The European Union expressed on 20 August its concerns by the appointment of Lieutenant General Shavendra Silva as Army Commander.

Silva’s name was mentioned in the resolution passed by the UN Human Rights Council in 2013, alleging rights abuses by the Sri Lankan Army, which the country’s army has denied.

“We fully share the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet‘s serious concerns about the appointment of Lieutenant-General Shavendra Silva as Commander of the Sri Lankan Army, given the allegations of grave human rights and humanitarian law violations against him”, reads the joint statement issued by the Delegation of the EU in agreement with the Embassies of Germany, Italy, Netherlands, the UK High Commission, the Embassies of Norway and Switzerland.

“The promotion of Lieutenant-General Silva to the post of Army Commander calls into question Sri Lanka’s commitments to the UN Human Rights Council, as recently as March 2019, to ensure justice and accountability. “, the statement reads.