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Sri Lanka bans May 18 remembrance events in Mullivaikkal

Updated 10:30 17.05.15

A Sri Lankan court has banned the commemoration of May 18 at Mullivaikkal, the scene of the worst atrocities during the last phase of the armed conflict in 2009.

Members of the Northern Provincial Council and the Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF) have been informed of the ban by Mullaitivu Magistrate Court, who said no events are allowed to be held in Mullivaikkal for a further 14 days.

NPC Councillor for Mullaitivu T Ravikaran said the police delivered a letter to his house at around 21:30 on Saturday, prohibiting them from holding the event. He then contacted a senior police official, who informed him it was an order from the court, the councillor told the Tamil Guardian in the early hours of Sunday.

The TNPF also received a letter from the Mullaitivu Magistrate’s Court on Saturday, banning the organisation from hosting the event in the village which saw the end of the armed conflict and the massacre of thousands, on May 18. When the TNPF inquired into the reasons behind the ban, TNPF leader Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, was told that the event risked causing a ‘breach of peace.’

"Police said that there is another org that wants to commemorate same event in Mullaitivu which might cause a breach of peace," Mr Ponnambalam said on Twitter.

"When I queried whether the other organisation has also been banned from commemorating the event, the police refused to answer," he further said.

Chief Minister CV Wigneswaran sent out invites for the event last Thursday, stating it was to remember "our kin who lost their lives in the last phase of the war".

Letter detailing ban of Mullivaikkal event sent to the TNPF (Source: @GGPonnambalam)

Chief Minister CV Wigneswaran's invite to the May 18 remembrance event in Mullivaikkal (Source: TamilNet)

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