Facebook icon
Twitter icon
e-mail icon

Tamil prisoners moved as riots engulf Welikada prison

More than 180 Tamil political prisoners have been moved from Magazine prison in Welikada after clashes between prisoners and guards led to at least 31 people having sustained injuries.

The Tamil prisoners were moved to the main complex of the prison and were reportedly transferred to another jail for their own safety, after riots took over Magazine prison.

Previous prison riots, notably in 2000, 1997 and 1983, have resulted in Tamil political prisoners being murdered by Sinhala mobs.

Several buildings have been set alight by the prisoners as they flung stones at prison guards, who retaliated by opening fire. There were also unconfirmed reports that three prisoners had been killed by the gunfire.

The violence erupted after guards launched a crackdown on drug smuggling inside the prison, with inmates claiming that food brought by relatives to the prison were banned. Prisoners were seen on the roof holding a banner calling for the removal of the prison chief.

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.

For more ways to donate visit https://donate.tamilguardian.com.