Sri Lanka: Early Warning of War Crimes?

Speaking to Le Monde journalist Philippe Bolopion on condition of anonymity, a UN official stated the following:

“On savait qu’on se préparait à un carnage. On a tiré la sonnette d’alarme pendant des mois, mais ils n’ont jamais frappé en public sur le gouvernement. Tout le monde a peur que son agence soit jetée dehors.”

“We knew carnage was brewing. We rang the alarm bells for some months but no one ever took the Sri Lankan government to task publicly. Everyone is scared of having their agency removed from the country.”

Bolopion, Le Monde’s special correspondent in Colombo also obtained evidence of text messages (SMS) sent by local UN and NGO staff from the scene of the war crime.

March 9: “Please, ask the Sri Lankan army to stop.”

March 14: “Where is the no-fire zone”?

And as the LTTE starts recruiting by force:

March 12: “Both sides are torturing us.”

March 12: “We’re dying! Two shells landed 10m away.”

March 19: “Youths are being taken to fight, very sad. How is the international community reacting?”

March 21: “Hundreds of people trying to escape were stopped by local dictators. They were beaten with sticks, without distinction by age or gender. I hear they crying very loudly.”

March 21: “Why is the international community staying silent?”

So much for the responsibility to protect.

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One response to “Sri Lanka: Early Warning of War Crimes?

  1. Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s comments http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1910894,00.html

    What if an elected government is acting against its own people?
    MR: Are you going to punish [all the] citizens for that or the man who is responsible? Take me. Say that I violated all these human rights, killed people, right? Do you punish me, Mahinda Rajapaksa, or the innocent people of this country by sanctions, embargoes, travel advisories? There are ways of punishing me if you want. There, now by saying that I will get punished. [Laughs.]

    Many people feel the cost of ending the war was too high in terms of human rights, in terms of civilian casualties.
    MR: I reject that totally. There was no violation of human rights. There were no civilian casualties. If I did that, it wouldn’t have taken 21/2 years to finish this. I would have done this in a few hours. These are all propaganda.

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