17 January, 2021

Blog

AI Sri Lanka Briefing Exposes How Activists Brave Retaliation Before UN Human Rights Session

The Sri Lankan government’s targeting of critics persists at alarming levels, with more surveillance and harassment reported ahead of next month’s UN Human Rights Council (HRC) session, Amnesty International said in a new briefing today.

Polly Truscott - Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia- Pacific Director

Polly Truscott – Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia- Pacific Director

Suppressing calls for justice, examines the Sri Lankan authorities’ intolerance of dissent and its attacks on critics over the past six months, either directly or through proxies that range from security forces to supporters of Buddhist-nationalist groups and even immigration officials.

“The pattern of harassment, surveillance and attacks against those opposing the Sri Lankan authorities is deeply disturbing and shows no sign of letting up,” said Polly Truscott, Amnesty International’s Deputy Asia- Pacific Director.

“Repression usually intensifies whenever Sri Lanka’s human rights situation is in focus internationally, something we are already seeing ahead of the UN Human Rights Council next month.”

Since the end to the protracted armed conflict with the Tamil Tigers (LTTE) in 2009, the government under Mahinda Rajapaksa has led a crackdown on those it perceives to be opposing them.

Opposition politicians, human rights activists, journalists, lawyers, trade unionists and many others have been harassed, threatened, violently attacked or even killed by the government, its supporters or security forces.

This trend has grown even more stark during high-profile international events putting the spotlight on Sri Lanka’s human rights situation.

The run-up to the HRC in March, when a vote is expected on a resolution calling for an international investigation into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka, has been no exception.

As the briefing shows, Amnesty International has continued to receive credible reports of activists facing surveillance and harassment

“The climate of fear is very real in Sri Lanka. Many people are too afraid to speak out. But Sri Lanka also has some very brave activists, who continue to be vocal despite facing retaliation,” said Polly Truscott.

“Some even dare to attend international meetings that could actually lead to an improved human rights situation. The UN should make every effort to ensure that they are protected.”

The visit by UN human rights chief Navi Pillay to Sri Lanka in August 2013, and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Colombo (CHOGM) three months later both saw human rights defenders being harassed and threatened.

Past UN HRC sessions in 2012 and 2013 where Sri Lanka’s human rights record was discussed saw the same disturbing pattern.

The government has reserved particular ire for those calling for an international investigation into alleged war crimes during the armed conflict, when the UN estimates that more than 40,000 people were killed during the bloody final months alone.

Activists demanding an end to enforced disappearances by security forces have received threatening phone calls and visits, and on several occasions police stood idly by as mobs attacked peaceful protests for accountability.

“Sri Lanka is doing whatever it can to avoid accountability for the alleged horrific violations by its security forces during the armed conflict,” said Polly Truscott.

“We urge UN member states to use the HRC to agree a strong resolution establishing an independent international investigation into alleged war crimes. And it is equally crucial that the world does not lose sight of the still very troubling assault on dissent in Sri Lanka today.”

The briefing documents how healing and justice are being denied as Sri Lanka’s political leadership wages an intense assault against critics and exploits religious tensions leading to attacks minorities. They have launched threats and smear campaigns against human rights defenders, minority opposition politicians, and international visitors who advocate human rights accountability in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka is also increasing its use of immigration to silence dissent. Authorities have deported several foreigners participating in human rights-related meetings, and used immigrations officials to put pressure on others, including foreign media and visiting activists and politicians.

To read the briefing click here

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 8
    3

    clowns

    • 17
      0

      Polly, first you must investigate your man in Toronto. It’s been a while since he let the cat out of the bag. His shameful behaviour is so appallingly obvious.

  • 9
    10

    Polly, we (intellectuals) like to know your so called credible reports, since you are so concern about people of Sri Lanka it’s your responsibility publish those credible reports then international community can start an investigation.

    Also, as a sovereign country Sri Lanka has every right to do whatever it takes to protect the nation’s sovereignty, integrity like every other country in this world. Can you name a country that allow terrorist to operate under the guise of a political party like TNA in SL !!!!! you don’t get this kind of freedom even in UK,US, EU, Canada, so what the hell you are bitching about. Anyway, publish that credible reports as soon as possible.

    • 11
      5

      The credible reports are already with the UN and that is what the Darusman report and C4 videos have recorded and said. Now the issue needs to be thorougly investigated using credible independent mechanism. Why is GOSL cowards to such an investigation if nothing had happened? For you, not only TNA, every tamil is a Tiger. This is also the policy that was used during the war and thus the reason for the butchery that happened in the north leading to many innocent tamils losing their lives indiscriminately. Sovereignity does not include a visa for criminal regimes to mass murder innocent civilians and commit genocide in the pretext of combatting terrorism and further fail to investigate and punish the perpetrators of the same. Surely you must be sinhalese and worried about the shame this race is going to face if the truth is established.

      • 3
        5

        If you think C4 nonsense is credible god bless you. you are correct every tamil is a terrorist period. Don’t forget that mass murder and butchery of civilians introduce to this world by your beloved blood thirsty brothers, so SL army just gave their own medicine. Don’t be a baby suck it up.

        • 4
          1

          Modaya, a report can be credible, but it still needs to be investigated and proven true, thus the requirement for an independent transparent investigation for which the sinhalese and only the sinhalese are cowardly and not agreeing obviously due to the utter shame. Racism and butchery started from independence. The historical main racist riots in 1956, 1958, 1977, 1983 (LTTE was not born even then) where thousands of tamils were looted, maimed and killed by ordinary sinhalese neighbours was considered patriotism and heroism to the majority. Can you find one sinhalese who has been arrested and punished for these race riots? Even the national hospitals manned by majority sinhalese refused to treat injured tamils, the level of hatred was so barberous. Do you agree the LTTE is a direct product of this criminality? Do you agree the tamils who fled this mayhem who now are known as the tamil diaspora and creating havoc to this nation are a result of the criminality of the sinhalese? The impunity and arrogance of the sinhalese has gone far too much and long and unfortunately this time, they are cornered and going to learn a very bitter lesson, thanks to Mahinda who has brawn but not brains. God will bless only if one has been righteous.

        • 1
          0

          What pure, unadulterated racism! You should be ashamed of yourself, Sadith.

    • 9
      5

      Sadith,

      Your intellect is not good enough to understand the difference between terrorism and asking for justice and acceptability! It is not about either you are with us or against us anymore. Your intellectual mind cannot cheery pick on the concept of the united principles. When MR went to Geneva protesting about human rights issues under the UNP government, was he promoting terrorism? Ohh I get it; the victims were the Sinhala!

      • 3
        5

        What you cannot understand is that it is the terrorists who are asking for justice, isn’t it hilarious
        MR is not a terrorist to begin with but now it is the terrorists who are going to Geneva.

        • 4
          3

          Your statement that even elected tamil representatives are terrorists clearly shows your level of education, logic and knowledge not only in this issue but in your everyday life. The what do you call those active leading participants of the LTTE such as KP, Karuna, Pillayan, who are now VIP’s inside the governement? MR is not a terrorist to the sinhalese because the sinhalese are ingrained in racism and MR sings their baila. However the other side of the coin says, MR is a state terrorist, simply using the powers of the state to do the same things that Pirabakaran did. So their is no difference between Pirbakaran and MR. Pirabakaran deserved his fate and MR also should face justice.

        • 1
          1

          Sadith,

          You call yourself an intellectual! MR bragged that his solders carried UN Human rights Charter in one hand and a weapon on the other! He said there were zero civilian casualties; when confronted with overwhelming evidences, he conceded to 8,000 civilians! Then your intellect cannot comprehend the incredulity of those who seek justice and answers!

          MR was not a terrorist when he went to Geneva but those who advocate an impartial inquiry are terrorists according to you! MR, under pressure, appointed LLRC; he does not have common sense or human decency to implement those recommendations; isn’t hilarious that foreign countries and UN putting pressure on SL to implement the LLRC Recommendations?

      • 0
        0

        so…LTTE was asking for justice for almost 3 decades? by massacureing the worshippers in a Masjid, Killing bhikkus n policemen? also setting up bombs all over the country killing innocent civilians?

        LTTE was never fighting for freedom they as hell were a terrorist outfit for whom the diaspora blindly pumped money… nevertheless not every tamil is a terrorist… those who used to call em podiyangal are for sure terrorists with ulterior motives…

    • 7
      0

      .
      Not just activists, even politicians and journalists are threatened directly or indirectly:

      Who knows even MaRa maybe under threat from GoRa.

      :-)

    • 3
      3

      You are anbother Sri Lankan MORON who keeps a blind eye to all the illegal activities done by rajavassa and its clowns. MF.

      • 2
        1

        He is just another Sinhala Chauvinist who likes the fact the Rajapaksa regime is oppressing Tamils. Sinhala Supremacists like him will label any Tamil party that stands up for the rights of Tamils as terrorist because they will accept nothing less than Sinhala island wide hegemony and for minorities to know their place.

    • 1
      1

      TNA is not LTTE, as what remains of LTTE is working for GOTA. Your comment shows you as a Sinhala Nationalist will label any Tamil party that is not behold to Sinhala Nationalism as terrorist.

      UK allows Sinn Fein to participate in Northern Ireland government.
      South Africa allowed ANC to participate and ANC won the elections.

      • 1
        0

        TNA is not LTTE!!! This is what happen when you live long period in Mars, also any human with a right mind will not try to compare TNA with Sinn Fein or ANC other than someone came from Mars.

        • 0
          0

          Sinn Fein was the political wing of the IRA. ANC had its political wing and armed wing.
          TNA was never the political wing of LTTE, LTTE had its own political wing. Yet you claim TNA is LTTE.

          GOSL has a political and military wings, the former is the Rajapaksa government and the later is the armed forces headed by GOTA. The GOSL armed forced are guilt of genocide against Tamils but you will ignore their atrocities and not call them terrorists.

    • 1
      0

      Are you sure that you belong to the category of “Intellectuals”?

      If yes, why you guys stay mum leaving a stupid man to ruin the nation today ?

      Just check it by yourself – how has he managed to keep diplomatic relations intact ? Relationships that late Kadirgamar held as gold to this times ? Who in the EUROPE would support the country today ? What happened to India – THE BIG BROTHER who had always been a close alley to sri lankans in the past ?

      What is with canada ?
      What is with Australia ?

      What is with the US ? .. Is it perhaps because of tea masters turn diplomats – silly by all nature are appointed to represent srilankens in Washington ?

      Or why is that all the external affairs to fall to this abysmal levels…
      is that because of soldier turn diplomats are appointed to represent us outside ?

  • 3
    1

    Dear Ms. Polly Troscott,

    “The Sri Lankan government’s targeting of critics persists at alarming levels, with more surveillance and harassment reported ahead of next month’s UN Human Rights Council (HRC) session, Amnesty International said in a new briefing today.”

    Yes. That is because they are a pain in the butt for the SL Govt.

    So What are you going to do about it?

    Are you going to send White Vans, Drones and Tomahawks? Or Just Talk.

    Talk, Talk, Talk, Talk, Talk, and Talk.

    There was a Western Movie, ( A fistful of Dollars?) One on the Bandits. kept talking without shooting. Then the other banding shop the talking bandit dead. Then is said,

    If you want to talk, talk,

    If you want to Shoot, Shoot.

    How long have you been talking?

    • 3
      5

      Amarasiri

      it’s the GOSL politicians, Ambassodrs and other spokesman who are shttoingfrom the hip.

      UN, AI, IC are taking their time, giving Sri Lanka ample time and opportunity before they pounce.

      As I said your name does not reflect your comments

      • 3
        1

        UN IC AI all hypocrites with their own $$ agenda– all should be dismantled. Sri lankans should vote in a new government that is the only way forward

        • 1
          1

          Vote in a new Government? In Sinhalese politics, it would be like the same old wine in new bottles. The same old faces, only the colour and the name of the party get changed. None of them have any principles, honesty or integrity.

      • 2
        0

        Rajesh,

        “As I said your name does not reflect your comments”

        Name is just an identity, like an-identity card number. There may or may not be a correlation. Alphanumeric characters and ASCII codes. Is the stock market correlated to the Lemming or Some Fly population?

        Focus on the issues raised and ideas.

        Does the Sun go around the Earth? Where is the data?

        Was the Universe created?

        Do atoms and molecules exist? Where is the data?

        Was man created or evolved? Was Darwin correct? Where is the data?

        Was Native Veddah and his ancestors the original humans in Lanka, and all others are Paradeshis or Paras? Where is the data?

        Etc., etc., ……

  • 9
    4

    “ANIMOSITY International’s targeting of Sri Lankan government persists at alarming levels, with more misrepresentations and fabrications reported ahead of next month’s UN Human Rights Council (HRC) session,” Concerned Citizens of Sri Lanka said in a news briefing today.

    “The pattern of vilification, slander and attacks against those working for post-war reconciliation towards a peaceful and united Sri Lanka is deeply disturbing and shows no sign of letting up,” said Velupillai Prabakaran, Concerned Citizens of Sri Lanka’s Deputy Asia- Pacific Director.

    “Hate propaganda against Sri Lanka usually intensifies whenever its human rights situation is in focus internationally, something we are already seeing ahead of the UN Human Rights Council next month.”

    • 0
      2

      Sri Lanka deserves all the criticism and then some, because currently and for decades it has been run by Sinhala supremacists hellbent on cleansing the island of Tamils or anyone not Sinhala Buddhist.

  • 5
    4

    There should be a credible international investigation for AI’s funding and where they ended up, including Polly Truscott. Amnesty International is doing its public relations gimmicks as usual.
    AI has been accused of ideological bias by governments and citizens of Western or Western-supported countries, including Israel and the United States. Prof. Francis Boyle, attributes the alleged links between Amnesty International and US and UK foreign policy interests to the relatively large financial contribution of Amnesty International USA to AI’s international budget, which he estimated at 20%.In February 2011, newspaper stories in the UK revealed that Irene Khan had received a payment of UK £533,103 from Amnesty International following her resignation from the organisation on 31 December 2009, a fact discovered in Amnesty’s records for the 2009–2010 financial year. The sum paid to her was in excess of four times her annual salary of £132,490. The deputy secretary general, Kate Gilmore – who also resigned in December 2009 – received an ex-gratia payment of £320,000.Peter Pack, the chairman of Amnesty’s international executive committee, said on 19 February 2011,The payments to outgoing secretary general Irene Khan shown in the accounts of AI (Amnesty International) Ltd for the year ending 31 March 2010 include payments made as part of a confidential agreement between AI Ltd and Irene Khan.

    AI had a role propagating disinformation in a press release before the 1991 Gulf War. It later transpired that this claim was a propaganda hoax. Prof. Francis Boyle, an AI USA director at the time, give detailed insider account handled.
    Sri Lankan government had accused AI of indirectly supporting the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. The Foreign Ministry of Sri Lanka said they got an assurance from the ICC that all steps would be taken to prevent AI from carrying out any campaign within the grounds targeting Sri Lanka or its players in 2007 world cup cricket.

  • 4
    3

    Let us hope that AI has no presence whatsoever in Sri Lanka. It is allegedly upto it’s neck in Tamil terrorist funds. It is truly an NGO seeking absolution for Tamil Terrorist activities by pointing fingers elsewher.

    • 0
      3

      For you lot any and all Western institutions critical of GOSL are controlled by Tamils.

      Either you are delusional or you are trying to convince others by repeatedly lying that Tamils control Western governments and institutions BUT all you succeed in doing is showing how ridiculous you are because your accusations of Tamil overseas power are laughable.

      • 0
        2

        Spot on, Palmsquirrell. It is indeed laughable when people chant that tattered old mantra about the power of overseas Tamil organisations. True, some of the Tamil groups are better organised, but some not much better than a rabble. Their influence is variable, and foreign organisations are rather better informed about the history of the conflict than we give them credit for.

  • 6
    2

    Its good timing the mass grave was found. It now appears the area was occupied by IKPF first and then the LTTE.

    It seems now even IKPF and LTTE are also complicit in the Tamil genocide.

    • 6
      4

      Didn’t the LTTE massacre the other Tamil terrorist groups and their supporters one by one.

  • 3
    2

    ““The pattern of harassment, surveillance and attacks against those opposing the Sri Lankan authorities is deeply disturbing and shows no sign of letting up,” said Polly Truscott”

    Dear Polly- without parroting what local NGOs report to you please visit the following facebook site to appreciate the freedom of criticism of the President even at very personal level that the opposition enjoys.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=602494493165759&set=vb.281202371961641&type=2&theater

  • 4
    1

    “How Activists Brave Retaliation Before UN Human Rights Session”

    We shouldn’t be too alarmed by these arrangements, it means business is as usual.

    If I were Polly Truscott I wouldn’t worry too much.

  • 3
    3

    Amnesty Internationa is a terrorist organization – Said Ranjan Wijeratne, Sri Lankan former defence minister.

    Amnesty asked its sister group LTTE to do the human right job on him. Ranjan was gone.

  • 5
    3

    Amnesty International is a biased group and is well known for that. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_Amnesty_International

    They received monetary contributions from the LTTE in Canada.
    http://thecarthaginiansolution.wordpress.com/2011/12/23/mr-poop-goes-for-a-walk/

  • 4
    3

    While I am not taking the side of the GoSL it amazes me that AI can take time out from counting their executive salaries, freebies and benefits to write anything at all.

  • 3
    3

    Just to back up my earlier response –

    In February 2011, newspaper stories in the UK revealed that Irene Khan had received a payment of UK £533,103 from Amnesty International following her resignation from the organisation on 31 December 2009, a fact discovered in Amnesty’s records for the 2009–2010 financial year. The sum paid to her was in excess of four times her annual salary of £132,490. The deputy secretary general, Kate Gilmore – who also resigned in December 2009 – received an ex-gratia payment of £320,000. Peter Pack, the chairman of Amnesty’s international executive committee, said on 19 February 2011, “The payments to outgoing secretary general Irene Khan shown in the accounts of AI (Amnesty International) Ltd for the year ending 31 March 2010 include payments made as part of a confidential agreement between AI Ltd and Irene Khan.” and that “It is a term of this agreement that no further comment on it will be made by either party.” On 21 February Pack issued a further statement, in which he said that the payment was a “unique situation” that was “in the best interest of Amnesty’s work” and that there would be no repetition of it. He stated that “the new secretary general, with the full support of the IEC, has initiated a process to review our employment policies and procedures to ensure that such a situation does not happen again.” Pack also stated that Amnesty was “fully committed to applying all the resources that we receive from our millions of supporters to the fight for human rights”. In a letter to the “movement” dated 25 February, Pack offered additional details, which in turn had been made public by Amnesty International Netherlands. According to this statement Irene Khan, being reluctant to retire at the end of her second term, the International Executive Committee offered her additional termination benefits, payment of back salary, bonuses and other inducements to leave. UK employment law offering additional protections to fixed-term employees had given Khan leverage to ask for termination benefits. The alternatives, according to Pack, would have been her continuation in office, or an official dismissal which might have led to litigation.

    • 2
      1

      Jack it up with this moron.

      And they are legion. London hosts more than 4,000 individuals with over £20 million per head, making it the city with the highest number of multimillionaires in the world. Flocking to this rich man’s playground, these titans require minions to guide them through the demands of the day: be it sourcing the correct chia seeds for breakfast or answering the gold-plated Vertu.

      In December, figures from the Inter-national Guild of Professional Butlers confirmed that there are 10,000 such staff working in Britain, some charging up to £300,000 a year. The average income of these ‘professional heads of household’ ranges between £60,000 and £100,000, but the ‘Downton effect’ has meant that some can earn more. Agencies are flourishing with British butlers prized across the globe, be it in New York, China or Kazakhstan. We Brits may like to think of ourselves as Downton-esque earl and countess types, but it is as humble Carsons that we shine.

      Where once we were satirised as a nation of shopkeepers, now we are fêted as an army of exquisitely vowelled butlers. In a reversal of the conventional stereotype, it is the incoming foreigners who preside, we who serve them. The cream of this attentive crop is rumoured to receive over £1 million a year, plus food, board, lodging, transport and private healthcare.

  • 3
    0

    WONDER whom or where she was sleeping with when Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan were and IS still being bombed by the so called WEST…
    ALL these NGO’s have an agenda, they work hand in glove with the OPPRESSORS THAN VOICE FOR THE OPPRESSED in most COUNTRIES…. IT’S ALL A game…they play the tune and the drama unfolds…..AS INNOCENT VICTIMS ARE CALLED COLLATERAL DAMAGE…..

  • 0
    0

    CT YOU ARE FULLY BLOCKED IT IS ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO GET THROUGH USING MOST OF THE PROXY..

    Is there anyone else facing the same isuues? CT please verify ..

  • 0
    0

    Javi is like a fruit poisonous fruit sprining from a fertile ground, he uses bamabstic langauge only to go overbaord to express how really he is sick with prejudise.

    Like the saying goes -do not bottle up your emotions-speak out of your heart -but be candid and Judicious when expressing them .. where will you find such quality in people like Javi.. he is a miserable racist.

    read through and through his comments youw ill also find him a very mentally sick person and a sedaist who enjoys the burning of new born babies , raping of little girls ,selling them to brotherls burning unamred men etc only becuase he find a segemnt of this religous group is fanatic that also mostly propgrammed pureloy on hear say . waht ajerk.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 200 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically disabled after 7 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.