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Sri Lankan police block Mullivaikkal memorial in Batticaloa

Members of the Tamil National People’s Front (TNPF) alongside religious leaders and civil society were blocked from holding a vigil to mark the Mullivaikkal massacres in Batticaloa this morning.

Sri Lankan police and military officers confronted the group of around ten people who had planned to hold a candle-light vigil near the new delta lagoon in Batticaloa at around 7.30am.

Despite the vigil organiser’s attempts to negotiate, assuring that physical distancing measures would be observed, and even suggesting that the vigil could be slimmed down to just a minute’s silence, police officers flat out refused to let the group proceed.

Police produced the TNPF’s permission request letter, and scribbled a refusal at the bottom of the letter, before threatening the group to leave the area.

Police once again disrupted the group as they were answering questions from journalists further away. Journalists were also threatened and warned to leave the vicinity.

Police officers and troops were then deployed to patrol the area for further surveillance.


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