The Sri Lankan Muslim Media Forum expressed their disapproval over the attacks on journalists in the Tamil homeland this week and insisted that they “strongly condemn these two incidents”.
Kanapathipillai Kumanan and Shanmugan Thavaseelan, two Tamil Guardian correspondents who went to collect information regarding illegal logging and timber smuggling in the Murippu forest reserve in Mullaitivu, were beaten with metal rods and injured by fraudulent traders on Monday (October 12th). Both journalists have previously faced threats and intimidation for their work, including from the Sri Lankan security forces. They are currently receiving treatment at Mullaitivu Hospital.
M.H. Yusuf Akbopara, an independent journalist who went to Trincomalee to report an accident in Kantalai was also assaulted earlier this week, also had to be hospitalised. His camera was also taken off him.
The Sri Lankan Muslim Media Forum has called on the police to “take action against such individuals who obstruct journalists from freely carrying out their jobs.”
See the full statement here.
In response to these incidents, the Jaffna Press Club held a protest in Mullaitivu yesterday (October 15th), demanding press freedom.