Malawi condemns Sri Lanka

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Malawi and six other members of the Sri Lanka Core Group at the United Nations Human Rights Council have called out the Sri Lanka Government over violent attacks on peaceful protesters, surveillance of citizens and a lack of sound economic policies.

The Core Group statement on Sri Lanka dated June 14 was delivered by UK Ambassador Rita French on behalf of members of the core group which Canada, Germany, Malawi, Montenegro, North Macedonia, the UK and the United States.

According to the group, it is aware of the significant challenges that Sri Lanka has been facing over recent months, causing great hardship for the Sri Lankan people.

“We note that protesters, have exercised their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, and freedom of expression in recent months. We are deeply concerned by violent attacks on peaceful protestors and subsequent violence against government-aligned politicians and supporters. Those responsible for this violence must be held to account.

“We stress the crucial importance of upholding democracy, human rights and the rule of law, and maintaining independent institutions. We also urge the Sri Lankan authorities to address long-standing impunity and corruption, and underline the need for good governance and sound economic policies.

“Our concerns over surveillance and intimidation of civil society persist and we stress the importance of protecting civil society space,” the core group said.

The Core Group then called on Sri Lanka to cooperate with the High Commissioner and her Office and said it is ready to support Sri Lanka on the implementation of HRC resolution 46/1.

In Sri Lanka,  a lack of foreign currency has seen the country failing to import various commodities. There have been shortages of food and fuel leading to rise in prices.

There have also been power cuts, and a lack of medicines has brought the health system to the verge of collapse, according to the BBC.

Sri Lankans took to the streets of the capital, Colombo in April to protest against the economic challenges and over the past weeks protests have spread to other areas.

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