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I. SITUATION OVERVIEW & HIGHLIGHTS
Between 1‐31 May 2011, 171 people (58 families) arrived from Menik Farm and Kodikamam Ramavil camps in their areas of origin in Mullaitivu District (Maritimepattu Divisional Secretariat Division) and Kilinochchi District (Karachchi Divisional Secretariat Division). Approximately 2,130 IDPs (620 families) living with host families also returned to their homes in Maritimepattu and Oddusuddan Divisional Secretariat Divisions (DSD), in Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi Districts respectively.
Human Rights Council
Agenda item 3
Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development
By Mervyn Fletcher
NUWARA ELIYA, Sri Lanka, 31 May 2011 - A new day beckons in central Sri Lanka’s tea estates. Mother-of-five and picker of tea, Marystella, is up at 5.30 am to prepare the family’s breakfast in their spartan, tiny house.
She gathers firewood for cooking fuel and prepares the breakfast of fresh rotis using wheat flour, water and a dash of salt. The children look on before changing into their school uniforms and gathering to eat. They add some pulses and tuck in.
An independent United Nations human rights expert has called on Sri Lankan authorities to thoroughly investigate the apparent execution of several men by Government soldiers, saying a disputed video of the incident seems to be authentic. Christof Heyns, the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, described the killings shown on the video – whose authenticity has been contested by the Sri Lankan Government – as “textbook examples of extrajudicial executions.”
Madam High Commissioner
I wish to commend the constructive manner in which you, Mr President, have been conducting the work of the Human Rights Council. Our deliberations have been guided by you with sagacity and sensitivity, aimed at achieving the objectives of our agenda in a fair and equitable manner. You have the fullest cooperation and support of my delegation for the work of the Council.
Colombo – May 5, 2011: Assistant Secretary Robert Blake, former U.S. Ambassador to Sri Lanka, traveled to Kilinochchi on Tuesday to turn over water pumps to formerly displaced farmers in the North. The water pumps are one aspect of a $5.2 million U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) project to assist recently resettled families in the North, conducted in partnership with the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the Ministry of Agriculture and the Northern Council Departments of Agriculture, Livestock and Agrarian Services.
USAID Supports Mobile Clinics
Last week the United States Agency for International Development's (USAID) Food for Peace (FFP) program signed a $1.5 million grant agreement to help more than 22,000 flood victims in eastern Sri Lanka.
Human Rights Council MIDDAY
30 May 2011
Council Hears Address by Minister of Plantation Industries and Special Envoy of the President of Sri Lanka for Human Rights
The Human Rights Council in a midday meeting today concluded its general debate after hearing the High Commissioner for Human Rights update the Council on the activities of her Office in the morning meeting. The Council also heard an address by the Minister of Plantation Industries and Special Envoy of the President of Sri Lanka for Human Rights.
Geneva, 30 May 2011
Mr. President, Distinguished Members of the Human Rights Council, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
The Government is taking all necessary measures to support those affected by floods. Arrangements have been made to provide them with shelter, dry rations, medicine and other emergency needs.
The DMC had deployed 2 Navy boats to Ruwanwella and 2 to Avissawella to assist flood victims and the government is coordinating with local government authorities, security forces and NGOs to support flood victims. In addition the DMC arranged 10 water pumps from Colombo DDMCU and 5 from Gampaha DDMCU to kegalle.
In Sri Lanka Southwestern monsoonal rain has affected several thousand people mainly in four districts in the country. More than 8600 persons have been affected by heavy rain, floods and landslides in the Kegalle, Galle, Gampaha, Colombo and Kalutara Districts, the Disaster Management Centre said.
POLONNARUWA, 27 May 2011 (IRIN) - Women could prove key to the success of Sri Lanka's rural water and sanitation projects, experts and villagers say.
As a five-year project to reduce time spent collecting water and to ensure safe drinking water jointly launched by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and Sri Lankan government comes to a close, its leaders are reflecting on the lasting benefits of their decision to incorporate women in an unprecedented way.
COLOMBO – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has today donated a number of items, including computers software and motorbikes to help support the post-harvest and local food production activities of the Ministries of Agriculture and Irrigation Water Resource Management.
The items were presented to the Minister of Agriculture, Honourable Mahinda Yappa Abeywardena at a ceremony attended by WFP representatives, government officials and the media.
A fast recovery of economic activities is taking place in the Northern Province of Sri Lanka since the end of the conflict in May 2009. In 2009, the Northern Province recorded a provincial nominal GDPgrowth rate of 14.2 per cent, the second highest in Sri Lanka.
Australia’s Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd officially launched the new overseas volunteer program, Australian Volunteers for International Development, on 26 May 2011 at Parliament House, Canberra.
The new, integrated program will make it easier for more Australians to volunteer their services in developing countries, in support of the priorities of the Australian Government’s aid program.
In the aftermath of prolonged civil war and widespread flooding in Sri Lanka, Relief International is working with community groups to meet the needs of the most vulnerable populations and help them rebuild their lives through a unique “relief to development” approach.
Having lost her crops—and thus her means of survival—when devastating floods swept through her hometown, one Sri Lankan woman named Suntharalingam devised an imaginative solution: growing limes.
HELSINKI, Finland, May 25 (UNHCR) – The UN refugee agency has completed a unique and moving series of regional dialogues with women that began in India last November and wrapped up in Finland this week.
The seven dialogue meetings brought together hundreds of women in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas and were aimed at giving refugee women a voice and an opportunity to influence change during UNHCR's landmark 60th year.
The first priority of the government after the war, was addressing humanitarian concerns to ensure resettlement and reconciliation, including early returns of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) to their homes, External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris said.