'PTA reform: A farce in multiple acts'

Writing in The Morning, Ambika Satkunanathan, former Human Rights Commissioner of Sri Lankan (HRCSL), explains how most of the recently announced proposed 'reforms' to the notorious Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) "already exist and are not new."

Australia: a limbo where dreams and hopes are crushed

Over the last decade, Australia has gone to disturbing lengths to ensure asylum seekers do not seek refuge in their country; most of which have been slammed around the world as inhumane. Chief amongst the dozens of critiques that Australian authorities have come under are the conditions in which asylum seekers are held in.

What next for Australia’s refugees?

Last week several refugee supporters, including myself, were arrested after dropping a banner off the rooftop of the Park Hotel in Naarm/Melbourne in protest of the plight of approximately 30 refugees who had been imprisoned onshore.

Sri Lanka’s crisis is of its own making

People are starving in Sri Lanka. The economy is in freefall as the cash-strapped government struggles to pay off its debts. The country has been forced to sell over half of its gold reserves and the prices of basic foods have skyrocketed. The pandemic has undeniably devastated Sri Lanka, but this is a crisis of the government’s own making. Instead of pursuing a “people-centric economy”, Sri Lanka’s insular policies have been military-driven, unaccountable, and detached from the struggle of citizens.

'One Country, One Law' - The Sri Lankan state's hostility towards Muslims grows deeper

Writing in the International Crisis Group (ICG), senior consultant Alan Keenan slams Sri Lanka's "One Country, One Law" Presidential Taskforce as a means by which the Rajapaksa can "divert discontent among the government’s Sinhala Buddhist base toward an embattled minority". "The Rajapaksa government is deeply unpopular, including among large sections of its core Sinhala Buddhist constituency, and desperate to divert public attention from its economic mismanagement. There is thus a clear if deeply unfortunate logic for it to bring back to the fore the best-known proponent of a theme that was...

'Like Shamima Begum, I could soon be stripped of British citizenship without notice'

Writing in the Guardian, Tamil human rights lawyer at MTC Solicitors, Naga Kandiah, slammed the British government’s proposed Clause 9 to the nationality and borders bill which could see dual nationals stripped of their citizenship without notice. The New Statement’s research, based on the 2011 census, reveals that as many as 5.6 million people living in England and Wales could be affected by the rule change. Kandiah’s piece follows the case of Shamima Begum which has been in the public focus with regards to this rule change. Begum was stripped of her citizenship when she left the UK to join...

Testimony of Ambika Satkunanathan on Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka

Ambika Satkunanathan, Former Commissioner at the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka, addressed the United States House of Representatives Tom Lantos Commission on Human Rights this week, as it held a hearing on 'Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka'. See the full text of her address and video footage of the event below.

Testimony of Sondra Anton on Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka

Sondra Anton, student attorney at the International Human Rights Clinic at Harvard Law School, addressed the United States House of Representatives Tom Lantos Commission on Human Rights yesterday, as it held a hearing on 'Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka'. See the full text of her address and video footage of the event below.

Testimony of John Sifton on Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka

John Sifton, the Asia Advocacy Director at Human Rights Watch, addressed the United States House of Representatives Tom Lantos Commission on Human Rights today, which is currently holding a hearing on 'Accountability and Human Rights in Sri Lanka'. See the full text of his address and video footage of the event below.

Jai Bhim: The film and the kerfuffle

"இடைவந்த சாதி எனும் இடர்ஒழிந்தால் ஆள்பவள்நம் தாய் தாய் தாயே!" - Bharatidasan. Four years ago, the Everglades swamp in Florida was hounded by a specific variety of snakes not autochthonous to its land. Following repeated failures to curb the exploits of the reptiles, the authorities flew in a few men from a community known as Irulas, supposedly experts in snake-catching, from a remote part of South Asia to assist them. They worked wonders. The Western media rejoiced at the mysterious ability of these tribal men to track the trails of snakes. “The Irula are world-renowned for their snake-...

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