Mauritius pulls out of hosting 2015 CHOGM: PM

Published: 16th November 2013 10:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th November 2013 10:13 AM   |  A+A-


Mauritius will not host the next Commonwealth summit in 2015 as planned because of its boycott of this weekend's meeting in Sri Lanka, Prime Minister Navin Chandra Ramgoolam told British television.

Rangoolam yesterday defended his decision not to attend the heads of government meeting (CHOGM) in Colombo, saying there was "total lack of accountability" about human rights abuses during the Sri Lankan ethnic conflict.

But he said a consequence of his boycott was that Mauritius would no longer hold the next CHOGM in two years. "The tradition is that the head of government who wants to host the next CHOGM should be present in the country which is actually holding the CHOGM summit," Rangoolam told Channel Four news.

"So I have instructed my foreign minister that since I have not come to the CHOGM in Sri Lanka -- I don't want to disturb convention or tradition -- then somebody else can do the CHOGM of 2015. I will withdraw from that CHOGM."

Mauritius joined India and Canada in refusing to send a premier to Sri Lanka, which is accused of widespread human rights abuses against its Tamil minority and the killing of tens of thousands of civilians in its 2009 defeat of Tamil Tiger rebels.

"There has been a total lack of accountability and I find this totally unacceptable," said Rangoolam, whose country comprises of an estimated 10 percent of ethnic Tamils.

"We have values which are enshrined in the Commonwealth charter, we must stick to those values," he added.

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