Concern over human rights in Sri Lanka

15 October 2020
Website note: This letter refers to a confidential report we received from trusted sources which we cannot share with the public. Supporters are encouraged to pray over this issue.

The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne 
Minister of Foreign Affairs 
House of Commons 
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0A6 
Dear Minister Champagne, 
I trust that you and your loved ones are keeping safe and well during the ongoing pandemic. We appreciate your time and commitment in serving our country as Minister of Foreign Affairs. 
I am writing to you on behalf of The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada out of a growing concern about the situation in Sri Lanka. Our international counterparts have contacted us about the rapidly deteriorating situation in Sri Lanka that involves attacks on human rights and the erosion of the rule of law. 
Please find attached a confidential report on the current situation compiled by a group of civil society organizations in Sri Lanka. It describes intimidation and harassment of human rights defenders, arrests and detentions without due process and proposed constitutional amendments that would diminish fundamental freedoms.  
These attacks on human rights are targeting religious and ethnic minorities in Sri Lanka. Our counterparts tell us that civil society organizations, Christian places of worship and institutions in particular have been visited and interrogated by intelligence agencies and officers of the Terrorist Investigation Department (TID). 
Canada has been appointed to the core group to monitor compliance with the Resolution “Promoting reconciliation, accountability, and human rights in Sri Lanka.” We ask that the Canadian representatives support the renewal of this resolution for independent monitoring and investigations. As they participate in this UNHCR session in March 2021, we ask that they keep Sri Lanka on the agenda and raise concerns about the troubling human rights situation. 
Please take steps to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms in Sri Lanka. 
Julia Beazley
Director, Public Policy 
The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada
cc. Hon. Michael Chong, CPC Critic for Foreign Affairs
      Garnett Genuis, CPC Critic for International Development and Human Rights
      Jack Harris, NDP Critic for Foreign Affairs
      Stephane Bergeron, BQ Critic for Foreign Affairs
Author: Julia Beazley