The Army’ s report on the implementation of the LLRC recommendations, submitted to Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, has recommended the continuation of the Police Department under the Defence Ministry – a drastic departure from the very recommendations that the report wanted to be implemented.
Going a step further, the Army report states that International Humanitarian Law (IHL) principles applicable to internal conflicts do not adequately address complexities of terrorism, and calls for new laws to regulate humanitarian agencies.
It has also suggested that specific guidelines for international humanitarian agencies in internal conflict situations are insufficient.
The LLRC recommendations (9.214) state that the Police Department, a civilian institution which is entrusted with the maintenance of law and order, should be de-linked from the institutions dealing with the armed forces that are responsible for the security of the State.
The LLRC recommendations also called for the creation of an independent permanent Police Commission in order to generate public confidence.
The LLRC stressed that such a Commission should be empowered to monitor the performance of the police service and ensure that all police officers act independently and maintain a high degree of professional conduct (9.215).
However, the army report prepared by the board of officers appointed by the Commander of Army, Lt. Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya has recommended that the current status of the Sri Lanka Police under the Ministry of Defence, be continued.
It also proposed that the Ministry of Defence should study and make recommendations with regard to the role of the police in insurgencies and terrorism, observing that in many countries where the Police comes under the Home Ministry or Provincial Administration during times of internal conflicts, have proved to be total failures due to the lack of integration and emphasized that in line with the government’s Tri-lingual policy, members of the armed forces should develop proficiency in two or more languages with giving priority for teaching Tamil and English and incentives be provided for those acquiring skills in two or more languages.
The report of the Board of Officers on the implementation of the recommendations made by the LLRC was handed over to the Secretary Defence Gotabhaya Rajapaksa by the Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya at the Defence Ministry yesterday.
Taking into consideration the recommendations made by the LLRC, the Commander of the Army had appointed a Board of officers comprising Major General Kamal Gunarathne, Brigadier Sanka Wickramarathne, Brigadier Aruna Wanniarachchi, Brigadier G.V. Ravipriya, Brigadier Suraj Bansajaya and Leutenant Colonel Piyal Wijesiriwardene to study the LLRC report and identify areas that are relevant to the Army and to formulate a viable action plan to address the specific areas so identified.