Sri Lanka’s TID summons Rivira Sunday journalist over ‘LTTE resurgence’

Sri Lanka’s Terrorist Investigation Division (TID) summoned the Associate Editor of Rivira Sunday newspaper to discuss an article published last month which spoke of possible LTTE activity in the North-East. Associate Editor Tissa Ravindra Perera delivered a statement to the TID earlier this morning. The article published last month was on the reported recovery of claymore mines in Oddusuddan in Mullaitivu. “We revealed this based on intelligence reports. The public should be awake if there is any sign of an LTTE resurgence. We have fulfilled our social obligation as journalists,” Mr Perera...

British MP faces calls to resign after Sri Lankan lobbying scandal

British DUP parliamentarian Ian Paisley Jr is under pressure to resign from his post, after being found guilty of accepting all expenses paid trips funded by the Sri Lankan government, before he lobbied against an United Nations Human Rights Council resolution. Mr Paisley Jr has been suspended from the British parliament for 30 days after a damning report by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards said his actions amounted to “paid advocacy”. The DUP’s party leader Arlene Foster told BBC News NI that she had received a personal apology from Mr Paisley. However, when asked if he had her...

Jaffna Town home attacked by armed men

A gang of men on motorbikes smashed up a home in a Jaffna Town suburb on Thursday night. The men were armed with swords and also used iron rods and axes to break things in the house. They threatened the home's residents and broke the house's doors and windows and also threw a petrol bomb before leaving the vicinity. The attack took place at a home on Thamarai Road in Vannarpannai.

Release all political prisoners says Father Sakthivel

Father Sakthivel, the head of the National Movement for the Release of Political Prisoners, urged the government to release all political prisoners. Speaking at a meeting with the organisation and the leader of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), R Sampanthan, Father Sakthivel said around 107 political prisoners were currently imprisoned. The past 3 years have seen a number of protests across the North-East of families of those imprisoned calling for their release. Many have been held without charge indefinitely under Sri Lanka's notorious anti-terror legislation, the Prevention of Terrorism...

Deported Tamil refugee charged

A Tamil refugee, deported from Australia this week and detained by Sri Lankan police on arrival in Colombo, has been charged by the Sri Lankan authorities for illegally leaving the country. The offence is understood to carry a maximum sentence of a fine of 200,000 rupees and prison term of five years. Thileepan Gnaneswaran, a 30 year old father of one was deported after his application for a temporary protection visa was denied. The deportation has been widely criticised, including by the UN Refugee Agency who condemned Australia's actions to separate a family indefinitely.

No security threat in North says SL state minister

There is "absolutely no threat to the security in the Northern region" the state minister for defence, Ruwan Wijewardene was quoted by the Daily Mirror as saying. "Certain groups of people are making groundless statements to incite fear in public," he reportedly added whilst speaking at an event in Diyagama. In recent days Sri Lankan government officials have sought to reassure the Sinhala electorate that there was no threat to national security in the North-East and that there would be no demilitarise of the area or removal of army camps.

Sri Lankan Navy leaves temple building in Ponnalai after 23 years of occupation

Sri Lankan Navy personnel have returned a food hall of the Varatharaja Perumal Kovil in Ponnalai after having occupied it for 23 years. After the Army captured the area from the LTTE in 1995, the coast from Ponnalai to Keerimalai became inaccessible to civilians with only the Sri Lankan Navy occupying the region. Residents campaigned for years to be allowed back in their lands and were allowed to resettle in December 2012, three and a half years after the end of the war, although the Army kept hold of two food halls belonging to the temple. One of the halls was released two years later and...

New Facebook policy to remove 'misinformation' to be implemented in Sri Lanka first

Facebook is to implement a new policy starting in Sri Lanka and later in Myanmar where it will start removing ‘misinformation’ that could incite violence. Under the new rules, Facebook said it would create partnerships with local civil society groups to identify misinformation for removal, the New York Times reports . Facebook has been criticised for allowing misinformation and hate speech to spread on its platform. The platform’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg, defended the company’s free speech policy with regards to issues such as holocaust denial but said, “let me give you an example of where...

Appeal date fixed for SL politician convicted of murdering British aid worker

Sri Lanka’s Court of Appeal has fixed a date for the appeal case of a Sri Lankan politician and 3 others who were convicted of murdering a British aid worker and raping his Russian girlfriend at a holiday resort in 2011, Adaderana reported. Sampath Vidanapathirana, the former chairman of Tangalle Prathesa Sabai and a close associate of the former Sri Lanka president Mahinda Rajapaksa, was convicted of the murder after the British aid worker Khuram Shaikh was shot and stabbed whilst on holiday in southern Sri Lankan on Christmas Day. Mr Vidanapathirana was handed a 20-year jail sentence by the...

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