Labour have called on Foreign Secretary William Hague to ensure the Commonwealth Games are not overshadowed by controversy over the presence of the president of Sri Lanka.

Mahinda Rajapaksa's regime is accused of committing appalling human rights abuses against its own people.

Despite the allegations, and demands for an international inquiry, President Rajapaksa last year became the chair of the Commonwealth, amid an international outcry.

Police have already warned that there could be protests on the streets of Glasgow if he attends this summer's Games.

Labour have now written to Mr Hague demanding to know how the Coalition plans to ensure the event is not hit by controversy.

The party is also concerned about the possible role the Sri Lankan president would play in other events planned around the Games.

These include a Commonwealth commemoration ceremony to mark the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War in Glasgow Cathedral.

In the letter to Mr Hague, shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander writes that the Games "will be a proud moment for Scots and for the city of Glasgow in particular.

"Yet this world-class sporting celebration risks being overshadowed by questions raised by the possible attendance of Sri Lanka's President in his capacity as chairperson-in-office of the Commonwealth."

Mr Alexander questioned what steps the Foreign Office was taking to help ensure that the possible attendance of President Rajapaksa did not harm the Games.

Campaigners have previously called on the Coalition Government to prevent Sri Lanka attending the Glasgow Cathedral service.

Last year, Amnesty International Scotland said that ministers should consider whether it was appropriate to invite Sri Lanka to the event in light of its human rights record.

The organisation added that it would be "ironic" if an event to remember the human cost of conflict was overshadowed by a regime accused of war crimes.

The Sri Lanka campaign for Peace and Justice also warned that commemoration was part of the process of reconciliation, a process it said President Rajapaksa was preventing from taking place in the north of Sri Lanka.

The Glasgow Cathedral event, to be followed by a wreath-laying at the Cenotaph, is designed to be a focal point of activities to mark the centenary of the start of the First World War.

On a visit to the country last year, David Cameron described allegations of mass slaughter in the final weeks of Sri Lanka's 26-year civil war as "appalling" and "chilling".

The Prime Minster gave the Sri Lankan regime a deadline of March to launch an internal independent inquiry into allegations of human rights abuses.

But the government refused and earlier this month also announced that it would take no part in an investigation launched by the UN Human Rights Council.

Labour opposed President Rajapaksa assuming the position of chairperson-in-office of the Commonwealth last year.