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'Intimidation, harassment and surveillance' threatens memorial events – Adayaalam

The Adayaalam Centre for Policy Research (ACPR) condemned efforts by the Sri Lankan government to repress memorialisation efforts by Tamils, after a Sri Lankan court ordered a stay against a memoiral event planned by Tamil civil society for tomorrow.

“Over the past month, Tamil civil society activists involved in memorialisation work have been repeatedly visited and interrogated by military intelligence and police,” said ACPR in a statement released today.

In particular, the statement highlighted the summoning of two civil society activists by Sri Lankan police in Mullaitivu and “a letter from the Mullaitivu Magistrate’s Court ordering a stay of the memorialisation event Tamil civil society was planning for May 18th”.

“Tamils living in the North-East of Sri Lanka are still not permitted to openly and freely commemorate those who died,” continued the statement. “Rather, the Sri Lankan state continues to espouse and promote the notion that May 18th, a day of mourning for Tamils, is a day of celebration .”

For eight years, the state has forced this narrative through intimidation, harassment and surveillance of any civil society activists, politicians and communities that try to hold memorial events on this day. As evident by incidents over the past month, these efforts have clearly not changed under the post-January 2015 ‘national unity government’.”

See the full text of the statement here.