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'International pressure crucial for repeal of PTA' – Sugash Kanagaratnam

Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF)’s legal advisor and Tamil lawyer, Sugash Kanagaratnam insisted that “international pressure is crucial for the repeal of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA).”  

During a press conference last month, he said: 

“Whilst the international pressure is crucial in the repeal of PTA, it is equally important for diaspora Tamils and Tamils across the North-East to unite together and voice against the PTA.”    

Prominent Muslim human rights lawyer, Hejaaz Hizbullah and many Tamil political prisoners, are languishing in prison as they are held under Sri Lanka’s draconian and internationally condemned PTA.  “Sri Lanka is confused as to what constitutes terrorism and cannot define what terrorism is. The [PTA] is a tool used for years to suppress those who voice out against the ruling government. It is purely politically motivated. Many political prisoners have not even been given fair trials.” he added.

Kanagaratnam stressed the importance of conducting a “full-fledged international inquiry to repeal the PTA altogether by applying pressure through international bodies such as the United Nations”.

Earlier this year, Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran stated “You cannot amend the PTA, you have to repeal the PTA. The whole basis, the foundation of the law is flawed,” he said and noted the draconian use of the PTA to torture detainees and obtain admission evidence.

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