Sathosa Ad Final Eng 1
Apr 15, 2017

No charges filed against SL soldiers accused of child abuse in Haiti Featured

Between 2004 – 2007, 134 Sri Lankan troops deployed for UN peace keeping duties were alleged to have sexually abused nine Haitian children, according to a UN internal report, published by AP.   

In its report, AP states that while 114 of these soldiers accused of committing sexual abuse had been sent back home but so far no charges have been levelled against them.

Sri Lanka Army’s response:

Expressing his views on the issue to BBC Sandeshaya, Military Spokesman Brigadier Roshan Seneviratne said  investigations are being conducted by the military regarding the allegations.

He said the Brigade Commander had been interdicted while eight others had faced disciplinary action.

Two thousand allegations of abuse

The details of the sex ring were part of a larger AP investigation of U.N. missions during the past 12 years that found an estimated 2,000 allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation by peacekeepers and U.N. personnel around the world.

AP pointed out that while of these allegations, over 300 are involving children, but said so far only a handful have been punished.

Legal procedures:

When asked why legal action had not been initiated against those accused of the sexual offences, Brigadier Seneviratne told BBC Sandeshaya that legal action could not be initiated as no case had been filed against any of them.

AL further reported that girls and boys as young as 12 years had been sexually abused by the Sri Lankan military personnel.

Even breasts not developed:

"I did not even have breasts," said a girl, known as V01 — Victim No. 1. She told U.N. investigators that over the next three years, from ages 12 to 15, she had sex with nearly 50 peacekeepers, including a "Commandant" who gave her 75 cents, according to AP.

V02, who was 16 when the U.N. team interviewed her, told them she had sex with a Sri Lankan commander at least three times, describing him as overweight with a moustache and a gold ring on his middle finger. The peacekeepers also taught her some Sinhalese so she could understand and express sexual innuendo, the AP report further stated adding that during the investigations the children had spoken to each other in Sinhala.

Male child’s testimony:

V04, who was 14, said she had sex with the soldiers every day in exchange for money, cookies or juice, added the AP report.
A boy, V09, was 15 when his encounters began. Over the course of three years, he said he had sex with more than 100 Sri Lankan peacekeepers, averaging about four a day, investigators said.

Left the military:

However, the military spokesman had told BBC Sandeshaya that he had no information in hand to determine if the allegations levelled against these military personnel by these Haitian children were true or false.

He said most of those military personnel who were charged had now left the military.

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