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Sri Lanka’s CID withdraws summons for BBC journalist

Sri Lanka’s Criminal Investigations Department (CID) has withdrawn a summons issued for BBC journalist Azzam Ameen, after he was asked to respond to the Cyber Crimes Unit.

The BBC journalist had been asked to report to the CID over a tweet he sent in response to another tweet, which was apparently mistakenly sent out by the official Sri Lankan President’s Media Division account.

The official account had originally tweeted:

“You are a wonderful speaker. But how do you ensure they turn into action. Show by doing!”

Mr Ameen tweeted a screenshot of it, adding “Advice to President Sirisena from his own @PMDNewsGov”.

After being called by the CID, the Colombo Gazette reported that there was “pressure from President Maithripala Sirisena and others in the Government and civil society”.

The next day, Mr Ameen tweeted

“I was informed by the Police via phone and through a letter this morning that it is not necessary for me to visit the CID. They regretted any inconvenience. I am grateful to those who expressed their support to me in many ways on this issue.”