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UN rights chief lashes back at Sri Lanka government 'disinformation'

The U.N.'s top human rights official says Sri Lankan government officials have waged a "coordinated campaign of disinformation" and distortion to discredit her and her office since her visit to the South Asian nation last month.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay says she is speaking out because the Sri Lankan government has not responded to her Sept. 12 formal complaint demanding that it retract comments by Sri Lanka's Defense Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa. She says he falsely claimed that she asked his brother, President Mahinda Rajapaksa, to remove a statue of Sri Lanka's first prime minister from Colombo's Independence Square.

Pillay's spokesman, Rupert Colville, told reporters Friday that "this claim is without a shred of truth" but the "extraordinary array of distortion and abuse during her visit" continues.