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Singapore extends Rajapaksa’s leave as calls for arrests grow

Singapore has extended the stay of Sri Lanka’s former President, Gotabaya Rajapaksa by two weeks, according to Reuters, amidst growing calls for the arrest of the accused war criminal.

Rajapaksa is now able to stay in Singapore until August 11, according to two separate sources in Colombo and Singapore, who spoke to Reuters.

Yesterday a spokesperson for Sri Lanka’s cabinet announced that Rajapaksa would return to the island and denied the charge that he had fled the island. The spokesperson further added that officers would take steps to ensure "no harm is done to the former President”.

Singapore initially granted 15 days of leave and claimed that he was on a “private visit”.

The announcement comes after the International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP) filed a criminal complaint to Singapore's Attorney General, seeking Rajapaksa's "immediate arrest" for committing war crimes. 

Earlier this week, a group of 17 Tamil and human rights organizations from across the world, issued a joint letter urging Singapore’s Attorney-General's Chambers to investigate and prosecute Rajapaksa for his involvement in international crimes during the culmination of the Tamil Genocide in 2009. 

British lawmaker and Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils, Elliot Colburn wrote to the Attorney General of Singapore yesterday, calling on the country’s authorities to arrest former Sri Lankan president.

“I urge you on behalf of UK parliamentarians to take immediate action to arrest Mr Rajapakse, seize his passport, and launch an investigation into the credible allegations against him.” 

Read more here.

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