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International Emminent Persons Group observing Human Rights panel hold inaugural meeting in Colombo

The Eight-Member Commission of the Inquiry appointed to Investigate and Inquire into alleged serious violations of human rights (COI) and the Eleven-Member International Independent Group of Emminent Persons appointed to observe the functions of the Commission of Inquiry (IIGEP) met in Colombo for the first time on 12 -13 February 2007.

Addressing the media today Government Spokesperson for National Security, Minister Keheliya Rambukwella said the constituting of these groups and particularly the international independent group was indicative of the transparency the GOSL sought to bring to this process. The international panel headed by former Chief Justice P.N. Bhagwati, includes Mr. Andreas Movromatis, Dr. Kamal Hossain, Mr. Marzuki Darusman, Prof. Yozo Yokota, Prof. C. Fasseur, Prof. Sir. Nigel Rodley KBE, Mr. Arthur E Dewey, Prof Ivan Shearer, Dr Bruce Matthews, Dr. B. Kouchner. They had decided to initially focus on the first three cases listed in the schedule of incidents they have been mandated namely; the assassination of Foreign Minister Kadirgamar in August 2005, the killing of 17 aid workers of the international NGO Action Contra La Faim (ACF) in early August 2006 and the alleged execution of Muslim villagers in Muttur in early August 2006 and the execution at Welikanda of 14 persons from Muttur who were being transported in ambulances. They are scheduled to meet again on 12 -13 March 2007.

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