Lord Nasbey defends Lanka in wake of botched statistics by UN commission
November 5, 2017 10:56 am
Providing an exclusive interview to media mogul WION, British Parliamentarian Lord Michael Morris, Baron Naseby stated that upon the research of classified military documents of the British government, he discovered that the casualty figure of 40,000 civilians killed during the latter stage of the civil war in Sri Lanka was a guess made by the Darusman commission set up by the UN to probe the civil war.
Lord Naseby, who identifies himself as an old friend of Sri Lanka, stated that the actual number of casualties during the final weeks of the war was approximately 7000.
The 30 year civil war that plagued Sri Lanka ended in 2009 with the death of the leader of the LTTE Velupillai Prabhakaran. Following the war however the UNHRC and other international bodies have been aggressively demanding that the Sri Lankan armed forces admit to committing war crimes during the final stages of the war that includes the murder of 40,000 civilians in the north of the country.
Prominent political figures during the war including former President Mahinda Rajapaksa have been targeted as influencers of the atrocity. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa the war-time Defence Secretary has been accused of allowing a free-hand to military operatives during the latter half of the 30-year civil war.
For several years post 2009, many western nations including the UK which harbours a large Sri Lankan Tamil population pestered Sri Lanka, requiring heads of state and military personnel to answer for the alleged war-crimes.
Much to the appraisal of the island nation, Lord Nasbey dispelled the rigid stance taken by the British through his convincing speech on October 12, where he urged the West, and in particular the US and UK, to remove the threat of war crimes and foreign judges that overhangs and overshadows all Sri Lankans and their leaders.
Speaking to a WION correspondent Lord Nasbey elaborated on the botched statistics of the UN commission and the global impact it had on Sri Lanka.
He stated that he tracked the civil war carefully and could not come to terms with the figures provided by the Darusman Commission as they did not tally with the information he was receiving from within Sri Lanka.
“I requested a freedom of information inquiry which was initially dispelled by the foreign office, following which I appealed to the information commissioner who understood the motives behind my inquiry.”
Lord Nasbey revealed that he received a 26 page report of redacted dispatches sent by the British Defence Attaché. However, the report did not include the last 6-weeks of the war. He thereafter submitted a second appeal after which a further 12 pages of correspondence were revealed.
He stated that upon careful study, there was sufficient evidence to prove that no representative of the Sri Lankan government had authorised or permitted the killing of civilians during the latter stages of the war. The British Defence Attaché indicated that the number of civilian casualties was about 7000 out of which a large portion was Tamil tigers who had abandoned their uniforms Lord Nasbey said.
Following his inquiry Lord Nasbey had consulted university professors and other individuals who had investigated the incident who all confirmed that the estimated number of civilian casualties was approximately 7000.
WION correspondents reported that the UK permitted LTTE refugees to celebrate the birthday of Velupillai Prabhakaran annually raising concerns of global diplomacy. Lord Nasbey severely condoned the stance taken by the UK stating that he had informed the Metropolitan Police that the permittance of such a celebration was diplomatically wrong.
Lord Nasbey also reminded the House that it was the LTTE who killed former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. He however stated that his representation as a member of the House of Lords to amend the flawed figure of civilian casualties from 40,000 to 7000 does not mean that war crimes like the killing of three top tigers despite their surrender must be investigated.
He further lauded the efforts rendered by the current government to reconcile the northern region of Sri Lanka. Lord Nasbey stated that the LTTE must be viewed with the correct perspective as a terrorist organization that systematically killed influential and educated Tamil leaders to ensure the solitary supremacy of Velupillai Prabhakaran.