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JOINT STATEMENT: Sunila, Nimalka and Saravanamuttu
23rd March 2012, Colombo, Sri Lanka: As the three Sri Lankan human rights defenders who have come most under attack by the state media in Sri Lanka in the past week, because of our active involvement with the on-going session of the UN Human rights Council in Geneva, we feel compelled to issue this statement of clarification.
Read More >> (2012-03-24)
There is an ongoing media campaign against some key Human Rights workers and the NGOs who have spoken out in favor of the proposed resolution on Sri Lanka at the sessions of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. The campaign to vilify and incite hatred towards these NGOs and human rights activists in the context of the sessions of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva is of particular concern as it involves the use of the state controlled media.
Read More >> (2012-03-22)
Civil society urges government to stop hate campaigns and protect human rights defenders
In the backdrop of the resolution on Sri Lanka being discussed in Geneva and the expected vote on the resolution this week, the Sri Lanka Government and its propaganda teams have intensified an extremely malicious hate campaign against human rights defenders who express their views on accountability and governance issues in Sri Lanka.
Read More >> (2012-03-22)
Ensure security of Herman Kumara and Anura Roshantha
We, the undersigned civil society organisations, are deeply disturbed by the threats faced by Mr. Herman Kumara of NAFSO and Mr. Aruna Nishantha Fernando of All Ceylon Fisher Folk Federation (ACFFF), including an attempt to abduct him, and condemn these attempts to stifle democratic rights and silence activists.
Read More >> (2012-03-21)
The Rule of Law and Democracy in Sri Lanka
I realize at the very outset that a conversation on rule of law and democracy in Sri Lanka would be objected to by different persons for several reasons. One group considers this conversation as largely irrelevant. Their position is that both rule of law and democracy are extremely difficult to achieve, and even impossible, in Sri Lanka. Their position is based on the perception that things have gone too far and that recovery is a Herculean task. I believe that a very large part of the population in all communities and almost the entirety of the more educated sections of Sri Lanka share this point of view to some extent or another.
Read More >> (2012-03-21)
Rupee Devolution May Lead to Malnutrition and starvation Among the Poor
The value of the rupee came down to 131 for a US dollar. This is the hlowest point reached relating to the value of a rupee ever. In all likelihood, it will go up further even though by artificial means, it may be brought down a little now and then. Thus, the high devaluation of the rupee has come to stay.
Read More >> (2012-03-20)
LLRC Recommendations should be implemented to establish Law and Order in this chaotic society
The Resolution that is proposed to be taken up at the 19 Session of the UNHRC in Geneva on war crimes allegations and accountability issues since the war concluded in May 2009, wants the Sri Lankan government to provide an assurance it would implement all recommendations made by the LLRC appointed by the President as per his powers vested in the Constitution.
Read More >> (2012-03-14)
Lawyers Call for an Immediate Halt to Ongoing Abductions
'Lawyers for Democracy' (LfD) is gravely concerned with the breakdown of law and order and the rising cases of abductions in Sri Lanka. On 11th March 2012 media reported of the failed incident of a 'white van' abduction in Kolonnawa/Wellampitiya where the suspects were subsequently handed to the police by the public. LfD has since come to learn that the police have released the suspects at the order of a senior police officer without producing them before a court of law.
Read More >> (2012-03-14)
Letter form 31 Catholic clergy from North to the UNHRC members
We the undersigned, endorse the concerns and calls made in the letter of 1st March 2012 to the President and Members of the UN Human Rights Council by 31 Catholic clergy from Northern Sri Lanka, including the Bishop of Mannar.
Read More >> (2012-03-12)
Discrimination and violence hamper gender equity
Today marks the International Women's Day, a day to reflect on the gains achieved by women in the respect and protection of their rights and to denounce the places in which those rights are too frequently trampled on. In its 1977 resolution 32/142, the United Nations General Assembly called for the proclaiming of a UN Day for Women's Rights and International Peace to "create favourable conditions for the elimination of discrimination against women and for their full and equal participation in the social development process"
Read More >> (2012-03-10)
FTZ attack: Court allows 13 FR petitions
The Supreme Court yesterday granted leave to proceed with the 13 fundamental rights petitions filed by Katunayake Free Trade Zone workers over the alleged police attack where one worker died from gunshot injuries in May last year.
Read More >> (2012-03-06)
Herman Kumara tells the story of the attempted abduction and continuing threat to his life
In a written statement that was released earlier on the 28th of February 2012. I released information about the different threats to my life and intimidation I have been subjected too in the last few days. After leaving for Rome on the 18th of February 2012 to take part in Farmer Forum organized by the United Nation’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). I arrived back at the Katunayake Airport, Sri Lanka on the 24th of February 2012 at 1.30PM on board flight EK348 from Rome.
Read More >> (2012-03-05)
An elderly widower was tortured by the Marawila Police - AHRC UAs
JP Samson Kulatunga (62) of No: 23, Ihala Haththiniya, Marawila in the Puttalam District, was tortured by two officers from the Marawia Police Station who attempted to force him to sell his property. When he reported the matter to the Assistant Superintendent of Police of that station the ASP refused to take action against the officers who had been positively identified and urged the victim to settle the matter.
Read More >> (2012-03-01)
A woman was assaulted in public by the Chairman of the Udubaddawa Pradesheeya Saba
Chandrani is the Samurdhi Development Officer for the Bibilideniya attached to the Udubaddawa Divisional Secretariat under the Ministry of Economic Development. Chandrani has received awards as the best performing Samurdhi Development Officer of the Udubaddawa Divisional Secretariat for two consecutive years.
Read More >> (2012-02-29)
Fishermen leader in hiding after threats
Sri Lankan leader of World Forum of Fisher People (WFFP) has urged authorities to guarantee his safety following death threats after fishermen's protest against recent fuel price increase.
Read More >> (2012-02-29)
Discussion on 25 March on Clayton Campus in Australia
People for Human Rights and Equality (PHRE) cordially invite you to its annual public forum on the state of Human Rights in Sri Lanka and South Asia. This year’s forum is on the theme ‘Democracy and Rule of Law in Sri Lanka
Read More >> (2012-02-27)
The full statement by Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe to the UNHR
I am honoured and privileged to be able to once again share with this august body, Sri Lanka’s experience in promoting and protecting the human rights of its people, in accordance with universally accepted standards.
Read More >> (2012-02-27)
The system works here in Hong Kong, Sir; it is the system operators that have failed in Sri Lanka -- a reply to a presidential advisor
One of the advisors to the Sri Lankan president went to Vavuniya last Saturday (February 25) to talk to the people displaced by 'the war' and was interviewed by a BBC correspondent. The presidential advisor told the correspondent that the displaced people in Vavuniya had not received as much benefit as the people in the same situation of Jaffna as those in Jaffna are educated and are able to make demands, while those in Vavuniya are not able to do the same. He was questioned about the complaints of the civil servants who also aired their grievances at the meeting stating that they do not have the basic facilities and means to do their jobs. To this the presidential advisor replied that the administration that the British left does not work anywhere and that is the problem
Read More >> (2012-02-27)
Wijeyadasa Rajapakse elected Bar Assn. president
Wijeyadasa Rajapakse has been elected president of the Bar Association of Sri Lanka at its annual election of office-bearers. At today’s (Feb. 22) election, he received 1,297 votes, while his challenger Tirantha Waraliyadde obtained only 676 votes.
Read More >> (2012-02-22)
Is shooting at peaceful demonstrators a government policy
Mr. Rajitha Seneratne, the Cabinet Minister for Fisheries and Aquatic Resources Development, when answering a question to a BBC Sinhala Service correspondent regarding the shooting of a fisherman at a peaceful demonstration in Chilaw stated that the shooting of demonstrators is a usual practice of the Sri Lankan police. Sri Lankan policemen have shot demonstrators in the past beginning from the 1953 Hartal protest and ever since. The minister was thus, attempting to excuse the government from its responsibility for the shooting and also point out that no action will follow relating to the killing of Anthony Fernando, the young fisherman who was shot dead while demonstrating the increase in the price of diesel and kerosene which affects the fishermen.
Read More >> (2012-02-22)
Judicial Intervention To Control Lawful Rallies
When court orders are frequently obtained by the police to restrain lawful protests and meetings, the public begin to wonder whether there is any legal basis for such actions, particularly when the Constitution guarantees freedom of association and freedom of speech. From colonial days until recently Sri Lanka has not seen the police making such unusual applications to courts to prevent mass protests, processions, strikes or peaceful meetings through judicial orders. This article is intended to examine some of the key legal provisions in this regards.
Read More >> (2012-02-13)
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