President Maithripala Sirisena’s spokesperson, Rajitha Senaratne, said Sri Lanka’s new government will not hand over anyone to the international inquiry investigating allegations of war crimes committed against the Tamil people, but instead would hold a domestic independent inquiry and punish those found guilty locally.
“I heard Sarath Fonseka say that mistakes happen during a war, but if accepted international laws are violated – like shooting people with white flags, killing those who surrendered – they will be punished, because you cannot kill those who have surrendered,” Senaratne told BBC Sinhala, when asked what the new government would do if the OHCHR Investigation into Sri Lanka found former president Mahinda Rajapaksa guilty of war crimes.
“Even during the WW2 the fascist Japanese and Germans were given a trial and not shot against a wall. So no one can murder like that, there are local laws and international laws, but we will not hand over anyone for an international inquiry. We will investigate locally and do the needful here,” he added.
“The laws of the UN are not anyone’s laws. We also signed them. They are our laws too. When some foolish ministers fasted against them [laws] they actually fasted against ourselves,” he said.
“With a government of good governance the international community will get a different picture. The international community has great expectation about the new government because our promise is good governance. And that’s what they expect.”
“The difference between the way they deal with a government of good governance with the way they dealt with the previous lawless and authoritarian government will be vastly different—like sky and earth.”
“We will tell them that we will have an independent inquiry in Sri Lanka. We will have an independent inquiry and complete it as soon as possible and we will take legal action against perpetrators.