Appeal court orders CID to find 3 officers acquitted over Raviraj killing

Sri Lanka's court of appeal on Tuesday ordered the Criminal Investigations Department to find three navy officers who were aquitted in December of the killing of the TNA MP Nadarajah Raviraj. The CID was ordered to provide information on the officers' location at present, Colombo Page reported.

Chandrika says no war crimes prosecutions for Sri Lankan soldiers

Former President and current head of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR), Chandrika Kumaratunga , said that Sri Lankan soldiers who fought in the civil war will not be dragged to court because of the demands of the Tamil diaspora. "We have no intention to drag the soldiers before courts and send them to gallows," she said at a gathering in Jaffna. Kumaratunga stated that the Tamil diaspora has formed NGOs and are making such demands, while local Tamils just want to know what happened to their missing relatives. "They [local Tamils] do not demand action against soldiers...

Gotabhaya denies war crimes, criticises calls for accountability

Ex-defense minister and brother of the former President, Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, denied allegations of war crimes against him and hinted a possible entry into Sri Lanka politics. The Criminal Investigations Department told Sri Lankan courts last week that the former defense minister ran ‘top secret death squads,’ which was responsible for the assassination of political opponents and journalists. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa denied such claims stating that, “a lot of things happened without my knowledge,” and that he was working on a “policy and strategy level and not on things at the tactical level”. In...

Mullikulam villagers protest for sixth day amidst heavy surveillance

Residents of a Mannar village have been protesting for six days demanding the return of their navy-occupied land. The villagers of Mullikulam, Mannar have been displaced for 11 years, with their lands currently being used as a Sri Lankan Navy training camp. The protestors have been experiencing heavy surveillance and intimidation by Navy and intelligence personnel and police. '11 years refugee life is enough' 'We want our native land' 'Our struggle will continue until we get our land back'

Kilinochchi march against military occupation of public lands

Kilinochchi locals marched calling for the withdrawal of the Sri Lankan army from public lands, in particular from the Vaddakkachchi Agricultural Farm, which is currently being used as a military camp.

Sri Lanka's president found to be paying for promotion on social media

Sri Lanka’s president Maithripala Sirisena has been using public funds to boost his image via social media, reports Colombo Telegraph. A right to information request has been field by members of civil society to ascertain the total amount of expenditure. The issue was raised after Sirisena’s Facebook page was found to be using Facebook’s paid promotion service.

UN Human Rights Chief orders probe into intimidation of Tamil activists at UNHRC

UN Human Rights Commissioner, Zeid Raad Al Hussein, expressed his concern regarding the reports of intimidation against Tamil activists in Geneva. “Assistant Secretary-General Andrew Gilmour, the system-wide coordinator for action on reprisals, will be looking into this, and I trust, Mr President, you will also give these cases close attention,” he said. International rights activists have given information to UN authorities regarding the harassment of Tamils who have been involved in the process in Geneva.

TNA welcomes UNHRC resolution, calls on international community to ensure implementation of 30/1

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) welcomed the adoption of UN Human Rights Council resolution 34/L 1, which grants Sri Lanka two more years to implement the unmet actions outlined in resolution 30/1 from October 2015. “We urge the Government of Sri Lanka to honor its commitment with regard to these resolutions and implement the same in letter and spirit. In keeping with its commitments, we also urge the government to sincerely address the issues of land release, the detention of Tamil political prisoners, grievances of the families of missing persons, and the enactment of constitutional...

Sri Lanka's justice minister says war crimes inquiry will harm reconciliation

Sri Lanka's justice minister, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe criticised the international community for making what he described as 'unrealistic demands' of Sri Lanka, the Daily Mirror reported. Speaking at a debate in parliament on Thursday, Mr Rajapakshe said investigating war crimes whilst promoting reconciliation was "not realistic at all." "Reconciliation and probing crimes which took place during the war is like railway tracks which never get together. Probing war time crimes will actually create tension among ethnic groups," he added.

Indian government feels anguish over Sri Lanka's war crimes says minister

The Indian government feels anguish and pain over the war crimes committed by Sri Lanka's military against Tamil civilians, the External Affairs Minister, Sushma Swaraj was quoted by The Hindu as saying on Friday. “The anguish with which the members have raised the issue [of crimes committed during the war of 2009], the government associates itself with the same pain,” Ms Swaraj was quoted by the paper as saying. “Our aim is to protect the interests of Tamils in Sri Lanka. You can achieve this through two means: by either doing it forcefully or through persuasion with the friendly country."...