UN Special Rapporteur to visit Sri Lanka in October

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Promotion of Truth, Justice, Reparation and Guarantees of Non‐Recurrence Pablo de Greiff announced that he will be visiting Sri Lanka next month. Mr de Greiff told the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva that the Sri Lankan government had invited him to visit the island from 10 to 23 October 2017. The Special Rapporteur last visited the island in 2016, where he reiterated the importance of victim participation in an accountability mechanism for mass atrocities.

Tamil women from Kilinochchi trafficked to Nepal

Nepalese police have rescued two Tamil women who were trafficked out of Kilinochchi into Kathmandu last month, reports the Kathmandu Post. Nepal’s Central Investigation Bureau (CIB) found the two women, aged 24 and 33, at a hotel in Thamel area of the capital on August 25. They had arrived in Nepal in May. The women were subsequently sent back to Sri Lanka this week. They had reportedly paid a broker to take them to Canada and were first taken to Indonesia according to a police spokesperson. See more from the Kathmandu Post here .

Northern Province Chief Minister outlines Tamil grievances to leading Buddhist clergy in Kandy

Sri Lanka’s Northern Province Chief Minister CV Wigneswaran met with the a leading Buddhist clergy in Kandy to outline Tamil grievences last week. Meeting with the leader of the Malwatte Chapter in Kandy, the Chief Minister outlined several grievances of the Tamil community including the intense militarisation of the North-East and the need for the majority community to acknowledge the distinct identity of the Tamils. The Chief Minister told the leading prelate of the Malwatte Chapter that over 150,000 troops were station in the North-East and continued to hold approximately 85,000 acres of...

Indian Consulate pays tribute to revolutionary Tamil poet Bharathiyar in Jaffna

Tributes were paid to the revolutionary Tamil poet Subaramani Bharathi in Jaffna today on the 95th anniversary of his death.

Sri Lankan minister says security forces did not commit any war crimes

Sri Lanka's minister of housing and construction and UNP MP, Sajith Premadasa on Sunday rejected reports that the country's security forces committed war crimes or mass atrocities, and assured that the "government would not permit anyone to lay their hands on our war heroes". "There are various versions of the Geneva Human Rights conference of this year. Some claim our war heroes committed war crimes. None of them committed any such crimes," Mr Premadasa was quoted by The Island as saying at an opening event for a new housing scheme in Polonnaruwa. "It was the LTTE that committed war crimes...

Eastern Provincial Council votes in favour of 20A

The Eastern Provincial council on Monday voted in favour of the 20th Amendment to Sri Lanka's constitution, which seeks to hold all provincial council elections on one day. The Amendment was voted on with 25 votes in favour, and 8 votes against, Adaderana reported. The Northern Provincial Council has sought changes to the draft bill prior to voting on it.

Sirisena says determined to protect 'war heroes' from foreign forces

Sri Lanka's president Maithripala Sirisena reiterated on Sunday his government's commitment to 'protecting war heroes from foreign forces', the Colombo Page reported. Speaking at an event on a new water purification system at Ritigahawewa Viharaya in Horowpathana, Mr Sirisena said "the government defends the security of all war heroes from the Army Commander to the last soldier and the government would not allow any foreign forces to lay hands on war heroes who laid down their lives to defend the country." Mr Sirisena has consistently pledged to prevent any international investigation into...

UN human rights chief calls for exercise of universal jurisdiction on Sri Lanka

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein noted frustration over the “slow pace of reforms” in Sri Lanka and said the absence of action on accountability meant exercising universal jurisdiction was “even more necessary”. Speaking at the opening of the UN Human Rights Council session in Geneva, the human rights chief called on Sri Lanka to live up to commitments it had made to the international community. “I encourage the Government to act on its commitment in Resolution 30/1 to establish transitional justice mechanisms, and to establish a clear timeline and...

Tamil Canadians host 7th annual Kilithattu tournament

Photographs: TYO Canada The Tamil Youth Organization – Canada hosted the 7 th annual Kilithattu tournament Canada in partnership with the Canadian Tamil Sports Association in Toronto last month, bringing together crowds from across generations to take part in the national game of Tamil Eelam.

Sathurukondan massacre: 186 Tamils slaughtered by Sri Lankan Army remembered in Batticaloa

On September 9th 1990, Tamil men, women and children from Sathurukondan and surrounding villages were taken to an army camp and slaughtered by Sri Lankan soldiers, with the help of Muslim Home Guards. Victims of the Sathurukondan massacre were remembered in Batticaloa on Saturday in an event organised by the World Tamil Students Union and local organisations.