Call on the Prime Minister to skip the CHOGM 2013 meeting to be held in Sri Lanka

Last year end the Malaysian Government organised the 8th World Islamic Economic Forum in Johore. A total of 2100 delegates from 86 countries participated and today we are told that to hold this conference Malaysia spent over RM 9 million for the three days event.

Thus the debate today is for the approval of the monies which were spent last year but which had not been budgeted for!!

The organisers had been gravely wrong when they had initially invited the President of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapakesha to the Conference. After fierce objections by many civil society organizations, the organizers relented and wanted to extend invitation to the ex President of Sri Lanka Chandrika Bandranike. This was also shot down.

In the first palace, the two Sri Lankan leaders are known worldwide for having committed alleged war crimes and they should not have been invited.

Malaysia is a member of Human Rights Council (HRC) of the United Nations. In the last two voting on the resolution against Sri Lanka’s war crimes, Malaysia abstained from voting.

We congratulate Malaysia for respecting the wishes of Malaysians for not supporting Sri Lanka, as Malaysia has taken note of the gross violation of human rights and the commission of war crimes.

The HRC resolution calls for independent international investigation by allowing the framework for UN agencies to gain access into Sri Lanka to assess and monitor the promotion and protection of human rights.

Time magazine July 1 issue states "This year in Sri Lanka, Buddhists nationalist groups with links to high ranking officialdom have gained prominence, and monks have helped orchestrate destruction of Muslim and Christian property," (page 16).

Malaysia needs to be sensitive and responsible. The present Sri Lanka regime is against minority Tamils and minority Muslims. Prime Minister’s attending of CHOGM 2013 (Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting) will be seen as Malaysia's support for the leadership of Sri Lanka.

It will be a diplomatic blunder for Najib to step on to Sri Lanka which is governed by a war criminal and an enemy of Islam.

Prime Minister should skip the CHOGM meeting which is going to take place on the 15th to 17th November2013. Further, Malaysia must ask other countries to suspend Sri Lanka from the commonwealth.

M Kula Segaran DAP National Vice Chairman & MP for Ipoh Barat