Commission to probe war crime claims against Sri Lanka Army

Colombo: The Sri Lankan government on Wednesday said a proposed fact-finding commission will inquire into allegations against the army of committing war crimes during the final stages of a 30-year war with Tamil Tiger rebels. Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said the government will not flatly deny any allegation related to the war but will investigate them, Xinhua news agency reported. A fact-finding commission is expected to be established later this year following wide consultations with all stakeholders. Samaraweera said the commission will investigate if the army chain of command issued orders during the war which led to human rights violations. Allegations that the military may have used cluster bombs will also be looked into. Sri Lanka defeated the Tamil Tigers in May 2009 but Samaraweera said while the war was won little was done to win the peace. Sri Lanka has won the confidence of the international community and this was clear from the support the island nation received at the recently concluded United Nations Human Rights Council session in Geneva, he said. He invited the Tamil diaspora who are making allegations against the country to visit Sri Lanka and get a first-hand view of the changes now taking place in the island nation.