China fiasco among charges against GL

Disgracing the country by overstaying his invitation in China and thus abusing the hospitality of the host country is one of six charges levelled against External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris in a no-confidence motion in Parliament.

The motion signed by four United National Party (UNP) Parliamentarians – John Ameratunga, Ravi Karunanayake, Lakshman Kiriella and Wijeyadasa Rajapakse – has already been handed over to the Secretary General of Parliament.

G.L. Peiris

Dr. Peiris undertook a week-long visit to China. The UNP motion says the Chinese government had extended him hospitality only for five days. However, he had persuaded Sri Lankan diplomats in Beijing to speak to Chinese authorities and extend his stay. Dr. Peiris declared last week that he “welcomed” the motion since he could clarify the charges against him.

Mr. Karunanayake said yesterday he expected the no-confidence motion to be placed on the Order Paper next week. “We are asking for an early debate,” he told the Sunday Times.

Here is the text of the no-confidence motion:

“This House resolves that the Hon. (Prof.) G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs has forfeited the confidence of this House in as much as he has failed to uphold and preserve the reputation and good name of this country internationally which has resulted among other things in the Secretary General of the United Nations Organisation appointing of a Panel of Experts to advise him on the human rights violations in Sri Lanka and the Minister making several contradictory statements regarding the real position and the steps taken by the Government of Sri Lanka in respect of these matters, as evidenced by:

His interview with Elizabeth Dickinson (Asst. Managing Editor at Foreign Policy) on 25.05.2010, where he said “if there are problems that surface later, shortcomings, deficiencies, then we will come to the UN and say: “We would like assistance with the following.”

But later, as reported in The Island of 25.05.2010 that there is no justification legal or moral for this step (UN probe) to be taken at this time.

And again as reported in the Daily News of 26.05.2010 the proposal to conduct international investigations or event to appoint panels would duplicate the work of the Commission and would give rise to a negative political reaction within Sri Lanka.

“Knowing fully well that the terms of reference of the Commission do not include any reference to the accountability process for violation of international human rights and that the exclusion of accountability of the Commission is a shortcoming referred to by the Minister which then enables the UN to intervene.

His inability to muster the support of friendly countries specially the members of the Non-Aligned Movement to check Ban Ki-moon’s efforts to appoint the panel to advise him on Sri Lanka’s violation.His overreacting to the threat to deny the General System of Preference (GSP) to Sri Lanka and making contradictory statements in this regard.His disgracing the country by overstaying his invitation to China and thus abusing the hospitality of the host country.”

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