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Fifth Anniversary of Trincomalee Students Execution

by TamilNet, January 2, 2011

Amnesty International (AI) has embarked on a postcard campaign "to use this case as an example of the ongoing lack of accountability in Sri Lanka," according to the U.S. Director of Amnesty Jim McDonald. AI researchers plan to use the campaign as the focus of a broader effort to highlight the need for an independent international investigations into Sri Lanka's war crimes.

TAG report on Trinco 5 execution Trinco 5

As relatives of the five Trincomalee students, who were shot dead execution style by Sri Lanka soldiers on January 2nd 2006, prepare to remember the fifth anniversary and mourn the death of their children, Dr. Kasipillai Manoharan, the father of Ragihar, one of the students killed, appealed to international rights groups including the UN Human Rights Commission to investigate the crime and to provide justice to his lost son and his friends who were killed.

Information, recently made public, from the US embassy in Colombo, which has highlighted that ruling Rajapakse family sanctioned extra-judicial killings in the NorthEast, adds further obligation to international human rights watchdogs to take steps to advocate independent international investigations into war crimes.

Journalist Sugirdharajan who took photographs showing that students were killed at point-blank range was gunned down on the 23rd January near the Governor's Secretariat.

US-based pressure group Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) submitted an affidavit containing the personal testimony of Dr Manoharan and two detailed reports of evidence collected on the killings by a Rights Group whose members are in self-exile due to threat to their lives, as record of evidence to the Dublin war-crimes tribunal hearing in January 2010.

The names and the date of birth of the five students killed on 2nd January 2006 in Trincomalee, a big harbor town under the control of and heavily garrisoned by the Sri Lanka security forces are:

Manoharan Ragihar 22.09.1985
Yogarajah Hemachchandra 04.03.1985
Logitharajah Rohan 07.04.1985
Thangathurai Sivanantha 06.04.1985
Shanmugarajah Gajendran 16.09.1985

Dr. Manoharan's efforts drew death threats from Sri Lanka military, widely acknowledged to be responsible for the crime, forcing the family to flee Sri Lanka, and seek safety in the U.K.

Investigations by the Sri Lanka President appointed Commission of Inquiries (CoI) were suspended when witnesses appearing remotely in video conferencing system threatened to expose Colombo's complicity in rights violations. In addition, Sri Lanka President intervened to force the resignation of a Tamil member of the committee citing conflict-of-interest, rendering the CoI ineffective.

Amnesty International (AI) has embarked on a postcard campaign "to use this case as an example of the ongoing lack of accountability in Sri Lanka," according to the U.S. Director of Amnesty Jim McDonald. AI researchers plan to use the campaign as the focus of a broader effort to highlight the need for an independent international investigations into Sri Lanka's war crimes.

Chronology:
02.01.11  Fifth Anniversary of Trincomalee Students executio..
17.10.10  Amnesty to begin campaign on SLA execution of Trin..
19.01.10  Trinco executions added to Sri Lanka's war crimes ..
02.01.10  Fourth Anniversary of Trinco Students' extra-judic..
13.09.08  A family's search for justice
14.03.08  SL Minister implicated in bribe attempt to silence..
28.06.06  Protect witnesses in Trinco killings, Rights Group..
15.02.06  Remembrance day for slain students held in Trincom..
18.01.06  Trinco students died due to gunshot injuries- Magi..
08.01.06  STF fired at students in Trinco- paper
05.01.06  Large crowd partake in students funeral procession..
05.01.06  Security strengthened for students' funeral, harta..
04.01.06  Trincomalee students died of gunshot wounds- Medic..
03.01.06  Civil group calls for general shut down, demands S..
03.01.06  Trinco Students' funeral to be held Thursday
03.01.06  TNA accuses Security forces of killing Tamil youth..
03.01.06  Trinco Magistrate orders release of bodies after p..
03.01.06  Trincomalee in shock over killing of students
02.01.06  Five killed, two wounded in Trincomalee grenade at..

Related Articles:
14.10.10   HRW, ICG, Amnesty reject invite, slam LLRC
20.06.10   Alston assails Sri Lanka's "Reconciliation" commission

External Links:

Amnesty:   Commission of Inquiry on Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation