Sri Lanka

Controversial CHOGM 2013 goes ahead


The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2013 (CHOGM 2013) commences today in Sri Lanka amidst controversy about the choice of the country as questions still linger over reported human rights abuses committed in its civil war which ended four years ago.

For more information about the CHOGM 2013 meeting you can find out more on their website here.

Meanwhile Sri Lanka’s President, Mahinda Rajapaksa, is slated to become Chair of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) as human rights activists and a number of country’s question the decision to hold the meeting in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka fought a 30 year civil war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), finally defeating them in a bloody combat in the North of the country in 2009. During the final days of the combat, despite reporters being barred from entering the war zone, there are videos and other documented evidence that human rights abuses were committed including rape and summary executions of LTTE cadre and civilians.

It is understood that Indian Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh, will not attend the meeting but will send his Foreign Minister instead. The Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, has confirmed that he will be boycotting the meeting. Other heads of state may also find excuses for not attending.

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