Sri Lanka & Australia after the war: Forum on post-war justice & the indefinite detention of refugees

Event date: 
4 Mar 2014 5:00pm
Chem Sciences M17, Building F10 (next door to UNSW Law)
What is Australia’s role in ensuring post-war justice in Sri Lanka?
Elaine Pearson, M.A Sumanthiran, Stephen Blanks

Almost five years after the end of the 30 year conflict in Sri Lanka, there has been no credible investigation of Sri Lanka’s alleged war crimes despite evidence of atrocities against the civilian Tamil population. What is Australia’s role in ensuring post-war justice in Sri Lanka? Given Australia’s close economic, intelligence and security ties to Sri Lanka, there are concerns that it may not support a motion at the meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council in March for an independent investigation into the alleged crimes. Meanwhile, the UN Human Rights Council has found Australia in violation of its own international law obligations for indefinitely detaining around 50 Tamil refugees deemed to be a security risk by ASIO. They remain stuck in a legal black hole.

Elaine Pearson, Human Rights Watch
M.A Sumanthiran, Human Rights Lawyer and Member of the Sri Lankan Parliament, Tamil National Alliance
Stephen Blanks, Lawyer representing several detained Tamil refugees

Chair: Prof Andrea Durbach, UNSW Law