Facebook icon
Twitter icon
e-mail icon

Tamil journalist brought before Mullativiu court after Sri Lankan navy complaint

A court in Mullaitivu resumed its trial of Tamil Guardian correspondent Shanmugam Thavaseelan on Tuesday, following a resurgence of attacks on Tamil journalists by Sri Lanka’s security forces. 

Thavaseelan was originally arrested by Sri Lankan police on trumped-up charges in April after a navy officer from the ‘Gotabaya’ camp claimed he had been assaulted by the journalist. 

Witnesses state that the navy officer had been threatening and photographing protesters at the disappearances rally that Thavaseelan had been covering at the time. The prominent Mullaitivu-based journalist was subsequently arrested and brought before the courts who postponed his trial.

Highlighting recent cases of attacks against journalists, including two Tamil Guardian correspondents, RSF called on the Sri Lankan authorities to punish those responsible for the acts of violence and to stop police intimidation and harassment of Tamil journalists earlier this year.

Photograph: Thavaseelan accompanied by Sri Lankan police. April 20, 2019 

Last year, Thavaseelan was once more held by Sri Lankan security forces, whilst he was reporting on the army’s plans to appropriate land in Mullaitivu last month.

We need your support

Sri Lanka is one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a journalist. Tamil journalists are particularly at threat, with at least 41 media workers known to have been killed by the Sri Lankan state or its paramilitaries during and after the armed conflict.

Despite the risks, our team on the ground remain committed to providing detailed and accurate reporting of developments in the Tamil homeland, across the island and around the world, as well as providing expert analysis and insight from the Tamil point of view

We need your support in keeping our journalism going. Support our work today.