Sri Lanka summons Canada’s ambassador after Ottawa sanctions prime officers – Nationwide

Sri Lanka has summoned Canada’s envoy over Ottawa’s resolution to sanction 4 high-ranking officers for alleged human-rights breaches.

That nation’s authorities is accusing Ottawa of caving to Tamil diaspora politics in sanctioning two former presidents and two navy officers.

The choice “units a harmful precedent,” the South Asian state’s foreign-affairs ministry stated in a Tuesday information launch.

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Ottawa introduced Monday that it was barring two former presidents from entry to Canada — Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who resigned final July, and his older brother Mahinda Rajapaksa.

The pair had been in energy when Sri Lanka’s military defeated Tamil separatists who had waged a bloody, 26-year civil struggle with the nation’s majority Sinhalese inhabitants.

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Gotabaya quickly fled his nation final summer season amid mass protests over dwelling prices, whereas Mahinda resigned from his put up as prime minister final spring.

Ottawa additionally sanctioned two senior navy officers.

One is Sunil Ratnayake, whom a courtroom sentenced to loss of life for his position in a bloodbath of Tamils in 2000, solely to be pardoned by Gotabaya. The opposite is navy commander Chandana Prasad Hettiarachchi, who has been accused of abducting civilians who had been later killed.

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Along with the entry ban, the 4 can now not make monetary dealings inside Canada. The announcement gained substantial media consideration in South Asia.

Sri Lanka Overseas Affairs Minister Ali Sabry summoned the Canadian Appearing Excessive Commissioner Daniel Bood over the transfer Tuesday and urged Ottawa to “overview the choice.”

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Sabry stated in a press release that the sanctions had been primarily based on “unsubstantiated allegations” and “home political compulsions” and will hinder postwar reconciliation throughout the nation.

He stated the transfer “units a harmful precedent and is inimical to Sri Lanka’s curiosity” because it tries to work with elected Tamil representatives on a devolution and peace plan.

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Sabry’s ministry went on that the choice leaves democratically elected leaders “susceptible to arbitrary, exterior selections” that aren’t primarily based on due course of.

Haiti’s former prime minister Laurent Lamothe made the identical argument in a December courtroom submitting, contesting Canadian sanctions that Ottawa primarily based on his alleged help for violent gangs.

The workplace of Overseas Affairs Minister Melanie Joly argued all 4 of the Sri Lankan officers being sanctioned are liable for “the mindless lack of human lives,” and stated Canadian officers use an intensive course of to guage who deserves sanctioning.

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“Victims and survivors of gross human-rights violations deserve justice,” spokesman Adrien Blanchard stated in a press release.

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“We’re sending a transparent message that those that have dedicated gross human-rights violations in Sri Lanka should reply for the struggling they’ve triggered.”

Sri Lanka’s present president, Ranil Wickremesinghe, took workplace final July after financial turmoil that led to an increase in youngster malnutrition and a scarcity of medical gear.

Final month, Wickremesinghe stated his nation has “undergone the bleakest of instances, immense hardships” on account of final 12 months’s “abject financial collapse.”

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Sri Lanka’s overseas ministry stated it was poor timing for Ottawa to implement the sanctions, and argued the transfer “was in contravention of established diplomatic observe, disregarding current channels of normal bilateral interplay.”

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It stated that Canada has a job to play as peacemaker, given its personal giant inhabitants with Tamil roots.

But Joly’s workplace doubled down Tuesday, suggesting the nation isn’t doing sufficient.

“We proceed to name on Sri Lanka to take concrete actions to uphold its human-rights obligations and to determine a significant accountability course of,” Blanchard stated.

&copy 2023 The Canadian Press

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