The United Nations (UN) has reiterated its concerns on the violence ahead of Thursday’s Presidential elections, nad called on the Government to ensure an inclusive process.
Responding to a question posed at a media briefing at the UN Headquarters, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesman Stéphane Dujarric said that the UN was aware of the incidents taking place in Sri Lanka.
“Obviously, we’ve seen the recent events in Sri Lanka, even those today, and I think it makes the Secretary‑General’s call for reconciliation, political dialogue that much more important and also his call to the Government to ensure that the elections are peaceful and that they’re inclusive, including for minorities,” he said.
Just last month Ban Ki-moon had conveyed his “strong expectation” that the Government of Sri Lanka will ensure “the peaceful and credible conduct” of its upcoming Presidential election.
In a phone call with G.L. Peiris, the Minister of External Affairs, Ban reaffirmed the UN’s continuous support for reconciliation, political dialogue and accountability as the country heads towards the election on 8 January 2015.
The Government however later expresses strong resentment over the statement made by Ban-Ki-moon saying Sri Lanka is a country with over 80 years of universal adult franchise and a healthy democratic electoral tradition.
The Government had said that the UN Secretary General, who has not asked governments or leaders of many countries with questionable claim to democracy to conduct credible elections, is preaching to Sri Lanka, a vibrant democracy on how to conduct elections.