The Sri Lankan government has shut down most universities on the island, after an ongoing row over government interference saw widespread strikes by teachers.
The Minister for Higher Education S.B. Dissanayake announced the decision after consultation with university officials not involved in the trade union action and accused the FUTA (Federation of University Teachers Association) of trying to provoke a political crisis in order to get regime change.
He said the government had already met five of FUTA’s six demands, but their spokesman denied this.
Mahim Mendis told the BBC that the "politicisation and militarisation" of universities must end and said that ministers were appointing their own loyalists to top university posts.
"To suggest we want regime change is frivolous. You need to understand, Futa [the union] includes academics from all political parties,"
Following the violent scenes of Tamil 'Boycott Sri Lankan Cricket' activists being assaulted by Sri Lankan cricket fans, on Monday night outside the Oval in London, Tamil Guardian spoke to one of the organisers, Thusiyan.
University Tamil societies from across the UK have released a statement condemning the racist attacks outside the Oval on Monday.
21 Tamil societies joined together to denounce the attacks and commend the peaceful campaign of the activists,
The Secretary of the Ministry of External Affairs, Karunathilake Amunugama said that through the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, the 'correct image of Sri Lanka could be depicted to the international'.