New NPC member recounts ‘unforgivable’ atrocities during end of war

New Northern Provincial Council member, Sabaratnam Kugathas, recounted his first-hand experiences of the end of the war and the atrocities committed by Sri Lankan state forces, in his maiden speech at the council’s 117th sitting this week. “I lived within the conflict zone until the end of the war itself,” Mr Kugathas said. “I directly witnessed the heinous bombings which the Sri Lankan governmental forces conducted against civilians - especially against the wounded who were admitted in hospitals, which resulted in the massacre of innocent civilians and children.” “With the escalation of the...

Militarisation of Tamil schools continues with prize-giving at Palali base

Despite ongoing opposition to military interference in schools, the Sri Lankan Army held a prize-giving event for high achieving A Level students, at the security forces' highly-criticised Palali headquarters.

Buddhist monk protests Sri Lankan President's decision to visit Hindu temple in Batticaloa

The chief monk of a Batticaloa vihara protested the Sri Lankan president’s decision to visit a Tamil Hindu temple during his trip to the city, while neglecting the other faiths.

Signature campaign calling for international accountability mechanism continues across North-East

A signature campaign calling for an international accountability mechanism continued across the North-East this week, with campaign events taking place in Batticaloa, Sankanai, Mannar and Trincomalee. The campaign was launched this week in Jaffna by the Tamil Action Committee for International Accountability Mechanism (TACIAM) and supported by the Tamil National People's Front (TNPF).

Keppapulavu families mark one year of protests against military land occupation

Families in Keppapulavu protesting against the Sri Lankan military's ongoing occupation of land marked one year of continuous protests this week.

Sri Lanka must make ‘more progress’ on commitments to UN – Britain

Britain’s Foreign Office Minister Lord Ahmad said the Sri Lankan government must make “more progress” in implementing it’s commitments to the United Nations Human Rights Council earlier this week. Speaking at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, the minister said that though 2018 marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, “this is not a moment for idle nostalgia”. “It is our opportunity to reaffirm the Declaration’s enduring relevance,” he added, stating that “We must do this now more than ever because all around the world these rights are under threat”...

US agrees to establish Peace Corps in Sri Lanka

The United States announced that it will re-establish its Peace Corps program in Sri Lanka, after the program was shut down on the island almost 20 years ago.

Militarisation games - Sri Lankan Army holds kabaddi tournament on Palali occupied land

The Sri Lankan Army held a sports tournament at the Jaffna Security Force Headquarters in Palali, an army base built on occupied land categorised as a ‘high security zone’, which remains inaccessible to locals and landowners, nine years after the end of the war.

Father in 12th year of search for disappeared son dies

The father of a forcibly disappeared Tamil died this week, becoming the eighth parent to die while searching for their child since protests began last year. 74-year-old Nagalingam Sathiyavageswaran passed away on Wednesday after being admitted to Jaffna Teaching Hospital with sudden chest pains on Monday. Mr Sathiyavageswaran had been searching for his son, S. Rajivan who was abducted by white van outside the family home in Thirunelveli, Jaffna, in 2006. The son had been abducted just 15 days after his marriage. Giving a statement at the presidential commission’s hearings in 2014, Mr...

Protests across North-East calling for end to atrocities against civilians in Syria

Tamils and Muslims across the North-East protested on Thursday, calling for an end to atrocitities in Syria.