A number of my constituents have contacted me about the situation in Sri Lanka and the allegations of war crimes.

I wrote to Alistair Burt, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, seeking more information. He recently replied as follows:

The UK wants to see lasting peace and security in Sri Lanka. We have encouraged the Government of Sri Lanka to involve all communities in a fully inclusive process which addresses the underlying causes of the conflict.

On 25th April the UN Panel of Experts published its report on accountability for alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law during the military conflict which ended in May 2009. We are studying the report carefully, but the serious allegations made in it make it clear that the issue of accountability must be resolved before lasting reconciliation can be achieved in Sir Lanka.

We have consistently called for an independent and credible investigation to address these allegations which is why we fully support the decision of the Secretary-General to establish the Panel of Experts. We encourage Sri Lanka to use its response to the UN report and the report’s recommendations to strengthen the process of accountability.

I await the Government’s extended views when Sri Lanka replies to the UN report. In the meantime, here is the full report.

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