Jayalath urges Sarath Fonseka to take his case to ICCPR
‘I have set a precedent by obtaining ruling against CBK govt.’


by Zacki Jabbar


DNA leader Sarath Fonseka, facing Courts Martial and legal action instituted by the government could successfully take his case to the International Committee for the Protection of Civil and Political Rights, UNP MP Jayalath Jayawardena said yesterday.

He told The Island that Fonseka had been hauled up before courts on flimsy charges and he (Jayawardena) had already set a precedent by obtaining a ruling from the ICCPR against the then Chandrika Bandaranaike government, for violating his fundamental rights.

"I am confident that General Fonseka can seek justice from the ICCPR. I have already set a precedent by becoming the first Sri Lankan to have obtained an ICCPR verdict against the undemocratic actions of the then Chandrika regime," Jayawardena said. "The Court Martial judgement, finding General Fonseka guilty of having engaged in politics while in uniform, is based on unreliable evidence. Any independent court applying the principle of natural justice will overturn that ruling."

Criticising President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s decision to ratify the Court Martial ruling that cashiered General Sarath Fonseka, Dr. Jayewardene said that Rajapaksa by his action had violated the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights(ICCPR), of which Sri Lanka was a signatory.

Asked how the ratification amounted to a violation of the ICCPR,  Jayawardena said that the covenant required signatories to honour the civil and political rights of its citizens.

"The Court Martial that sat in judgement over General Fonseka was totally biased towards him. Therefore, President Rajapaksa by ratifying such a verdict has violated the ICCPR. Sri Lanka has already lost the EU’s GSP Plus concession, due to its bad human rights record. The Fonseka verdict is tantamount to adding fuel to the fire," he said.

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