions.
Question #1 : Mr. Ambassador, how was it possible you do appreciate a
leadership which had continuously violated human rights according to our own US
state department human rights report?. How does not implementing several
provisions of UN Convention against Torture could be good sign in a positive
direction of a leadership of a foreign country? Were you misleading the American
people or is the state department misleading the American people?
2) “Sri Lanka now has an important
opportunity finally to achieve peace and that opportunity must be seized.
President Rajapakse has a strong majority in Parliament. His party, the
SLFP, is in the final stages of crafting a power-sharing proposal that will
then be shared with the All Party Representative Committee, under the
capable leadership of Professor Vitharana.”- U.S. Ambassador Robert Blake at
the National Peace Council Symposium, 2007.
department report 2006:
government's respect for the human rights of its citizens declined due in
part to the breakdown of the CFA. Credible sources reported human rights
problems, including unlawful killings by government agents, high profile
killings by unknown perpetrators, politically motivated killings by
paramilitary forces associated with the government and the LTTE, and
disappearances. Human rights monitors also reported arbitrary arrests and
detention, poor prison conditions, denial of fair public trial, government
corruption and lack of transparency, infringement of religious freedom,
infringement of freedom of movement, and discrimination against minorities.
There were numerous reports that armed paramilitary groups linked to
government security forces participated in armed attacks, some against
civilians. Following the December 1 LTTE attempt to assassinate Defense
Secretary Gothabaya Rajapaka, the government strengthened emergency
regulations that broadened security forces' powers in the arrest without
warrant and non-accountable detention of civilians for up to 12 months.
If the US state department can report breakdown of CFA had caused for current
increase human right violation how come you are so confident about the so called
final draft of proposal of power sharing?. Were you sugar coating and mislead
the American people of a foreign government alleged attempt to power share with
minorities of that country? Or the State Department was misleading the American
department report 2006:
January five Tamil youths were shot execution-style in a coastal High
security zone in Trincomalee heavily controlled by the police Special Task
Force (STF) and the Sri Lanka Navy (SLN). Although civil groups and members
of the government widely suspected police STF involvement in the incident, a
ballistic report indicated that standard-issue STF guns had not killed the
individuals, and the case was dropped. Some credible observers believe the
STF committed the killings using non-standard issue weapons.
Statements from Ambassador Blake on the incident: NONE.
Follow-up made on the presidential investigation: NONE.
And yet, Mr. Blake said the following earlier this year to the Tamil daily,
“Thinakural,” “The human rights minister
recently visited Jaffna and I am happy about it. I believe that this is a
sign that the government is interested in resolving.”
How can a year of no results on the presidential investigation be good sign?
Were you simply adding raisins on the pie of deception?
All in all, the US state
department report of 2006 listed more two hundred incidents on human rights
violations between January and December 2006. The speeches made during the same
time period by Ambassador Blake contradict the State department’s own report.
This is a great betrayal of trust by Mr. Blake in the view of the American