Posts Categorized: Human Rights

Immediately Release Land of the People of Keppapilavu

Statement by Civil Society Feb 17 Civil Society Statement re Keppapilavu – Final We, the undersigned civil society organizations, write this statement to express solidarity with protestors of Keppapilavu and condemn the Government’s lack of appropriate and timely response or action towards releasing their land from military occupation. 1 For over two weeks, villagers from… Read more »

UN Rights Envoy Calls for Inquiry into Abuses of Rohingya in Myanmar

Two questions loom large: Will one of the 47 member states in the human rights council put forward a resolution to form a commission of inquiry? And, if so, will Myanmar cooperate?… However, the military would be under intense pressure to cooperate with a UN-backed commission of inquiry. Refusal by the government and military to cooperate… Read more »

Sri Lanka & March 2017 UNHRC Session

Will Justice for Tamils be Delayed for Denial? by Thambu Kanagasabai, LLM, February 11, 2017 The UNHRC’S session in March 2017 is going to be crucial for the Tamils concerning the following matters:- 1. Fate of its Resolution passed on October 01, 2015 sponsored and endorsed by USA & Sri Lanka. 2. Sri Lanka’s track… Read more »

Putting the Wolf to Guard the Sheep

Sri Lanka’s Witness Protection Authority by International Truth & Justice Project, South Africa, February 13, 2017 ITJP Sri-Lanka-Witness-Protection-Report Executive Summary The new body set up in Sri Lanka to protect witnesses and victims of crimes, the “National Authority” includes three appointments made by the Government of President Maithripala Sirisena that give rise to grave concerns… Read more »

Justice Denied to Survivors of the Kumarapuram Massacre

“His name is Kamaleswaran” by Marisa de Silva, ‘Groundviews,’ Colombo, February 11, 2017 [more information at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kumarapuram_massacre] “Shoot me but, please don’t kill my children,” pleaded Kanthappoody Kamaladevi with her arms outstretched over her head, just before she was shot dead outside her home in Kumarapuram, Killiveddy, by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA). L-R (first row):… Read more »

On Keppapulavu

by Groundviews, Colombo, February 9, 2017 Residents of Keppapulavu, in Mullaitivu, have been protesting, demanding the return of their land, which is currently occupied by the Air Force. The families have now been protesting outside the airforce camp for 9 days. The struggle for the return of their land however has been ongoing for years…. Read more »

Sri Lanka to Ask UN for More Time to Probe War Crimes

by AP on Voice of America, February 7, 2017 COLOMBO, SRI LANKA — Sri Lanka says it needs more time to fulfill promises given to the U.N. human rights body to investigate war crime allegations from the nation’s long civil war, which ended nearly eight years ago. Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera told foreign correspondents late… Read more »

Draconian Law Cripples Sri Lanka’s Reconciliation Hopes

by Ruki Fernando, on his blog, February 7, 2017 “The country’s leadership needs to act on commitment to repeal Prevention of Terrorism Act” First published at http://www.ucanews.com/news/draconian-law-cripples-sri-lankas-reconciliation-hopes/78188 on 3rd Feb. 2017 In March 2014, my colleague, Father Praveen and I were arrested and detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act by the Terrorist Investigation Department,… Read more »

Co-Existence

by Mano Ganesan, via Twitter, February 8, 2017 Tamils demand #Coexistence & not mere #integration and #reconciliation ‘Tamasha'[theatrical show]. I told few DPL & int’l friends @ my ministry today. Minister of National Dialogue President, Democratic Workers’ Congress Convenor, Civil Monitoring Commission on Extra-Judicial Killings and Disappearance

War Crimes Swept Under the Carpet

The Sri Lankan war crimes swept under the carpet  by Bruce Haigh, ‘The Age,’ February 6, 2017 According to successive Sri Lankan governments the only war crimes committed during the country’s long civil war, from July 1983 to May 2009, were those perpetrated by the Tamils; aggressive denial has defined their response. The alienation of… Read more »

Reconciliation Accomplished

by Sanjana Hattotuwa, ‘The Sunday Island,’ Colombo, February 5, 2017 In 2003, aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier, the then US President George W. Bush delivered an infamous address proclaiming an end to large scale combat operations in Iraq. “Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States… Read more »

Sri Lanka’s Transition to Nowhere

Time may be running out for meaningful reforms, and transitional justice remains just out of reach. by Alan Keenan, ‘The Diplomat,’ Tokyo, February 1, 2017 Sri Lanka’s Transition to Nowhere – Alan Keenan – Diplomat – Feb 2017 The momentum of the early months soon slowed, as deep political dysfunctions reasserted themselves in the face… Read more »

The Travel Ban and an Authoritarian ‘Ladder of Violence’

by Amanda Taub, ‘The New York Times,’ February 2, 2017  WASHINGTON — History is full of examples of leaders using “us versus them” politics to paint a particular minority group as a threat to the majority’s safety, morals or culture. That history has scholars of authoritarianism unnerved by President Trump’s order to halt immigration from… Read more »

National Question and Grievances Faced by a Minority

by Dr. Nirmala Chandrahasan, ‘Daily Mirror,’ Colombo, January 30, 2017 In a recent article in the Daily mirror of January 5, 2017, titled “Let’s make Sampanthan’s New Year wish come true, the writer refers to the fact that the Opposition Leader has pinned his hopes for a peaceful and prosperous country in 2017 on a… Read more »

Report of SR on Transitional Justice on Victim Participation

by UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, Geneva, December 27, 2016 SR Transitional Justice Victim Participation Conclusions  84. The present report and the report to the General Assembly focusing on national consultation processes emphasize the importance of broad participation in transitional justice measures, including by victims. They… Read more »

Report of Special Rapporteur on Torture

by UN Special Rapporteur on torture, Geneva, December 22, 2016 SR Torture report on visit to Sri Lanka Conclusions 109. The issue of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment is part of the legacy of the country’s armed conflict, and one of the reasons why the citizens of Sri Lanka continue… Read more »

ITJPSL Welcomes Juan Mendez Report

by International Truth & Justice Project Sri Lanka, South Africa, January 26, 2017 ITJP Juan-Mendez-Report-Welcomed PRESS RELEASE: Johannesburg (26 January 2017): A UN report describing a “culture of torture” in Sri Lanka reinforced by decades of impunity is a wake up call to President Sirisena’s Government to comply with its obligations under international law and… Read more »

Hunger Strikers in Sri Lanka Demand Answers

‘Give us our children back’ by Dharisha Bastians & Geeta Anand, ‘The New York Times,’ January 26, 2017 COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — Seated on a platform outside a regional post office in Sri Lanka’s former war zone, about 150 miles north of the capital, Colombo, a mother whose son has been missing for seven years… Read more »

Sri Lankans Demand Justice as Journalists Attacked

by Al-Jazeera, January 24, 2017 Sri Lanka should form a presidential commission to investigate the targeting of journalists by the previous government, media groups said. The current government, they claim, has failed to keep its campaign promise to punish those responsible. Video at http://video.aljazeera.com/channels/eng/videos/sri-lankans-demand-justice-as-journalists-attacked/5295274508001 Also see Tamils Against Genocide 2013 report ‘Silencing the Press: An… Read more »

Foreign Judges: Sri Lanka’s Dilemma

by M.S.M Ayub, ‘The Daily Mirror,’ Colombo, January 13, 2017 The question remains as to how Sri Lanka is going to justify its rejection of foreign participation in the accountability process after co-sponsoring the UNHRC resolution The question about the involvement of foreign judges in the mechanism to investigate the allegations of Human Rights violations… Read more »