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Monday, December 11, 2023

Sri Lanka; YLA condemns the Ministry of Defense directions to shoot on sight.

Image: Ruling party MP and former Minster Sanath Nishantha, who led the thugs to attack peaceful protestors with Deshabandu Tennakoon, DIG Western province minutes before unleashing the violence. 

The Young Lawyers Association (YLA) is deeply concerned over the statement issued by the Ministry of Defense ordering to shoot persons involved in incidents of theft and harm to property. The YLA firmly maintains that the incidents of violence which began day before yesterday (09th May, 2022) and escalated thereafter were a direct result of inaction on part of the law enforcement authorities.

Violent mobs instigated by the Prime Minister and other political leaders were unleashed on peaceful protesters with the sole aim of causing chaos. Many eye witnesses state that the law enforcement watched while unarmed people were attacked by the State sponsored mobs. The violence which ensued after the 9th May State sponsored attacks was due to people losing faith in the law enforcement, that the law enforcement will not do its duty to protect unarmed citizens of this country.

The YLA emphasizes that the sole duty of law enforcement authorities, is to ensure peace and order in society with the least harm caused to citizens. However when considering the present statement issued by the Ministry of Defense, the law enforcement authorities are given wide powers without any restraint to unleash maximum repression over the masses.

The YLA believes that the granting of such unrestraint power could lead to acts of retaliation against citizens and could lead to a chain of events unleashing mass violence in society. Therefore the YLA calls upon the authorities and the Ministry of Defense to immediately withdraw the statement issued and to act with restraint in these turbulent times and honor the Fundamental Rights of citizens of this country.

The people of this country are engaged in a legitimate struggle against leaders who have looted this country, killed civilians, run down the economy, corrupted the entire state structure and broken a nation. Any attempt to crush this struggle through state backed armed violence is against the sovereign will of the people and therefore will be an act against the Sri Lankan state.

On behalf of the Executive Committee


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