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Interrogation of Tamil politicians over P2P participation continues

Thurairasa Ravikaran being questioned by Sri Lankan police officers

Mallavi police questioned former Northern Provincial Council member, Thurairasa Ravikaran this week, obtaining a statement regarding his participation in the Pottuvil to Polikandy (P2P) rally that took place in February.

Ravikaran had previously been interrogated by Mullativu and Mankulam police about the event.

The police accuse Ravikaran of defying a ban imposed by the Mullaitivu Magistrate Court against the rally entering the territory of its jurisdiction.

In a press statement following investigation by Mullaitivu police, Ravikaran stated

"I told them that the court order was a generic one and did not include my name so I did not accept it. In addition, I told them that I engaged in the protests for my people and against the injustices perpetrated against them in a peaceful manner and without causing hindrance to anyone. I also registered the fact that since all people came together in droves to participate in the protests; I took part in the capacity that I was a people’s representative”.

Following the P2P rally, Sri Lanka’s Public Security Minister Sarath Weerasekara told Hiru TV that the government intended to file cases against Tamil protesters; adding that Tamil politicians who attended needed to be tear gassed and arrested.

Tamil civil society members, activists and parliamentarians have persistently been questioned by Sri Lankan police regarding their participating in the mass march.

The P2P rally saw tens of thousands of protesters put forward demands for the United Nations and the international community to heed Tamil calls for justice and accountability, despite facing heavy resistance from the Sri Lankan state including court orders and injunctions to block the protest. Protesters resisted intense intimidation by security forces in order to bring attention to their core demands, including an end to the ongoing militarisation of the homeland.

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