Sri Lanka: Domestic Investigative and Judicial Mechanisms are Being Set UP – FM Samaraweera

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[Minister Samaraweera leaving HRC premises; photo © s.deshapriya] In his addressto the 28th session of the Human Rights Council today Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said that Sri Lanka government is in the ‘in the process of setting up’  ‘ domestic

Return lands; Release Political Prisoners; – ITAK


Central Working Committee of the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi passed two resolution on 1st march 2015. Resolution 1. On this 1st of March 2015, the Central Working Committee of the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Katchi considering the changed political environment prevailing

Human Rights and 50 Days of Sri Lanka’s New Presidency – Ruki Fernando


[Jayakumari still in remand; No charges] It’s now 50 days since Sri Lanka’s new President took oaths on 9th January 2015. This is an attempt to reflect on the first 50 days of the new Presidency. It’s not meant to

Surveillance of Journalists and Media Organizations in the North Must Cease

FMM mission in Jaffna

[Sri Lanka Solidarity Delegation held a press conference in Jaffna] Continued surveillance of journalists and media organizations in the north of Sri Lanka must cease, says the international media mission to Sri Lanka. Surveillance, monitoring and following of journalists are

If They Don’t Take Me Seriously, Why Do They Come to Me? – Bishop Rayappu Joseph


[President Sirisena meets Bishop Rayappu Joseph] The most outspoken Bishop in Sri Lanka, Dr Rayappu Joseph of Mannar says a purely domestic inquiry will not be perceived by Tamils as impartial, at least at this stage. Also, what should be

Public Haranguing of IGP by Minister John Amaratunga – Kishali Pinto Jayawardena


A most discomfiting sight witnessed in Sri Lanka post the January 2015 ‘yahapalanaya’ elections was this week’s less than coherent public haranguing of the country’s Inspector General of Police (IGP) and his officers by the new Government’s Public Security Minister

How Public Funds Wasted On Presidential Advisers


By Nirmala Kannangara- When thousands of peasants struggle to find a proper meal to their children due to the high cost of living, millions of rupees of public money had allegedly been ‘wasted’ monthly by the former regime on 38

Keep 1000 Acres, Give Us Back Remaining 5500 – Vigneshwaran


Hon’ Governor, Hon’ Minister Gamini Jayawickrama Perera, Hon’ Minister D.M.Swaminathan, Hon’ Deputy Minister Mrs.Vijekala Maheswaran, Hon’ Ministers of the Provincial Council, officers of the Northern Provincial Council, other officers, my dear brothers and sisters, The change in Government is showing

Is Shiranthi Rajapaksa ‘Above the Law’?


The wife of former Minister Wimal Weerawansa, who had been charged of getting a passport with forged documents was remanded and released on bail. However, no legal action has been taken regarding Mrs. Shiranthi Rajapaksa, wife of former President Mahinda

NPC Resolution, Genocide and Reconciliation – Laksiri Fernando


The sensibility of the resolution passed by the Northern Provincial Council (NPC) requesting “the ongoing United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights Investigation on Sri Lanka (OISL) to investigate the claim of genocide and recommend appropriate investigations

Sri Lanka’s Right To Information Bill 2015 – Clearing Up Misconceptions And Recommending Revisions


by Kishali Pinto-Jayawardena and Venkatesh Nayak- Introduction. In giving necessary context to Sri Lanka’s draft Right to Information (RTI) law disseminated by the current Government in order to obtain feedback from citizens, a few matters need to be clarified. In

After Nugegoda – What?

By Izeth Hussain- The recent Nugegoda rally in favour of former President Mahinda Rajapaksa would of course have been meticulously organized, but all the same the immensity of the crowd that assembled there was beyond dispute immensely impressive. It becomes

Tamil Civil Society Forum Decides not to Give Evidence on Disappearances

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 TCSF statement: Read the full statement here:English_Translation_Missing_persons_Commission 1.The relatives of those who have been forcibly disappeared are tired of going before various mechanisms set up by the Government of Sri Lanka from time to time. No results whatsoever have been

HRW Writes to President Maithripala on Human Rights in Sri Lanka


[The Free Media Movement of Sri Lanka presents its proposals for Media Reform to the President] HRW says that ‘we welcome some initiatives your government has already undertaken, such as case-by-case reviews of those detained under the Prevention of Terrorism

National Christian Evangelical Alliance Welcomes Minister’s Move

National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka: Statement Welcoming the Appointment of a Coordinator for Charismatic, Evangelical and Pentecostal Christian Churches’. The National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL) welcomes the appointment of a Coordinator for Charismatic, Evangelical and

Sinhala and Tamil Media Lacks Professional Capacity to Use New Found Freedom

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[Photo: Tamil Guardian] Dr. Ranga Kalansooriya - Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe’s last week comments on the conduct of several Sinhala print media have generated a wider public debate mainly in the social media. Premier Wickremesinghe alarmed several sections of the

Maldives: Nasheed’s Arrest Illegal and Unjust: Little Hope of a Fair Trial


By Dr. S. Chandrasekharan – On 22nd Afternoon, former President Nasheed was arrested from him home by the Police on fresh charges of charges of terrorism. This arrest is a blatant violation of all norms of justice and fair play

The Traitor and the Patriot! – Dharisha Bastians

In 2009, some months after the war ended, media personnel were offered military tours of Velupillai Prabhakaran’s ‘luxury’ bunker and swimming pool deep inside his hideout in Mullaitivu by the defeated regime. Subsequently, the bunker was turned into a special

Protest in Jaffna Against Domestic Probe and Release of UN Report


(Bishop Rayappu Joseph speaking at the protest) Protest 2015 Members of the Tamil community protested in Jaffna on 24 February 2015, calling on the UN Human Rights Council to release the OHCHR Investigation on Sri Lanka (OISL) report in March.

Sri Lanka:Executive Powers Of Provinces Rest With Chief Ministers, Not With Governors

by Varatharaja Perumal – Function of democracy depends on rule of law and for ensuring proper function of rule of law the separation of powers is essential. In the process of progressing democratic system, the devolution of powers to the

Mulaitivu: No Election Violence; No Military Involvement – CaFFE


(Mulaitivu – 2013 photo) Mulaitivu Local Council Election 2015/CaFFE Interim Report- The campaigning for Maritimepattu and Pudukuduirippu local councils, in Mullaitivu Districts, will end today (25) midnight. Police have provided adequate security to the area and there were no incidents

100 Day Program: Transparency is a Must – Friday Forum

The Friday Forum commends the efforts of the Government to implement the 100 day program as promised in President Sirisena’s election manifesto. However it is also concerned that focusing largely on accomplishing this within the short time frame may risk

The Draft Right to Information Act of Sri Lanka


The new government of Sri Lanka has made the draft for Right to Information Act available for the people for their feed back. The draft has come under criticism from some activists  on the basis that it does not provide

Sri Lanka Mulls Future of Rajapakse’s White Elephants


(A security guard looks at the runway from within a departure area at the international airport at Hambantota ©Lakruwan Wanniarachchi (AFP/File)) (AFP) From a multi-million dollar airport ignored by airlines to a lavish cricket stadium rejected by players, Sri Lanka’s

Sumanthiran on Genocide Resolution, OISL Report and Supporting the Government


The Tamil National Alliance Parliamentarian M. A. Sumanthiran, defending the NPC’s genocide resolution as democratic and timely, emphasized on the need for the war victims to prepare themselves to gather more evidence in order to strengthen the OHCRC’s OISL report

Déjà vu: Sampanthan and Amirthalingam

by S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole- The burning in Jaffna by a group including TNA representatives of an effigy of M. A. Sumanthiran, TNA MP, induces déjà vu in me. Mr. R. Sampanthan the TNA leader and Mr. Sumanthiran took a

UN Deferral Must be Used to Make Sri Lanka War Crimes Report Stronger – Ruki Fernando


This month, the UN Human Rights Council announced it would defer publication of a major report that investigates allegations of serious human rights violations and related crimes during the last years of Sri Lanka’s civil war. The UN High Commissioner

Sri Lanka: Tamil Ex-stronghold Jaffna on the Road to Recovery ( Video)

French 24 TV video on Jaffna today. It covers day to day life of the war affected people in Jaffna, Uthayan news paper, militarisation of civilian life, fishermen in Jaffna and so on.

Army in the North : Contesting the Views of Prof. Rohan Gunaratna


[Photo by STR/AFP/Getty Images, via A Sri Lankan Quest] by Muttukrishna Sarvananthan This is in response to the views expressed by “International Terrorism Expert” Prof. Rohan Gunaratna to Zahrah Imtiaz in the article titled “Don’t Withdraw Army from North: Prof.

Two Ways to Stop Rajapaksa – Ranga Jatasuriya


It is not boredom of retirement, but insecurity that motivates ex-president to make a political comeback. The proxies of the ex-president have fired the first salvo.Over six million Sri Lankans who voted against the kleptocratic regime of Rajapaksa and many