Law Society supports Sri Lanka suspension

Sri Lanka should be suspended from the Councils of the Commonwealth after being linked to serious breaches of the rule of law and judicial independence, the representative of lawyers in England and Wales has claimed.

Sri Lanka: calls for suspension

During a high-level international meeting at the 18th Commonwealth Law Conference in Cape Town, the Law Society added its voice to that of the Commonwealth Lawyers Association (CLA), the Commonwealth Legal Education Association (CLEA) and the Commonwealth Magistrates’ and Judges’ Association (CMJA), in calling for firm action against Sri Lanka following ‘repressive actions’.

Suspension

A resolution, ratified at the conference, calls upon the Members of the Commonwealth to place Sri Lanka on the agenda of the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group meeting on 26 April 2013 and suspend it from the Councils of the Commonwealth, as well as asking members to reconsider the holding of the next Heads of Government Meeting in Sri Lanka.

'Persistent harassment'

Lucy Scott-Moncrieff, President of the Law Society of England and Wales, commented: ‘We cannot sit back and watch as the independence of the Sri Lankan judiciary continues to be eroded. We cannot remain inactive as politicians fail to abide by court orders. We cannot look away as members of the legal profession face gross and persistent harassment. We remain committed to supporting those who do uphold the rule of law in Sri Lanka.’

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