20 September, 2020

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An Open Letter To UN And Sri Lankan President

By Bijo Francis

Bijo Francis

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is writing this letter both to your goodself and to His Excellency, The President of Sri Lanka, to strongly urge an inquiry into the execution of Ms. Rizana Nafeek, a Sri Lankan citizen in Saudi Arabia. The Government of Saudi Arabia executed Rizana at 11:48 am on January 9.

The matters that we request your office to urge for an investigation are the following:

a.    What is the evidence upon which the court in Saudi Arabia sentenced Rizana for capital punishment?

b.    It is reported that the only evidence relied upon by the court is a confession statement, allegedly made by Rizana. If that is the case, we urge Your Excellency to request the Government of Saudi Arabia to inquire the circumstances under which Rizana made this statement.

c.    Under what circumstances was Rizana’s age (she being a minor) ignored? The Government of Saudi Arabia now claims that Rizana was 21 years of age based on the passport, despite the contrary evidence placed before the court. Your Excellency has also confirmed that Rizana is a minor vide Your Excellency’s letter to His Royal Highness, King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia.

The AHRC is certain that you are aware that Rizana’s execution has led to an international outrage against the trial and the sentence. For a period of five years, the world protested against the unjustness of the death sentence. It is widely held, and the facts reported so far strongly suggests that the case charged against Rizana does not meet the requirements of a charge against murder. It is also globally reported that when Rizana was handed over to the Saudi police, she had been subjected to duress and there was no translator to assist her.

The AHRC has confirmed that Rizana spoke only Tamil and the inquiry conducted by the Saudi police was in Arabic. The AHRC also has information that the letter allegedly signed by Rizana is written in Arabic, a language that Rizana does not speak, read or write. In these circumstances, Rizana could not have made the confession. There is a report that the translator provided to Rizana, at some stage of her trial or investigation, is a person from Karnataka, India, who speaks only Kannada and not Tamil.  Furthermore, at trial Rizana did not receive any legal assistance.

All these factors were brought to the notice of the Saudi court that heard the appeal against conviction, and to the Government of Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, the Government of Saudi Arabia denies none of the above.

The global outrage in this case is justified since Rizana’s execution is nothing less than murder. Under these circumstances, it would not suffice only to condemn Rizana’s execution. What is required is a thorough investigation in this case.

The AHRC therefore requests you to initiate a process with the cooperation of the Government of Saudi Arabia, so that an international expert is appointed to inquire into the case. The expert should visit Saudi Arabia and be allowed to examine all records concerning the case, from the time the complaint against Rizana was made to her execution in Saudi Arabia.

The AHRC calls upon you to demand this inquiry, since in this case as the rights of young girl, a subject of Sri Lanka, were violated in Saudi Arabia. The mere payment of money by a Saudi citizen to Rizana’s family is not a substitute for a proper inquiry.

In this context, the AHRC also wishes to state that the statement by the official Saudi press as reported by the CNN that: “the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia categorically rejects any interference in its affairs or in the provisions of its judiciary under any justification“, is unacceptable and amounts to Saudi Arabia’s rejection of its obligation under international law to respect the universal human rights norms and standards. All responsible governments are under obligation to be accountable to the verdicts of the death sentence pronounced by courts under their jurisdiction.

The issues arising out of Rizana’s case are known worldwide. Not to seek clarity on the case thus would amount to complicity. Furthermore, such an inquiry could provide an opportunity for your office, as well as the international community, to ensure that similar violations would not occur in the future.

Additionally this is a duty that the United Nations owes to Razina and her family, to clear her name. Rizana’s honor must be restored.

Sincerely

Bijo Francis
Interim Executive Director
Asian Human Rights Commission

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Latest comments

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    Rizana Nafeek was let down by her government, and it seems although they depend on the remittance that comes in to the country, they did not have the competency or the decency, to fight for her life. It seems the Rajapaksa government shows more empathy for politicians who kill, assault, and cause harm, to others, in fact they make sure they have safe passage to Singapore, instead of supporting a poor young child, who was left at the mercy of a harsh nation with primitive laws, and harsh sentences. Rizana was ignored and not rescued, by her own country first, and the rest of the world.

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    I believe Rizana’s family want her body back. Even in its desecrated condition. If this is so, please use your voice to help them here. It will be very hard, of course, to get the Saudi authorities to consent to change their practices in any way, but appeals to people like the Princess whose Legal Advisor (on her behalf?) was moved to make some small restitution might be one way to go. Also, the shame now being heaped upon Saudi Arabia internationally might be directed into obtaining this small “relief” for the family — to gaze upon the face of their beloved child once again, even in death.

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    STOP ALL MAIDS AND CHILD MINDERS FROM TAKING EMPLOYMENT IN THESE COUNTRIES WITH THE SO CALLED “SHARIA LAW”. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO SLAVE TO WAHABI’S AND NOMADS. LET THEM LEARN TO LOOK AFTER THEIR OWN KIDS AND FAMILIES.

    THEY COULD HAVE VERTICAL CUT OR HORIZONTAL CUT TO THE HEAD, ARM, OR LEGS TO THEIR OWN WAHABI’S AND NOMADS. THEN WE WILL SEE A LOT OF THESE SO CALLED “SHARIA LAW” IMPOSERS EITHER HEADLESS OR LIMBLESS ROLLING IN THE DESSERT UNDER THE HOT SUN.

    THERE ARE PLENTY OF EMPLOYMENT FOR THESE GIRLS AND BOYS IN OUR ISLAND WITH LOT OPPORTUNITY TO SURVIVE IN LIFE.

    WAIT FOR THESE ASSHOLES TO BE ELIMINATED FROM THE THRONE OF SRI LANKA.

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    we thanks for Asian Human Rights Commission(AHRC)and other organizations as well as those country’s who stand behalf of Rizana.
    though it is unfair to blame government and gov.ministry’s regard to passport issue. because 2005 was a war dominated era where law and order not present. upgrade age is a common activity for migrant per poses those days. any way i am sure all international community’s and authorities will take this matter seriously and make Saudi pay for this BIGTIME

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    Bijo Francis
    Interim Executive Director
    Asian Human Rights Commission

    Dear Mr.Bijo Francis,

    Could you help me to send my following request to all the named International bodies.

    Thank you.

    My Dear International Community Members of: USA,UK,UN,EU,CW, Asian and African Federation member states.

    We Sri Lankans have lost our faith in both tha Ruling Rajapakse Government and the Opposition Parties who gives bogus promises until they come into power and once in Power use all the country’s resources and wealth for their own selfish greed and power while suppressing people’s voices.

    Ever since we got Independence All the ruuling parties as well as the opposition ran the country like their own property, ruining everything from economy,Education, health and social lives of people that they enjoyed immensly under the British Rule.

    The uneducated, Uncultured thugs from Both the Ruling and the Opposition Parties ran the Country only to fulfill their selfish ambitions and money greed left Citizens to suffer.

    Behadding under age Rizana in Saudi Arabia was due to greedy politiciens looking for foreign exchange to buy Laborginies and other Luxuries to their sons and goons started exporting poor and helpless children for slave labor in Middle East.

    Please see Rizana Nafeek’s home and town in the following web sites.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-20959228

    http://www.lankachannels.lk/sirasa-tv/sirasa-tv-news-1st-10-o-clock-sinhala-news-17th-january-2013-video_3be720b71.html

    It is worse than a cattle farm cottege.
    Seventy percent(70%) of Sri Lankan’s live similar to these houses with tin and Coconut leaf roof houses similar to VEDDA (native) community live sixty (60) years after independence.

    While Politicians treat poor citizens like this, they send their children to all the expensive Colleges in USA and Europe and buying them BMW, Mercedes Benz, and Lamborghini cars and make family foreign pleasure trips wasting valuable foreign exchange these poor people bring to Sri Lanka.

    President and Ministers all have their Foreign Private bank accounts and expensive houses in all over the world using these citizens hard earned foreign exchange, while no effort was made to rescue Rizana from beheading in Saudi Arabia.

    President Mahinda Rajapakse Impeached CJ Dr.Shirani Bandaranayake because she did not allow his brother Basil Rajapakse to steal Divineguma 85 Billion Rupees. Basil Rajapakse has US $ 4.5 Million House in california, USA and own unaccountable number of tourist hotels in both EAST COAST, NORTH AND SOUTHERN COASTS. Therefore definitely he is planning to use most of this 85 Billion fund for his personal use, and that’s why CJ Shirani Bandaranayake was chased from her post since she opposed this sordid fake project.

    As a result of helping us the citizen by not allowing President’s Brother Basil Rajapakse to steal this money, CJ madam Bandaranayake had to sacrifi8ce her Job.

    Now both she and her husband are unemployed while having a son to look after and also now feared for her and her family’s lives through President’s killer squad.

    Also President Rajapakse Stole Millions of Dollars that International Community sent for Tsunami victims….but due to his friend ex.CJ Sarath N.Silva President got away from that fraud charges.

    Therefore we Sri Lankans have lost our faith in both Governing Rajapakse Regime and the Opposition parties to help us.

    THEREFORE WE KINDLY REQUEST YOU TO IMPLEMENT FOLLOWING MEASURES ON RAJAPAKSE REGIME UNTIL IT RE-INSTATE EX. CJ DR. SHIRANI BANDARANAYAKE AS CHIEF JUSTICE ———————————————————-
    —————–

    1)International community should impose travel Ban to President and all the Govt. Ministers and MP’s who voted for CJ Impeachment. Also Isolate Sri Lanka from future conferences like CHOGM, CW, Asian and African Forums and from UN etc.

    2)Bring President Mahinda Rajapakse for War Crimes and Tsunami Fraud stealing millions of Dollars of Foreign Donations given to poor homeless people who were effected by 2004 Tsunami.

    3)Terminate USA GSP status, trade and tourism and to let President to have his own vacation in Hambantota harbour.

    4)Stop all Aid and Loans given to Sri Lanka by World Bank, IMF, Asian and EU banks.

    5) Freeze all personal foreign bank accounts, personal assets of President’s family (like Basil’s USA 4.5 million dollar house and Gotabaya’s 950,000 dollar house) and other Govt. Ministers and Government officials who are closley related and involved with President Rajapakse.

    6) use both Internal and external methods and pressure either to correct or Change Rajapakse Dictatorial Regime.

    I request this on behalf of all Sri Lankans and you could find their views if you talk to them on above requests.

    THANK YOU AND HOPE YOU WILL CONSIDER MY REQUEST.

    • 0
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      Great Jayantha,

      All Silence masses of this country are with you.

      Jaya Wewa ! :)))

    • 0
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      Dear Jayantha,
      This letter was written to seek justice for Rizana and clear her good name.Please do not get local petty politics in to this and destroy the good intentions of Bijo Francis.As a country we miserably failed our obligations for Rizana and many such migrants.The government is seriously guilty and the ministers Dilan, Hakeem very well demonstrated their ineptness.

      At least the barbaric Saudi regime must be shown that we Sri Lankans care for our citizens regardless of their ethnic origin, religion and culture.

      I still have not recovered from the shocking injustice happened to our girl Rizana.If we do not act we will witness many more incidents like this.

      Remember Sri Lanka have enough well meaning people!

      May Rizana attain supreme bliss of Nibbana.

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    why you are compare with goverment for rizana’s case srilanka goverment always doing well and good but saudi they are animals world waste animal ever they are not human or educated specially uneducated saudi police this is fact but you all get to gather with goverment and devolop the country if you try again for make coun try massy please love always love your mother country ok

  • 0
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    Saudis have primitive laws, They are barbarians.
    They should not be given membership in any civilized organisations in the world
    Their status has to be lowered in the international community as a primitive nation

  • 0
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    Rizana’s mother refuses Saudi money . See below

    qhttp://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Middle-East/2013/Jan-18/202801-executed-sri-lankan-maids-mother-refuses-saudi-money.ashx#axzz2IKknzVX

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