Sri Lanka’s diplomat to UN is member of government death squad that murdered children

The Sri Lankan government’s proposed ambassador to Geneva is a known member of a government death squad, responsible for the murder of hundreds, including school children, said the International Truth and Justice Project (ITJP) and Journalists for Democracy Sri Lanka (JDS) in a joint press release this morning. C. A. Chandraprema was a key member of the PRRA, the People’s Revolutionary Red Army - a group that worked with the Sri Lankan military during the late eighties to quell a Sinhala uprising, said the groups. Nicknamed “Thadi Priyantha”, Chandraprema was involved with the squad that is responsible for “the murders of hundreds of people, including human rights lawyers, journalists, university students and school children”.

A Dangerous Sea Change in Sri Lanka - ICG

The International Crisis Group (ICG) has listed Sri Lanka as one of the ten countries on it’s “early-warning Watch List” given the appointment of accused war criminals Gotabaya and Mahinda Rajapaksa to the Prime Minister and Presidential position. In their report, they urge members of the European Union to reconsider the favourable trading relationship offered to Sri Lanka through the GSP+ which will be coming to review; as well as, calling on members of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to reiterate their commitment to UN resolution 30/1. They have also called for a funding review of the...

‘He knows what they did’ - Tamil families of disappeared hit back at Sri Lankan president

Tamil families of the disappeared reacted angrily to the Sri Lankan president’s assertion that the thousands of forcibly disappeared and missing Tamils “are actually dead,” stating that as defence secretary at the time of the abductions he should be fully aware of their fate.

Tamil journalists sent threats of 'death punishment' in Batticaloa

A number of journalists from the Batticaloa district were issued death threats, with leaflets of their photographs circulated warning that they will soon be executed

‘Missing persons are actually dead’ - Sri Lankan president tells UN

Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa told the United Nations’ resident co-ordinator on the island that the thousands of forcibly disappeared and missing Tamils “are actually dead”, in a widely condemned declaration on Friday. According to the official Sri Lankan president’s media division , Rajapaksa met with Hanaa Singer, where “he explained that these missing persons are actually dead”. The statement will have caused widespread offence across the Tamil North-East, where families of the disappeared have been protesting on the roadside for over 1,000 days, demanding to know the fate of their loved ones.

HRW - Sri Lanka's human rights in grave peril

Gotabaya addressing military as Defence Secretary In their annual global human rights report, Human Rights Watch (HRW), warns that Sri Lanka is in ‘great peril’ of losing ground since the election of Gotabaya Rajapaksa and subsequent appointment of several ministers who have credible human rights accusations against them. Meenakshi Ganguly, HRW’s South Asia director stated on the matter; “There is every reason to fear that any progress Sri Lanka has made in recent years in restoring basic rights and rebuilding democratic institutions will be overturned with a vengeance,” Appointment of War...

Remembering Colonel Kittu

Thursday marked 27 years since the death of Sathasivam Krishnakumar alias Colonel Kittu, and nine other LTTE cadres, who committed suicide after being surrounded by Indian navy warships in 1993.

British lawmakers join Tamils in celebration of Pongal in Parliament

British parliamentarians from across the political spectrum joined the British Tamil community to celebrate the Tamil harvest festival of Thai Pongal, at events held at the Houses of Parliament this week. Over two days of celebrations, parliamentarians joined local Tamils in traditional celebrations involving musical performances, speeches and generous servings of sweet pongal. Several lawmakers highlighted the invaluable contribution that the Tamil community has made to life in the United Kingdom, as they too dressed in tradiaiotnal Tamil outfits and took part in festivities. “We have come...

Sri Lanka to release soldier from prison for massacre of Tamils

The Sri Lankan government is reportedly set to release a soldier who was sentenced to death over the massacre of eight Tamil civilians, according to an opposition parliamentarian who applauded the move. “Now we have got information that the government has taken measures to release 34 members of the intelligence and Sunil Ratnayake, as mentioned during the Gotabaya Rajapaksa election campaign,” said UNP MP Ajith Perera. “That is how a leader who does what they say works,” continued Perera. "Therefore I would like to extend my gratitude to president Gotabaya Rajapakse and Minister of Justice...

Brother, when the army caught me, I was only 17 years old.

S. Mahendran Prison Number Y-13139 “G” Ward, New Magazine Prison, Borella Colombo-09. September 16, 2007 Brother, even when I was 17, when I used to eat breakfast, I made rice balls out of the old rice, curd, sugar, salt and banana. Brother, when the army caught me, I was only 17 years old. I’ve been in prison for 14 years now. How many people have come here and gone? Nothing at all has changed. When I turned 19 I got sentenced a life sentence and 70 years in prison. When they sentenced me, I cried, Brother. Even when my mother tried to console me, I couldn’t bear it. She said, “you’re a man...