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March 27, 2014 AT 5:14 AM
The United Nations on Thursday launched an inquiry into war crimes allegedly committed by both Sri Lankan state forces and Tamil rebels, during their conflict that ended in 2009, saying the government had failed to investigate properly. By a vote of 23 states in favor, 12 against, and 12 abstentions, the 47-member U.N. Human Rights Council adopted a resolution presented by the United States. Paula Schriefer, U.S. deputy assistant secretary of state, told the Geneva forum, "The international community has become increasingly concerned by the continued lack of progress in achieving reconciliation, justice and accountability for serious allegations of violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law."