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Sri Lanka's proscriptions do not constrain your freedoms, Australian govt tells diaspora groups

The Australian government reassured Tamil diaspora groups based in the country that Sri Lanka's listings of Tamil diaspora groups as terrorists "do not constrain the freedom of these groups and individuals to express their views and to operate in the Australia in accordance with Australian law" and criticised the move as not conducive towards reconciliation.

"I can assure you the Australian government strongly supports the right to freedom of expression and we do not consider targeting these Tamil diaspora organisations and individuals is conducive to reconciliation in Sri Lanka," Australia's Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Senator Brett Mason said in a letter addressed to one of the groups proscribed, Australian Tamil Congress (ATC).

Noting also the proscription of the Tamil Youth Organisation and individuals residing in Australia, Senator Mason, went on to say:

"Senior Australian officials have directly registered with the Sri Lankan government Australia's concerns on this issue and sought clarification from Sri Lankan counterparts, including on practical implications of the listings."

"I would refer you and other ATC members to Australia's travel advice for Sri Lanka, which was reissued on 9 April to highlight that the Prevention of Terrorism Act remains in place in Sri Lanka, and permits prolonged detention without charge or trial."

See full letter here.

Related articles:

UK ‘concerned’ about ban on diaspora groups and arrests of activists (13 May 2014)

Sri Lanka's diaspora ban has 'no legal effect in Canada' says Foreign Affairs Minister (30 April 2014)

Diaspora orgs proscription should not be used to stifle free speech and legitimate criticism, UK tells Sri Lanka (02 April 2014)
Diaspora groups reject SL ban, vow to continue struggle (02 April 2014)

ICG, CPA criticise proscription of diaspora groups (03 April 2014)

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