Calls for Indian intervention in journalist arrest

Tamil Nadu political parties and media associations have appealed to the Indian government to secure the release of a Tamil Nadu journalist that was arrested in Kilinochchi on Wednesday. MDMK leader Vaiko, rallying along with PMK and VCK wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh saying: "Prabhakaran was a journalist and had every right to visit any country on a tourist visa and the freedom to meet people," The Chennai Press Club and Chennai Union of Journalists wrote to the external affairs ministry explaining that Prabhakaran had written a series of articles about the treatment of Tamils in Sri...

G.L. Peiris criticises 'threatening and int'l pressure'

In an interview this week to Prensa Latina, the Foreign Minister G. L. Peiris criticised the increasing international scrutiny Sri Lanka faced. Peiris reportedly said, "the threatening and the international pressure are not the path for us to go forward. The international community should give us a vote of trust, because the Sri Lankan government has the greatest will to do things right and is dedicating great resources to reconciliation and reconstruction. We have the institutions to solve our problems," "It is a mistake to apply selective and subjective standards to Sri Lanka. The UNHRC must consider the facts, by their own merits,"

CPJ calls for release of Indian journalist

The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) has called for the immediate release of Indian journalist Tamil Prabhakaran, who was detained by Sri Lankan security forces on Wednesday. "Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa continually insists that his administration has nothing to hide, yet time and time again, we see authorities harass and intimidate journalists in an effort to prevent them from doing their work," said CPJ Executive Director Joel Simon. "Sri Lanka should release Tamil Prabhakaran immediately." Calls for Indian intervention in journalist arrest (27 Dec 2013) Indian journalist...

TNA deems Sri Lanka's war census improper

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said today that the current war census being carried out by the Sri Lankan government to consolidate the number of dead and disappeared over the 20 year civil war was improper. Speaking at an after event at an annual conference in Vavuniya, the TNA parliamentarian M A Sumanthiran, said , “We feel that the census is not being properly conducted.” According the parliamentarian, grassroots representatives of the TNA in the former war zones also held similar views that the census was not being carried out properly.

Indian journalist arrested in Kilinochchi

An Indian journalist, Tamil Prabhakaran, was arrested by the Sri Lankan police in Kilinochchi on Wednesday. The BBC's Sinhala Service reported that the journalist, who had arrived on a tourist visa, had been arrested for taking photographs of military installations. He had also reportedly met with members of the Tamil National Alliance. The Indian High Commission in Colombo is aware of the arrest. The journalist was inside St Anthony's Chuch, in Ponnaaveli, in the Vanni region, when 50 Sri Lankan army soldiers surrounded the church and detained the journalist, confiscating his camera. The TNA...

Bishop Joseph calls for international investigation into Mannar mass grave

The Bishop of Mannar has called for an international investigation into the mass grave unearthed in Mannar, reported BBC Tamil . Dismissing any inquiry by the Sri Lankan government, Bishop Rayappu Joseph, said that other graves had been unearthed across Jaffna, and he did not believe the investigations undertaken were authentic. Last week construction workers attempting to installing a pipeline in Thirukketheeswaram, found the remains of two human skeletons . Further excavation revealed four human skulls earlier this week. Photograph Tamilwin According to BBC Tamil ten human skeletons have...

Tsunami victims remembered, 9 years on

Photographs Tamilwin Tamils gathered across the North-East in remembrance of their loved ones that perished during the 2004 Tsunami.

Warm wishes indeed

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said in his annual Christmas message that he sends his “warmest good wishes […] to all Christians in Sri Lanka”. "In this season of loving and giving, Christians seek to break the barriers that divide people, whether by race, ethnicity, religion, caste, wealth or social status. “The message Peace on Earth and Goodwill to all that came with the first Christmas has relevance to the world today as it faces increasing challenges of hatred, terror, national rivalry, economic crisis, climate change and food insecurity. The prayers of Christians in this...

Son of civil society activist kidnapped at gunpoint

Photograph: Tamilwi n The son of a leading civil society activist was kidnapped by masked and armed men in Jaffna earlier this morning, after his family had left the house to attend a tsunami memorial event. 22-year-old Thamilamuthan Suriyakumaran, the son of Kanthavanam Suriyakumaran - president of the Northern Province Fishermen's Federation, was alone at the family home in Point Pedro in Jaffna, when masked intruders came to the house between 4-5 am. Thamilamuthan managed to send a text message to his family, stating that 4 masked men carrying handguns had then kidnapped him and taken him to the Point Pedro army camp. President of the TNPF, GG Ponnambalam tweeted earlier that Thamilamuthan had spoken to his sister, saying that he was being held in the jungle and was ‘frightened for his life’. He also reported that the Sri Lankan police are refusing to believe his son was abducted, labelling it a ‘scam’.

Sri Lanka rejects dismissal of ethnic conflict census

The Sri Lankan government today rejected claims by the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), that a recent state led census to determine the human and material losses due to the ethnic conflict was not credible. The Director General of the Sri Lankan Census and Statistics Department, DCA Gunawardena labelled the TNA’s assertions as a ‘political gimmick, stating , “This census was not carried out in an ad hoc manner, we provided the technical expertise to the officials who are conducting the census. We are trying our level best to eradicate any duplication or gathering of false data.”