Cameron to raise human rights with Sri Lanka at Commonwealth summit
LONDON (REUTERS) - British Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday rejected calls to boycott a Commonwealth summit in Sri Lanka next month because of concerns over the country's human rights record, but said he would raise difficult issues at the talks.
Rights groups have urged world leaders to stay away from the meeting in Colombo to protest against what they have described as a "human rights crisis" in the former British colony, suggesting attendance could help legitimise the situation.
In particular, campaigners want the Sri Lankan government to allow an independent investigation into allegations that government forces committed war crimes towards the end of a civil war that ended in 2009 after almost three decades.
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Monday he would not attend the summit, citing reports of "incarceration of political leaders and journalists, harassment of minorities, reported disappearances, and allegations of extra judicial killings".