Sri Lanka’s former president Chandrika Kumaratunge blamed the Tamil diaspora for “singling out war crimes” and said accountability for violations of international humanitarian law must be looked at after constitution reform has taken place.
Speaking to The Hindu, Ms Kumaratunge said that she has experience of “working with the Tamil community closely” and has visited the Tamil North-East.
“The people are not singling out war crimes,” she told reporters in Colombo. “That is the Tamil diaspora.”
Ms Kumaratunge, who now heads Sri Lanka’s Office for National Unity & Reconciliation, also reportedly said the diaspora was now “jobless” and were only talking of justice and accountability for war crimes “perhaps to get funding”.
"They r jobless now bec what thy were shouting about is being handled,they shout for something perhaps to get funding"CBK on Tamil Diaspora
— Azzam Ameen (@AzzamAmeen) February 15, 2017
Earlier this month she also stated that the involvement of courts into the probe on Sri Lankan war crimes is not needed. Instead Ms Kumaratunge said accountability can only be looked into after a constitutional reform process has been followed.
“Obviously someone is responsible for war crimes, but that has to be looked at thereafter [following constitutional reform],” said the former president.
“If you start war crimes tribunals, you can be quite sure that there won’t be a new Constitution.”