Phishing attacks leads to Groundviews shutting down WhatsApp group

Attempted phishing attacks aimed at journalists has led to Colombo-based website Groundviews shutting down a WhatsApp group earlier this month, over fears of cyber attacks. According to Sanjana Hottutuwa, founding editor of Groundviews the phishing attempt stemmed from a message forwarded to someone outside of the WhatsApp group which was then traced back to the group. Hottutuwa informed Groundviews WhatsApp group members: "After careful consideration, in light of how a cloned mobile number on the original Groundviews WhatsApp updates group sent messages to others on it , I am shutting these...

Pakistan alerted Sri Lanka to Easter Sunday attacks

Pakistan’s High Commissioner in Sri Lanka, retired Major General Muhammad Saad Khattak, told a private television station that Pakistan had warned Sri Lanka of the Easter Sunday attacks, which claimed over 250 lives, but the Sri Lankan government failed to take follow up action. This follows statements from the former Sri Lankan President, Maithripala Sirisena, who denied responsibility for the attack. Sirisena claimed that he had not received prior warning of the attack and could not be held responsible. Read more here: Former Sri Lankan President denies responsibility for Easter Sunday...

Sri Lankan soldiers cause outrage after wearing boots inside ancient Hindu temple

Sri Lankan troops sparked widespread condemnation after they were pictured inside the historic Nainativu Nagapooshani Amman Temple with their boots on, breaking centuries of temple rules and tradition, whilst hundreds of devotees were refused entry into the temple grounds.

Sri Lanka’s intimidation of journalist is ‘retaliation for critical reporting’ – CPJ

The Committee to Protect Journalists said Sri Lankan authorities should immediately return the seized laptop of journalist Dharisha Bastians and spoke out against what it termed a “intimidation campaign”. “CPJ strongly objects to the seizure of journalist Dharisha Bastians’ laptop and is concerned it could further endanger her sources,” said Aliya Iftikhar, CPJ’s senior Asia researcher. “Sri Lankan authorities should immediately end this intimidation campaign against Bastians, which is clearly retaliation for her critical reporting.” Officers from Sri Lanka’s Criminal Investigation Department...

Rajapaksa slams ‘foreign and local conspiracies’ in speech to parliament

Sri Lanka’s prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa launched an attack on the previous government, accusing them of being involved in “foreign and local conspiracies”, as he called on the public to “chose proven ability over yahapalana lies and deception”. “The formation of the 2015 yahapalana government was a result of foreign and local conspiracies,” claimed Rajapaksa last week. “Their defeat in November 2019 however, did not put an end to such conspiracies.” In his address Rajapaksa accused opponents of trying to “paint a picture of authoritarian rule”, stating that there were “false reports”...

Families of disappeared honour Tamil father who died searching for son on Father's Day

The families of the disappeared in Vavuniya marked International Father’s Day with a tribute to the Tamil father who died earlier this month. The father from Vavuniya, Sinnachami Nallathambi, had been searching for his son that had been abducted outside a court. He passed away at the age of 71, when he fell from a tree in his home in Koomankulam, Vavuniya. Yesterday also marked 1220 days of continued protests in which the families of the disappeared insisted that “Tamils ​​need to focus on finding a way to head towards a safe and secure motherhood.” Earlier this month, a 69-year-old father...

Human Rights Solidarity speak on Tamil refugees

Human Rights Solidarity commemorated refugee week and world refugee day by speaking to Gayathri Thivyaa, a medical student at Imperial College London and the child of Tamil refugees who fled the genocide of Tamils in Sri Lanka. Reflecting on her own experiences as well as the experience of her parents, Thivyaa spoke about the impact that trauma has on refugees and their children, saying also that “the impact […} on subsequent generations is overlooked.” She also spoke about the hardship of Tamils in Sri Lanka as well as the difficulties they face once they come to a new country. “I’ve seen...

Gender + Militancy – PEARL speaks with Dr Nimmi Gowrinathan

Speaking with People for Equality and Relief in Lanka (PEARL), Dr Nimmi Gowrinathan, Founder and Director of the Politics of Sexual Violence Initiative and Visiting Research Professor at the City College New York, gave an enlightening discussion on gender and militancy.

EU discusses trade and debt with Sri Lankan president despite human rights abuses

European Union ambassadors met with Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa this week to discuss economic policies following the COVID-19 crisis, despite his records of human rights abuses. President Rajapaksa, formerly Sri Lanka’s Defence Secretary, oversaw a military offensive that killed tens of thousands of Tamils during the final phases of the armed conflict and has several war crime allegations against him. Despite the serious human rights abuses committed by the Rajapaksa administration, the EU ambassadors stated “pleased to meet President Rajapaksa to discuss Sri Lanka’s development...

Sri Lankan intelligence officer files a complaint against ITJP with UN and EU

Sri Lanka’s State Intelligence Services (SIS) Major General Suresh Sallay filed a formal complaint with the United Nations and European Union last week, claiming that the Executive director of the International Truth and Justice Project, Yasmin Sooka had made "defamatory remarks" in a press release outlining his role in detaining a Tamil doctor. His complaint comes after a Letter of Demand was sent to Sooka earlier this month demanding 1 Billion Rupees as damages, claiming that Sallay’s reputation had been “slandered”. Sallay’s lawyer, Pasan Weerasinghe, claimed Sooka’s remarks are defamatory...

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