COLOMBO — A former Norwegian minister who once played a key role in brokering peace between the Sri Lankan government and Tamil Tiger rebels yesterday called for an international investigation into alleged human rights abuses in Sri Lanka. Erik Solheim, a former minister of International Development, told Xinhua in an email that the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, who is scheduled to visit Sri Lanka this month, should pass on a strong message to the Sri Lankan government. “Tens of thousands of humans perished in the last phase of the Sri Lankan war.
Time has long passed when the international community will close its eyes and allow impunity for alleged war crimes.
As long as there is no credible domestic process in Sri Lanka, the international community should start an international inquiry,” he said.
Solheim mediated between the government and the Tamil Tiger rebels before fighting broke out again in 2006, resulting in the rebels being eventually defeated in May 2009.
Most hardline Sinhalese political parties in Sri Lanka have seen Solheim as a staunch supporter of the Tamil Tigers, an allegation the former Norwegian minister denied. — Al Jazeera
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