find the latest legal job
Senior Associate - Litigation & Dispute Resolution
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Come work for a firm ranked in Lawyers Weekly Top 25 Attraction Firms
View details
Associate - Workplace Relations & Safety
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Employer of choice · Strong team culture
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Banking and Finance Law | Location: All Perth WA
· Freelance opportunities through Vario from Pinsent Masons
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Adelaide SA
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
Freelance Lawyers
Category: Other | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· • Qualified lawyer with a strong academic background
View details
CHOGM inaction angers Amnesty

CHOGM inaction angers Amnesty

A leading human rights group has expressed outrage at the failure of Commonwealth leaders to press Sri Lanka over allegations of war crimes at this year's Commonwealth Heads of Government…

A leading human rights group has expressed outrage at the failure of Commonwealth leaders to press Sri Lanka over allegations of war crimes at this year's Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM).

In the lead up to CHOGM, the International Commission of Jurists Australia and the NSW Young Lawyers brought to light allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed by government forces during the final months of the civil war which ended in 2009.

Despite the allegations, CHOGM leaders failed to seriously query Sri Lanka over the allegations, with the only reference to the allegations coming briefly from Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard as well as the Canadian delegation.

Sri Lanka insists it will go ahead and host the next CHOGM, to be held in 2013.

"It is an absolute disgrace that Commonwealth leaders have agreed to hold their next meeting in Sri Lanka in spite of its appalling human rights record," said Amnesty International's national director, Claire Mallinson.

"They are allowing war crimes to go uninvestigated, unpunished and unaccounted for. The Australian Government as host and other members of the Commonwealth have missed a crucial opportunity to show leadership on human rights."

Amnesty International is joining calls for a full independent investigation into the final months of the Sri Lankan civil war, when it's believed tens of thousands of civilians were killed as they were trapped between the army and the Tamil Tigers.

A UN report released earlier this year found government forces were responsible for most of those deaths, and that they had deliberately shelled hospitals and Red Cross aid ships.

This is in addition to the ICJA report, confidential copies of which were provided to Gillard, Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd and Federal Attorney-General Robert McClelland on 14 October.

For the past two years, NSWYL has worked jointly with the ICJA to take witness statements from Sri Lankan Australians who bore witness to atrocities committed as the civil war drew to a close.

Amnesty International is urging Australia and other nations to show greater political will to bring alleged war criminals to justice.

"Considering the atrocities, Julia Gillard simply raising the issue of human rights with the Sri Lankan President is woefully inadequate," said Mallinson.

"Commonwealth leaders have failed a critical moral challenge - standing up for the tens of thousands of victims of this brutal conflict."

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

CHOGM inaction angers Amnesty
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Scales of Justice
‘Ego status’ compelled ex-lawyer to defraud $2.97M, court told
Debarred lawyer John Gordon Bradfield told a NSW District Court that he was driven by “ego status...
Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA), Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legislation,
ALA welcomes ‘tough’ Qld manslaughter laws
The Australian Lawyers Alliance (ALA) has welcomed Queensland’s new industrial manslaughter legisl...
Legal podcasts, tune in, microphone
Legal podcasts you have to tune in to right now
The rise of the internet has hailed in a new dawn for storytelling. Here’s our top pick of podcast...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...