PERTH, October 30, 2011 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s foreign minister Sunday condemned a “preposterous” UN-commissioned report alleging war crimes in his country, revealing he stopped Canada raising it at a Commonwealth meeting. Foreign Minister Gamini Peiris also confirmed Sri Lanka will host the next Commonwealth leaders’ meeting in 2013, saying that none of the 54-nation bloc raised the prospect of moving it during this year’s summit in Perth.
“There was no attempt whatsoever to revisit the issue relating to the venue,” he told reporters at the conclusion of the Perth meeting.
Ahead of Perth, Canadian premier Stephen Harper had raised concerns about Sri Lanka hosting the summit due to a UN panel’s allegations that the military massacred civilians in 2009 in the final stages of the Tamil rebellion.
Peiris said the report, commissioned by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, relied on anonymous, subjective evidence, dismissing its allegations that tens of thousands of civilians were slaughtered in the last days of the civil war.
“It is biased, it violates the rudimentary principles of natural justice, we reject it in its entirety,” he said.
“We have told all (Commonwealth) delegates of the reasons why we fi