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Sri Lankan police instructed to adopt tougher measures to 'curb the drug menace'

Sri Lanka’s Defence Secretary, General Kamal Gunaratna, issued instructions to Sri Lanka’s police to take tougher measure to 'curb the drug menace'. 

This state came yesterday during a special meeting with senior officers of the Police Narcotic Bureau at the Defence Ministry and increasing securitisation by the Sri Lankan state.

This news coincided with the arrest of two people suspected of trafficking 200 kilograms of cannabis in Manner and a further two people being arrested for trafficking 10 kilograms of heroin in Rajagiriya.

Kamal Gunaratne, a former Sri Lankan military commander, is an alleged war criminal known for his leadership of the army’s infamous 53 Division during the 2009 massacres, in which tens of thousands of Tamil civilians were killed. The division has been accused of summary executions, sexual violence and torture as well as the disappearances of those who surrendered to the military.

Read more here: Another accused war criminal takes office in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka’s former President, Maithripala Sirisena, had promised to end the 43-year-old moratorium on the death penalty for drug offences and to follow the model set by Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, war on drugs.

When meeting the Philippine president early this year he stated;

“the war against crime and drugs carried out by you [President Duterte] is an example to the whole world, and personally to me. Drug menace is rampant in my country and I feel that we should follow your footsteps to control this hazard.”

Read more here:  Sirisena wishes to replicate Duterte's bloody war on drugs

Read the Colombo Page reporting here, here and here.

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