The Sri Lankan military announced that a brigadier who was found guilty by a British court of threatening Tamil protestors in London is to be promoted to Major General, on the same day that Tamil Genocide Day was being marked worldwide.
Brigadier Priyanka Fernando has been promoted to the rank of Major General, stated the military.
It had earlier announced that more than 14,000 soldiers are to receive “a record promotion bonanza” as part of the state’s “National War Heroes’ Day”, which takes place as Tamils around the world commemorate the massacre of tens of thousands of civilians at Mullivaikkal.
In December last year, the Westminster Magistrate’s Court found Fernando guilty of violating the Public Order Act, after he motioned death threats to Tamil protestors in London last year, upholding a previous ruling that stated he was not protected by diplomatic immunity.
Initially, an arrest warrant was produced for Fernando’s arrest, whilst in Sri Lanka, he was received as a hero and praised by senior political leaders. Murals have even been spotted in the south capturing Fernando pointing to a Sri Lankan flag, a gesture that he made as he signalled the death threats.
As part of the military offensive in 2009, Brigadier Fernando also fought in Weli Oya and Janakapura for the 11 Gemunu Watch Battalion as part of the 59 Division of the Sri Lankan Army, implicating himself in war crimes.The United Nations OHCHR Investigation into Sri Lanka detailed multiple incidents, implicating the 59 Division in the shelling of hospitals south of Mullaitivu.