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As Ban Comments on Saudi Beheading of Sri Lankan, Nothing on Impeachment

By Matthew Russell

UNITED NATIONS, January 11 -- This week UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's spokesperson Martin Nesirky has been asked at least two questions related to Sri Lanka.

  One was answered two days after it was asked; on the other, the impeachment of the country's chief justice, Nesirky on January 11 said he has no comment.

  On January 9, Inner City Press asked Nesirky, "Any comment on Saudi Arabia's execution of Sri Lankan migrant / maid Rizana Nafiq?"

  Neither that day nor the next did an answer come back. But after the noon briefing on Friday, when Nesirky told Inner City Press "no comment" to the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake, Nesirky's office sent out the following

From: UN Spokesperson - Do Not Reply [at]
Date: Fri, Jan 11, 2013 at 12:56 PM
Subject: Note to correspondents -- on the execution of a Sri Lankan worker in Saudi Arabia

The Secretary-General is dismayed by the execution this week in Saudi Arabia of Ms. Rizana Nafeek, a young Sri Lankan domestic worker. He is concerned about reports of irregularities in her detention and trial, as well as the increase in the use of capital punishment in Saudi Arabia. He insists on the application of international human rights law, including the right to a fair trial, for all men and women in Saudi Arabia, irrespectively of their migration status or nationality. Currently, in Saudi Arabia, women do not have equal access to the courts or an equal opportunity to obtain justice. The Secretary-General is concerned that this is a situation which is even more precarious for women migrant workers given their foreign status.

   OK. But why not comment on the impeachment of Chief Justice Shirani Bandaranayake? Watch this site.

Footnote: it has been reported that Shavendra Silva, who despite his record was accepted on Ban Ki-moon's and Herve Ladsous' Senior Advisory Group on Peacekeeping Operations and even personally visited Ladsous' mission in Lebanon, has been called back to Colombo to handle crowd control in the wake of the impeachment.

  Since it was also reported that Silva was going to South Africa, then that he was blocked due to his record, we will seek more information -- and the SAG report. Watch this site.

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