8 December, 2019

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‘Editor Threatened With Death Is Sacked As ARTICLE 19’s Warning To UN Comes True’ Says ARTICLE 19

By Colombo Telegraph

“The new owner of the Sunday Leader has sacked editor Frederica Jansz just two months after she received death threats from Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and five months after ARTICLE 19 warned the UN human rights body that the president’s affiliates were buying up the private media in order to take editorial control over all critical voices in the country.” says ARTICLE 19.

“The sacking of Frederica Jansz – one of the few remaining independent journalists critical of the government still in the country – is terrible news for the Sri Lankan media. We warned the UN in April that affiliates of the president appeared to be buying up the private media in order to control their editorial lines, resulting in a severely reduced debate in a country that has only just emerged from conflict,” said Dr Agnes Callamard, ARTICLE 19 Executive Director.

“Worse still is that Frederica Jansz received death threats from the president’s brother, Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, just two months ago. Rather than investigating and taking a stance against threats of violence, they’ve instead focused their energy on further undermining her, and freedom of expression in general,” she added.

In the shadow report for the Universal Periodic Review of Sri Lanka – due in October 2012, ARTICLE 19 highlighted that media diversity and press freedom are under threat in Sri Lanka where affiliates of the president appear to be buying newspapers that criticise the government, in order to censor them.

Jansz told the Colombo Telegraph, an online newspaper run by exiled Sri Lankan journalists, that she had told the Sunday Leaders’ new owner, Asanga Seneviratne, that she would resign rather than prevent her reporters from reporting about and criticising the government.

Jansz was threatened with death in July 2012. She was conducting an interview over the phone with Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa when he told her: “You pig that eats shit! You shit shit dirty fucking journalist! […] People will kill you! People hate you! They will kill you!

The Sunday Leader and its journalists have until now faced regular attack. The newspaper’s editor, Lasantha Wickramatunge, was assassinated on his way to work on 8 January 2009. Nobody has ever been prosecuted for the crime.

Related posts;

Frede Out And Saku In – Frederica Is Sacked, Not Resigned

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Latest comments

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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy
    http://colombotelegraph.com/comments-policy/

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    WHY NOT APPOINT FREDRICA TO LEAD THE COUNTRY?. I BET SHE WOULD RUN THE COUNTRY BETTER THAN THE “DEVIL DANCERS FROM RUHUNU”.

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    My dog knows honesty, justice and respect than the Govt.goons. I have more trust and confidence in it than the Gas g….a.

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    It is interesting that PATRIOTIC SRI LANKANS A MISNOMER FOR SINHALA FASCISTS ARE CELEBRATING THE DEMISE OF FJ FROM LEADER.

    ANY ONE WHO PROTESTS AGAINST JOURNILISTIC FREEDOM IS AUTOMATICALLY CALLED PRO-TIGER DIASPORA…WHAT A LOGIC

    IT PROVES WHAT THE LATE CEYLON COMMUNIST PARTY LEADER SAID THAT THE FUNDAMENTAL PROBLEM IN SRI LANKA IS CONNECTED WITH THE TAMIL NATIONAL QUESTION..

    SINCE IT IS THROUGH USING THE BOGEY OF THE TAMIL THREAT THAT COUNTLESS SINHALA LEADERS HAVE MILKED SRI LANKA FOR THEIR PRIVATE GAIN. MAHINDA IS NO EXCEPTION…

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      WELL SAID.I WISH TO ADD;-
      IN 1956, “BUDDHIST -TURNED CHRISTIAN BANDA” CAME WITH THE SINHALA ONLY CRY, AND USED THE BUDDHIST PRIESTS TO COME TO POWER.
      WELL, HE DID NOT LAST THAT LONG, AS HE WAS ASSASSINATED BY A BUDDHIST
      PRIEST PART OF THE “INFAMOUS GANG OF FOUR” WHICH INCLUDED ANOTHER
      LEADING PRIEST, POLICE OFFICER.AND A WOMAN MINISTER AND A POLICE INSPECTOR. IN THE BACKGROUND THERE WAS BUSINESSMAN, DOING VERY WELL.
      BANDA’S ASSASSIN, CONVERTED TO CHRISTIANITY BEFORE HE WAS HANGED.
      PROBABLY HE IS IN HEAVEN LAUGHING AT BANDA WHO PROBABLY IS IN THE OTHER
      PLACE.
      FIRST IT WAS “RICE POLITICS”-THEN SAVING THE “SINHALA BUDDHIST” CRY!!!
      MINORITIES, BOTH TAMILS AND MUSLIMS ARE UNDER THREAT.
      OF LATE MUSLIMS IN PARTICULAR.
      WHEN LEADERS OF THE MINORITIES ARE BEING BOUGHT OVER, THE ORDINARY MAN IS NOT GOING TO “GRIN AND BEAR” THEY ARE BOUND TO RETALIATE.
      ITS TIME RAJAPAKSES REALIZE THIS. SOONER THE BETTER

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    Am disappointed in the Wickrematunge’s

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      Silenced rights
      Don’t be disappointed because Lal W has joined the ranks of Hirunika and her mother, the army major who was whacked by Malaka (and more to come!)who are absolutely without any shame or honour. Anything for money!

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    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy
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    sir. now sunil jayasekara must resign from iruresa how he works under asanga seneviratrhna. we think sunil playing double game

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    I suggest to all editors to leave the editorial page blank for 3 days in protest of this incident. Will you do it? Please try if you want press freedom. The entire world will salute you if you could do it.

    Anandi

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