Government urged to establish hybrid mechanism

The Government has been urged to establish a hybrid-international mechanism to deal with allegations related to the war.Amnesty International says by seeking to deliver on all four pillars – justice, truth, reparation and guarantees of nonrecurrence – through the establishment of these four mechanisms, Sri Lanka promises to break new ground and set global precedents that other states may follow in seeking to address impunity. The London based human rights organization says the mechanism must have a mandate to address crimes by all sides.Amnesty also notes that a broad temporal jurisdiction must be established and the mechanism must have jurisdiction over all crimes under international law. Successive Governments have announced programmes to provide permanent housing for the displaced; repair damaged houses; improve water and sanitation, assist with livelihood development and improve infrastructure, but Amnesty International says the programmes did not reach all those in need. (Colombo Gazette) Amnesty says a hybrid-international justice mechanism must be established and the mechanism must be provided with a clear mandate. “It is important that the commitments are delivered without delay and that all mechanisms coordinate with each other to ensure the effectiveness of their work,” Amnesty International said. The Government has also been urged to allow a Special Counsel to prosecute suspects at all levels and the Judges should be selected in an open, independent and transparent process.Amnesty also notes that victims of human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, including crimes under international law, have a right to full and effective reparation to address the harm they have suffered.It says reparation should seek to be transformative and address the individual, institutional and structural aspects that constitute the cause, contributing factors and/or consequences of violation and abuses. read more

Rich nations can also suffer from natural disasters says UN agency chief

“As a tourist or as a traveller, we can be faced by natural disasters that do not exist in our country. Therefore we have to be constantly prepared for all types of natural disasters,” Sálvano Briceño, Director of the Secretariat of the International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (ISDR), told a press briefing in Geneva. Stressing that even the richest countries have not been spared by such catastrophes, he added that recent weather-rated catastrophes provide an opportune moment for the media to pass the message that it is important for all to be prepared in the future. Such natural disasters will have ever more impact because of increased vulnerability due to urban growth and population growth, he said. People need to be better prepared, and there should be more education and awareness-raising on this subject, he said, adding: “People need to be aware of the importance of early warning systems, and how they can participate, and that there are programmes for preparing for natural catastrophes in which they can participate, as well as simulation exercises.” read more