In an article published on Wednesday, the Associated Press detailed ongoing allegations of rape and torture of Tamil men by Sri Lankan security forces that are said to have taken place between 2016 and July this year.
Based on the interviews with 20 men and a review of 32 medical and psychological reports, AP noted, "Raped, branded or beaten repeatedly, more than 50 men from the Tamil ethnic minority seeking political asylum in Europe say they were abducted and tortured under Sri Lanka’s current government."
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Speaking to the news wire, Piers Pigou from the International Crisis Group said, "There's a level of pervasion and abuse which you rarely see, certainly in other cases I've dealt with around the world, and reflects a sickness at the heart of the Sri Lankan security services which appears to be quite common."
The Sri Lankan authorities have rejected the reports as fabrication.
The army commander, Lt Gen Mahesh Senanayake was quoted by AP as saying, "there are people who come back and make up these stories, especially people who are living in Europe."
"I'm very confident on what I say, because army was not involved and as for that matter I'm sure that police also were not involved," he said, adding, “There’s no reason for us to do that now.”
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, was quoted by AP as saying, "while the UN is unable to confirm this until we mount an investigation, clearly the reports are horrifying and merit a much closer inspection from our part, especially if they occurred in 2016 and 2017."