UN Interventionism and the Inherent Hypocrisy

Mr. Franche, we implore you to focus on fulfilling your duties rather than indulging in politics at the expense of the victims of Easter Massacre in 2019

2 mins read
Mr. Marc-André Franche, the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Sri Lanka.

Editorial

Sri Lanka has unfortunately become a platform where anyone and everyone feels entitled to air their grievances and baseless accusations, resembling a chaotic Hyde Park of sorts. The recent involvement of the United Nations’ top envoy to the country, Marc-Andre Franche, in commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Easter Sunday Carnage epitomises this trend. It’s perplexing to witness this event being labelled as a “celebration,” considering the profound tragedy it represents. Since the occurrence of this horrific event, there has been a blatant exploitation of victims’ sentiments by certain individuals, who have shamelessly capitalised on their suffering for personal gain. The true victims of this heinous act of Islamic fanaticism are left to mourn the loss of their loved ones, while others manipulate their suffering for their own agendas.

What’s even more disheartening is the lack of response from both the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other local authorities regarding the unfounded accusations made by this UN official. It begs the question: what is the purpose of allocating substantial budgets to maintain such state officials if they fail to address matters crucial to our sovereignty and territorial integrity? Recall the previous allegations of war crimes levelled against Sri Lanka by UN officials, which were later retracted due to lack of evidence. Yet, the irony persists as the very individual behind these accusations was welcomed with open arms by our politicians, even granting him a platform in our parliament. This paints a grim picture of the reality on the ground.

It’s evident that the local representation of the United Nations merely echoes the sentiments of their superiors, without demonstrating any genuine commitment to transparency or accountability, be it in recruitment practices or other aspects of governance. Marc-Andre Franche has called upon Sri Lanka to address its “accountability deficit” and ensure justice as the nation commemorates the victims of its most tragic attack on civilians five years ago. However, before pointing fingers at others, he should first confront the “accountability deficit” within his own organisation. It’s essential to address internal issues before criticising external entities.

Recently, a self-proclaimed whistleblower, who was also under investigation for alleged criminal activities, made sensational claims on Easter attack on a British television channel a few days after he made his statement before United Nations agency to ensure his “asylum”. His lengthy statement aimed to target Sri Lankan and Indian officials, yet lacked a shred of evidence. Despite India’s swift action and warning against such defamation attempts, the situation in Sri Lanka took a different turn. Not only were these baseless allegations broadcasted, but efforts were made to sway public opinion as well. What’s more alarming is the recruitment of both the whistleblower and his accomplice by a UN agency just months before the documentary aired.

A part of Maulana’s employment letter allegedly issued by UNHCR in January 2022

Did Mr. Franche know that the individual who aided the whistleblower was a medical doctor who provided assistance to Rilwan, the brother of Zahran, when he was admitted to Colombo National Hospital after an explosion incident in the East? Has anyone in your agency assisted the Sri Lankan government in locating this individual? Where does your “accountability deficit” truly lie? It’s worth noting that the so-called whistleblower was recruited by a UN agency and facilitated in fabricating his false statement to secure refugee status. Our inquiries to Mr. Franche’s office remain unanswered, highlighting a lack of honesty and transparency on their part. Yet, they have the audacity to lecture others on transparency and accountability.

It’s evident that due to various personal reasons, neither Sri Lanka’s diplomatic corps nor the mainstream media possess the spine to question the blatant hypocrisy of certain agencies and entities that flagrantly violate international agreements, including the Vienna Convention, by meddling in the internal affairs of sovereign nations. However, despite the reluctance of these parties, the truth remains apparent. Let us not forget the words of Jesus, as stated in John 8:7, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” So, Mr. Franche, can you claim to be without any sin? We implore you to focus on fulfilling your duties rather than indulging in politics at the expense of the victims of these heinous crimes.

Sri Lanka Guardian

The Sri Lanka Guardian is an online web portal founded in August 2007 by a group of concerned Sri Lankan citizens including journalists, activists, academics and retired civil servants. We are independent and non-profit. Email: editor@slguardian.org

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