16.7 C
London
Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Sri Lanka: Eastern province women take to streets to oppose sexual abuse, rape and harassment.

Women of the Eastern province of Sri-Lanka came to the streets and voiced to stop all sorts of sexual crimes is being committed against girl children. Under the cover of COVID, girls and women are subjected to undergo sexual abuse, rape and harassment.
This has become a common trend in the country and all girls and women have potential risks of sexual crimes and gender-based violence. Such issues have created fear and mental trauma among girls and women of Sri-Lanka regarding their security and protection of their lives.
Particularly the atrocity that was committed against a 15 years old girl made all Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim women to gather as women and raised their voice.
These protests were held in Trincomalee, Batticaloa and Ampara districts on 13 July 2021 and a common statement was read by the women and handed over their appeal to the  Government Agents of their respective districts.
Joint statement by Eastern province Women’s organisations:

LET US PROTECT OUR GIRL CHILDREN FROM ALL SORTS OF SEXUAL CRIMES, VIOLENCE AND HARASSMENTS

The ongoing sexual crimes and violations against girl children have made all of us to feel ashamed as a nation. The shocking and unbearable incident of selling a girl child through the social media is an inhumane activity and a grave violation against our Constitutionally guaranteed rights. Art. 12 (4) of the Constitution of Sri-Lanka guaranteed the protection and the safety of women, children and the persons with special needs.

We appreciate the actions taken by the police department to arrest the perpetrators of the crime against the girl child while, we strongly appeal the judiciary not to grant bail to any of those accused as this crime is not forgiven by any women or any person of this country who loves a dignified life.

Further, we also bring to the attention of the general public, the Executive, the Judiciary and the Parliament of this country to give highest importance to protect the girl children as the protection of girls of Sri-Lanka is seriously deteriorating.

As women’s organizations, women’s rights activists, women’s community based groups and women lawyers day to day we come across the issues related to  sexual crimes, rape, various types of sexual abuses including cyber sexual crimes and harassments committed against girls. Own homes, neighbourhoods, schools, public transport and public places have become the abusive violent killer traps against girls.

Basically, majority of the girl children of this country do not get needful protection, safety and care. Therefore, the country is in a serious situation to give highest priority to the issue and to enact strong laws to prevent violence against girls and women and to implement the existing laws compulsorily without delay.

We Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim women of Sri-Lanka have come together and place our appeal before the Parliament of Sri-Lanka, responsible government officials including the police, lawyers and the Judiciary:

Courts ! do not grant bail to the sexual offenders

Lawyers ! do not appear for the sexual offenders

Police officers! immediately arrest the accused of sexual crimes without any bias and bring them before the law

The Parliament and the Minister of Justice ! immediately create mobile courts to promptly hear the cases of sexual offences and to punish the offenders rapidly

Art. 14 o the CEDAW is discussing the development of the rural women. General Recommendation 19 of CEDAW discusses preventing violence against women. Sri-Lanka is one of the primary parties that ratified the Convention must have the obligation to protect and promote the Conventional guaranteed rights. Therefore, the Parliament of Sri-Lanka has the duty to provide highest attention to protect the girls of the rural areas from sexual violence.

Without women there is no human society, no countries or no nations. Girls are the eyes of the nation.

Sri-Lanka ! do not make our nation’s eyes bleed. Let us protect our girl children together.

13 July 2021

Trincomalee District Women’s Network
Batticaloa District “Aruvi” Women’s Network
Ampara District Women’s Network
Women’s CBOs of Trincomalee, Batticaloa and Ampara Districts

All photos courtesy of NECC.

Archive

Latest news

Related news