Karannagoda to take legal action | Daily News
Ineligible entry to United States after designation

Karannagoda to take legal action

Admiral of the Fleet Wasantha Karannagoda writing a letter to American Ambassador Julie Chung said, “The Secretary of State never notified me of any corruption or gross violation of human rights charges made against me”.

The full letter as follows: I write with reference to the lead story under the above title published in the Daily Mirror of April 28,2023.

According to the publication you have met Foreign Minister Ali Sabry in advance and stated that my wife Srimathie Asoka Karannagoda and I are ineligible for entry into United States upon the designation made by the Secretary of State that I have been involved insignificant corruption and or gross violation of human rights.

The sequence of the news item reveals that you have followed up the communication made to the Minister in advance by the Embassy spokesperson, necessarily acting on your instructions, informing the media of the same matter, intending thereby that these allegations will get wide publicity in Sri Lanka.

The purported designation is given a veneer of legality by reference to Section 7031(c) of the Department of State foreign operations and related programmes Act 2023, conveying the impression to the reader that it has been lawfully made following the Due Process of The Law which forms the bedrock of the Constitution of the United States of America.

Whereas, you are aware that; The Secretary of State never notified me of any allegations made against me of which he is taking cognizance.

He has not sought my observations on any of these imputed allegations; the purported designation has not been notified to me being the person affected, although you hastened to inform the Minister in advance and followed up by releasing it to the media.

In the circumstances the purported designation has been made in total violation of the Principles of Natural Justice recognized and respected by all civilized Nations and in total violation of the Due Process of the Law being the Constitutional safeguard which carries with it as the central promise an assurance that all levels of American government must operate within the law (legality) and provide fair procedures.

As you are well aware, I have not applied for Visa to enter the United States of America for the past 14 years and I have not submitted myself for any review by you or any authority in the United States of America as to my eligibility to enter that country. Therefore purported review of my eligibility has been carried out in contravention of the Due Process of the Law without any cause or reason and your hasty communication to the Minister made in advance; and the subsequent media release has been done for a collateral purpose, of giving publicity, in this country, of a wrongfully imputed significant corruption and or gross violation of human rights on my part.

Aforesaid imputation constitute serious attack on my honour and reputation in violation of article 17 of the INTERNATIONAL COVENANT ON CIVIL AND POLITICAL RIGHTS& acceded to by the United States of America, being foremost instrumental in International Law Protecting Human Rights (referred to in the purported designation made by the Secretary of State).

Article 17 cited below;

1. No one can be subjected arbitrary or unlawful interference with his privacy, family,

home or correspondence, nor to unlawful attacks on his honour and reputation.

2. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference orattacks.

The unwarranted publication made by you in advance to the Minister imputing that I have been involved in gross corruption and gross violation of human rights followed up by further publication of the same tenor by your media spokesperson acting as aforesaid, is subject to the Common Law of Sri Lanka in terms of which any outrage upon a man’s honour and good name is actionable as defamation being species of injuria. Thus the Law of Sri Lanka is in accords with Article 17 cited above and I have a right safeguarded by Article 17 (2) to seek redress in a Court of appropriate jurisdiction in Sri Lanka.

The imputation of gross violation of human rights on my part as the Commander of the Navy is totally untenable and the Ambassador of USA in Colombo Robert O Blake at the relevant time was constantly in touch with me and in fact assisted in the operations of the Sri Lanka Navy in the war against terrorism by providing strategic information and equipment which referred to in my book ‘Adhishtanaya’ and a person by the name of Senaka Seneviratne thanked Ambassador Blake for his assistance. In response Ambassador Blake sent an e-mail addressed to Senaka Seneviratne stating “Thank you for your note. Even though there are questions about helping the Navy given human rights concerns I made,the case that (a) the Navy was not responsible for gross human rights violations. And (b) it is in US interest to help stop an organizations. That view any weapons shipments to terrorists prevailed! It appears that the truth has got buried in the sands of time and a monster has been created of me as a gross violator of human rights with an innuendo of corruption.

My honour and reputation has been seriously affected resulting in extensive loss pursuant to your wrongful imputation given wide publicity by you. In this context I wish to state very briefly following; a. I served the Sri Lanka Navy for over 38 years commencing as an officer cadet and ending as Admiral of the Fleet being the highest ever rank given to a Naval officer.

b. Upon my retirement from active service I was appointed as Secretary to Ministry of Highways where I served for a period of one and a half years and the Engineers Union of the Road Development Authority sent me a letter of appreciation for my services dated December 17,2010.

c. I served as Ambassador of Sri Lanka for four years from 2011 March and Madam Kikuta, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs in Japan has met with the President of Sri Lanka and paid a glowing tribute to me and thanked the President for sending a person like me to Japan. She has called me a ‘Hero’ and the Japanese people have great respect for me for my work during the period the Tsunami affected Japan. The Secretary to the President conveyed this to me.

d. I have been serving as the Governor of the North Western Province since December 17, 2021 to date. In the absence of the Provincial Council I have been covering up for four Ministers of the Province.

“The wrongful imputations made by you has seriously affected my honour and reputation earned over a period of over 45 years of unblemished Government service. Your action is directly violating of my rights under article 17 of the ICCPR cited above and intend to seek redress through the legal process for gross violation of my human rights in terms of applicable Law in Sri Lanka”, Admiral of the Fleet Karannagoda said in his letter to the US Ambassador.



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