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Sri Lankan Human Rights Commission to investigate death of man in custody

The Sri Lankan Human Rights Commission is set to investigate the death of Shamsudin Mohammad Ramzan, who died in Mannar Hospital whilst under police custody, the Commission’s Northern Province Coordinator T.Kanagaraj said on Sunday. 

The Police arrested Ramzan,along with another person, on Friday, October 1. 

Mannar Police inspector said that a request has been made for an autopsy report and arrangements have been made to obtain a confession from another person arrested.

The complaint has been registered as a personal motion of the Commission under Section 14 of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka Act No. 21 of 1996 and investigations have been commenced.

This death follows a damning report by Human Rights Watch which has called on Sri Lanka's international partners to "suspend their engagement with abusive Sri Lankan law enforcement agencies until there is demonstrated the political will to address the situation".

The report detailed a litany of abuses committed by Sri Lanka's police including police brutality, arbitrary arrests and extrajudicial executions.

“Sri Lanka’s police are increasingly killing and abusing people under cover of the Covid-19 pandemic measures and an anti-drug campaign,” the report stated.  

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