Formal complaint filed to prevent Sri Lankan military land grabs in Mullaitivu

Former Tamil National Alliance MP S Sivamohan has issued a complaint letter with the Mullaitivu District’s election office and the Mullaitivu District Secretary, requesting them to take immediate action to stop the Sri Lankan military seizing private land. After issuing the letter, Sivamohan told reporters, “It has come to our attention that attempts are being made by the Sri Lankan Army to take possession of lands which Tamil people have for many years been occupying, and lands which have been requested to be released from the Forest Department.” He said that he has filed a complaint letter...

Rajapaksa lashes out at Sri Lanka’s Central Bank and demands action within 24 hours

Sri Lanka’s president Gotabaya Rajapaksa lashed out at the country’s Central Bank as he met with senior officials in Colombo today, demanding action within 24 hours as the economic crisis on the island continues to worsen. In a press release from the President’s Media Division , Rajapaksa slammed the bank, stating it had “not extended its support” and demanded they “explain reasons for their failure” . “The Central Bank of ours has not put forward a single proposal to rebuild the economy,” said Rajapaksa. “The Government will have to take the blame for the economic slowdown due to this...

Sri Lankan CID seizes journalist’s laptop in Colombo raid

Officers from Sri Lanka’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) raided the Colombo residence of journalist Dharisha Bastians and seized her laptop earlier this month, raising concerns over the safety of her sources. Bastians, who is also a correspondent for the New York Times and former chief editor of the Sunday Observer, said the raid happened earlier this month “after two separate attempts to obtain the device without a court order”. “For several months now my name has been linked to an ongoing criminal investigation into an alleged abduction that took place in November 2019,” she said...

TNA will support Rajapaksa regime if Sri Lanka will 'fulfil the political aspirations of Tamils'

M A Sumanthiran, a spokesperson for the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said the party is ready to support a government led by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, providing Sri Lanka is willing to "fulfil the political aspirations of Tamils," in a statement ahead of this year's parliamentary elections. During a media briefing held on the 11th of June, at his Jaffna home, Sumanthiran announced: “If the present Government comes forward to fulfil the political aspirations of Tamils through a new Constitution, the TNA will extend its support to gain a two-thirds majority in Parliament.” This pledge to...

Sri Lankan intelligence chief takes legal action against ITJP over 'defamation' claim

A Sri Lankan Major General Sallay who stands accused of a number of abuses including the reported forced confession and denial of medical treatment of a Tamil doctor has sent a Letter of Demand to Executive director of the International Truth and Justice Project, Yasmin Sooka, claiming that the organisation had made "defamatory remarks". The Letter of Demand details apparent "defamatory statements" made by the ITJP earlier this month. Sallay's letter refers to the information released regarding threats of imprisonment made to Dr Thurairajah Varatharajah and his family forcing them to make...

Tamils protest against illegal Sinhala settlements in Kudaaruppu

Tamil fishermen and members of the Tamil National People's Front protested against illegal state sponsored Sinhala settlements in Kudaaruppu, Vadamarachi East today. Ignoring a court order, the Sinhala fishermen set up huts along the Kudaaruppu coast in order to harvest sea cucumbers. The Sinhala settlers claim that they were given permission to set up the huts from Sri Lanka's Ministry of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.

‘No place for soldiers: the militarisation of Sri Lanka’s schools’ – Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice

Graphic by Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice The militarisation of the education sector in the North-East “raises important questions about the risks posed to child welfare” and wider implications for economic development says the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice. “Drawing on insights from Tamil activists working in the North and East, we find evidence that this engagement is perceived as a means of social control and surveillance by war affected communities, with the focus on children seemingly designed to help entrench and normalise wider patterns of militarisation,” they...

Sri Lanka PM holds talks with tourism industry

Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Mahinda Rajapaksa, has held talks with representatives of Sri Lanka’s tourism and hotel sectors, as he promises to reopen tourism in August. Sri Lanka’s economy has significantly shrunk as a result of the coronavirus and has declined by 1.5% in 2020. Since 18 March, Sri Lanka has not seen any new tourists. Mahinda Rajapaksa was quoted saying: “The Government has decided to take steps to reinstate the tourism industry and agreed to provide grants. I also focused on issues such as the VISA cost, facilities for the tourists in the country, and guidelines to follow when...

Swiss Tamils show solidarity at Black Lives Matter protests

Tamils joined thousands of protesters in solidarity at Black Lives Matter protests across Switzerland.

Sri Lankan police tear down 'illegal election propaganda'

Sri Lankan police have commended a special operation to remove posters, banners and advertisements relating to the upcoming general election as part of an island-wide project to curb “illegal election propaganda”. SP Jaliya Senaratne, a spokesman for Sri Lanka’s police, has stated that active measures will be taken to stop all illegal propaganda activities and those engaging in such activities will face legal action. Opposition politician, Shiral Lakthilaka, has warned that government is increasing surveillance of civil society actors and want to post intelligence officers in every polling...

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