Wickremesinghe Contradicts Sirisena On International Involvement In War Crimes Probe

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe contradicted President Maithripala Sirisena on the international involvement in a war crimes investigation mechanism, adding that “we have not ruled that out”.

In a recent interview with Channel 4 News, Wickremesinghe said that “We have not ruled that out. We are standing by our commitment in the Geneva resolution. We are putting together a mechanism for accountability and reconciliation by May.”

Meanwhile, he also stated that those that surrendered at the end of the war and are still missing in Sri Lanka are ‘most probably dead’.

“This is why the missing persons office and the TRC are there. We have to find out what happened”, he said.

“There are no detention centres in the north or the south. There are 292 in detention are known to the government no others”, the Prime Minister added, commenting on the reports of detention centres.

However, Wickremesinghe went on to dispute UN estimates that 40,000 civilian deaths, saying that a further investigation would be required.

Commenting on the number of civilian casualties, “We have a question mark as whether it is 40,000 but we are interested in finding out the actual number. We know there were casualties there had to be casualties in that type of fight. But we are interested in standing with the international community to determine the final numbers.”

(With inputs from The Tamil Guardian)

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