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Anti-Sri Lanka resolution passed, India votes against neighbour

Mar 21, 2013 04:14 PM IST India India

Geneva: The US resolution against Sri Lanka over alleged human rights violations has been passed at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva. While 25 countries, including India, voted in favour of the resolution, 13 countries, including Pakistan, voted against it and eight countries abstained from voting.

While India could not move amendments to the resolution, Indian envoy Dilip Sinha, while speaking at the UNHRC debate, urged Sri Lanka to undertake measures and ensure accountability. The Indian envoy called upon Sri Lanka to implement lasting political settlement. "We urge Sri Lanka to take up investigation that is credible and acceptable to the international community," Sinha said. "Political settlement should be acceptable to all including Tamils," he added.

Speaking at the UNHRC debate, the Sri Lankan envoy said the US resolution was "clearly unacceptable". "The resolution casts aspersion on Sri Lanka's reconciliation process," the envoy said. "Sri Lanka's constructive engagement has been ignored," he added. He claimed that Sri Lanka was not consulted over the resolution.

Switzerland welcomed the US resolution against Sri Lanka saying, "We welcome the resolution. We underscore the importance of dialogue." Venezuala voted against the resolution saying it believed that this was a condemning resolution. Pakistan, which voted against the resolution, said, "A country specific resolution is not an example of constructive engagement."

Back home, Minister of External Affairs Salman Khurshid said that despite the vote, India's ties with Sri Lanka will continue unaffected. "The relationship with Sri Lanka will continue. There is a commitment with Sri Lanka which we will continue to work upon," he said.

The DMK, however, said it was dissatisfied with the resolution. Party MP TM Selvaganapathy said the resolution did not meet their demands.

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