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Further arrests by Sri Lankan police over Mullaitivu protest

The Sri Lankan police have arrested at least four more people in the middle of the night, who were involved in the ongoing protest against illegal fishing by Sinhala fishermen in Mullaitivu. 

The Karaithuraipattu Divisional Council (Prathesa Sabai) member Mariyanayagam Thommaipillai, as well as three protesters, Vincent D Paul Arulnathan, Gerrard Rayan and Thileepan have been arrested. 

Yesterday the Northern Provincial Council member, T. Ravikaran, has been arrested and later released on bail. 

Police said he was arrested in connection with vandalism of government property, referring to a protest by Tamil fishermen outside the district’s office of the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.

Local fishermen launched a protest on August 2, accusing officials from the department of taking bribes by Sinhala fishermen to allow them to engage in illegal practice. 

Protesting fishermen demanded that officials come out and listen to their demands. When none came out, protestors broke a police barricade and entered the building.

Since then the fishermen have been protesting continuously demanding that action is taken against illegal fishing by Sinhala fishermen.