June 10, 2009

Groups call on Japan to act

BRUSSELS, May 11 (UPI) -- Four international organizations released a letter Monday sent to Japan's prime minister, calling on him to confront the humanitarian crisis in Sri Lanka.

In the letter, the heads of Human Rights Watch, the International Crisis Group, Amnesty International and the Global Center for the Responsibility to Protect call on Japanese Prime Minister Taro Aso to use the country's influence at the United Nations to take a more active stance against the ongoing conflict between the Sri Lankan government and the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, Crisis Group reported.

The Sri Lankan army has deteriorated much of the LTTE stronghold in the northeast of the Indian Ocean country. The ongoing conflict has trapped an estimated 100,000 civilians in the violence and has caused an escalating humanitarian crisis.

The four international organizations are additionally urging Japan, the largest international donor to Sri Lanka, to increase its involvement in the country to help protect the civilians against the threats posed by the conflict.

"We believe that Japan, a powerful player on the humanitarian stage and the largest international donor to Sri Lanka, has an important role to play in saving countless civilian lives, as well as to implement aid policies that ensure sustainable peace, human rights and development in Sri Lanka," the letter said. "It is time for Japan to show that it is prepared to shoulder its responsibilities."

http://www.upi.com/Emerging_Threats/2009/05/11/Groups-call-on-Japan-to-act/UPI-77691242083777/



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