22 September, 2018

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No Arrest On Gota’s Torture Camp; Navy Silent

A highly placed Navy official said today that the secret torture camp the United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID) is referring to could be the one commander Sampath Munasinghe, the personal bodyguard of the former Navy commander retired Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda had kept Tamil youth who were abducted in Colombo.

Navy Commander Wasantha KarannagodaThe officer who prefers not to be named said that the location where Munasinghe had kept prisoners too had been earlier used to store firearms.

The official said that he had no-knowledge of three Navy officers being arrested in connection with the recent revelations made by the UN working group, as claimed by some media. However he said that there was confusion within the Navy regarding the recent accusations.

The Navy officer pointed out that the UN groups claims during a media briefing in Colombo and the subsequent media reporting, especially by the foreign media drew a picture in the public mind that the said camp was a new finding, unearthed by the UN team.

Contrary to this notion the officer said that such torture chambers which existed during previous regimes time were discovered much earlier and was revealed in the media itself.

He said that the UN team was given wide access within the Navy base to visit any location they wished.

“The way the team presented facts before the media indicates that either they were highly excited about what they thought was a new finding or it demonstrates their lack of foresight and experience about local ground realities” he added.

The Navy official said that these torture chambers did not exist after 2011.

Trincomalee Naval Dockyard Secret Torture SiteOn October 21 the CID informed courts that 11 persons, mainly Tamil youth abducted by unidentified groups in Colombo and suburbs in 2008 – 2009, had been detained at the Trincomalee Navy camp.

In this case, the CID has named navy lieutenant commander Sampath Munasinghe, the personal bodyguard of the former Navy commander retired Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda as the main suspect.

CID informed courts that a group accompanied by Munasinghe abducted five youths in Dehiwela area in 2009. They have also demanded a ransom of Rs. 10 million from the relatives of the abducted youths.

The police had found the National Identity Cards of four missing youth and passports from Munasinghe’s room. The CID told that the men had been detained at underground cells at the Colombo and Trincomalee Navy camps.

The CID also said that the former commander (Retd.) Admiral Karannagoda was aware of the abductions and suspects including Munasinghe would not be able to carry out such operations without the knowledge of the former Navy Commander.

Meanwhile yesterday the government said it would investigate on the UN team’s submissions.

Foreign Ministry’s Official Spokesperson Mahishini Colonne said “we are willing to investigate what the UN Working Group saw in Trincomalee. They said they had visited the secret detention camp and the government provided complete access to wherever they wanted to go. Very few countries have done this. They were given access to meet all officers at the base. Even when any request came from them at short notice we provided assistance.”

During a media briefing on Wednesday the visiting UN group members said that they had visited a secret torture chamber in the Trinco Naval base, Members of the team said that some dates prior to 2011 had been carved into the walls. The team said that they believed prisoners were kept for prolonged periods while subjecting them to torture.

Meanwhile the Tamil National Alliance claims that torture camps had existed in Sri Lanka long after 2010.

The secret camp named “Gota” located within the Trincomalee Naval Base, had separately held 700 Tamils and 35 Tamil families, the TNA had said earlier.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe had earlier said a couple off months back “after we took over the government, there are no secret camps. I cannot speak for the time before that”.

Meanwhile the International Truth and Justice Project – Sri Lanka (ITJP) today welcomed the visit by the UN Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearance (WGEID) to the secret detention site in Trincomalee Naval Base High Security Zone.

The ITJP in a statement said that the WGEID team’s remark that systematic torture had taken place in the underground cells in Trincomalee and that the detention site, which was in existence for some years, could not have operated “unnoticed” by other officials, should be investigated.

“ITJP reported in detail on the Trincomalee secret torture site in July 2015 , giving the GPS coordinates for its location (GPS: 8’33’26’13 N, 81’14’32’87 E) and the names of naval intelligence officers whom witnesses say were in charge of the site. This information as well as detailed site sketches by survivors was shared by ITJP with WGEID in a confidential written submission before their visit to Sri Lanka. We note the new Government of Sri Lanka has so far failed to investigate the allegations regarding the site in Trincomalee” the statement added.

The ITJP said that this raises serious concerns about the pervasive climate of impunity and the Government of Sri Lanka’s reluctance to investigate and reform its own security forces, despite promises to the international community to do so.

The ITJP also urged the government to broaden the scope of investigation beyond Samapth Munasinghe and groups activities in relation to the torture camp in the Naval base.

The ITJP also noted that the two marine intelligence officers allegedly in charge of the Trincomalee secret site from 2009-2012, Lt. Commodore Welegedara until 2010 and then a Lt. Commodore Ranasinghe should be questioned in addition to the overall commanders during the period 2009-2012 of the Trincomalee Naval base.

Also the group recommended to Question the Naval Commanders in office during this period to ascertain if they knew of the existence of this secret detention site. They are Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda (September 2005 to July 2009), Admiral TSG Samarasinghe (July 2009 to 1 January 2011), Admiral D. W. A. S. Dissanayake (January 2011 to September 2012)

Click here to read the full statement of the ITJP.

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Latest comments

  • 20
    1

    Wijedasa Rajapakse will look after them!

    • 22
      4

      Arrest Gota.

      Take in torture puppeteer Navy Wasantha too.

      Use disgraced killer Sampath Munasinghe as a state witness. He might sing.

      Cheers!

      • 16
        1

        Ben Hurling

        “Arrest Gota”

        If you are serious, then there are thousands of them in the queue.

        There used to be a torture centre (run by Police & army) in the middle of Vavunia town. Is it Joseph camp?

        • 6
          0

          what about the British built ammunition storing tunnel inside secret cells at GPS coordinates location (GPS: 8’32’42 North, 81’13’19.10 East)!!!!!!!.
          did the United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID) members visited to those areas or S L Navy showed them those areas.

          “”CID informed courts that a group accompanied by Munasinghe abducted five youths in Dehiwela area in 2009. They have also demanded a ransom of Rs. 10 million from the relatives of the abducted youths.

          The police had found the National Identity Cards of four missing youth and passports from Munasinghe’s room. The CID told that the men had been detained at underground cells at the Colombo and Trincomalee Navy camps.

          The CID also said that the former commander (Retd.) Admiral Karannagoda was aware of the abductions and suspects including Munasinghe would not be able to carry out such operations without the knowledge of the former Navy Commander.

          Who shared the Ransom ???????????.

          the Low college [what law college] educated kurunegala MP kabaraya, and his brother,the geneve convention worshiping ]
          Hothambaya

    • 9
      0

      To the likes of Wijedasa these are all heroic acts done to protect the mother land. Not only must GR be arrested he has to be subjected to the same medicine he gave his victims. I suspect he will squeel long before the medicine is administered.

  • 10
    3

    Maxwell Paranagama has responded by saying ” No witnesses corroborated to him during the inquiry of MISSING PERSONS of this TORTURE CAMP in the Naval Base of Trincomalee.
    His conscience speaks now, where his conscience did not allow him to go against his employer’s mission of missing the @deads when he ultimately prepared the report.
    It is absolutely clear that whoever had been taken to this Naval Torture Camp had been killed and thrown into the deep sea, and there is nobody to witness the process, but for the inscriptions on the walls of torture camp.

    Eminent deaths have left some message.

    • 3
      0

      Maxwell Paranagama just creamed the system for months and found nothing. Go figure.

  • 10
    2

    RE: No Arrest On Gota’s Torture Camp; Navy Silent

    “A highly placed Navy official said today that the secret torture camp the United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID) is referring to could be the one commander Sampath Munasinghe, the personal bodyguard of the former Navy commander retired Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda had kept Tamil youth who were abducted in Colombo.”

    “CID informed courts that a group accompanied by Munasinghe abducted five youths in Dehiwela area in 2009. They have also demanded a ransom of Rs. 10 million from the relatives of the abducted youths.”

    Any Surprise as to why they are silent? Because they know it ALL.

    What was Gotabaya Rajapaksas’s cut?

  • 7
    1

    “We are willing to investigate……………………………..”
    The UN group has recommended in detail the action that should be taken with regard to this secret detention/torture camp, and on abolition of the PTA.

    This tame response from the Foreign Ministry spokesperson appears to show that the ministry is “not in a hurry” to “investigate”.

    Why is this? Is it because the so-called ‘war-heros’ are involved?
    Is the regime afraid to offend the army?

    In any other democracy, persons thus named by a UN working group would have been relieved of their duties and the Chief of Police and the Human Rights Commission would have been ordered to investigate expeditiously.

    Will the army and police now hound those who gave evidence before the UN group?

    Is the Sirisena regime equal to, or worse than the Mahinda Rajapakse regime with regard to human rights?

    • 0
      0

      Sirisena thinks that he can send Samaweera out to wax lyrically and with enough time he can convince the world that they should be happy with what they have got in Sri Lanka. I think Sirisena misunderstands that this time it is different. The world now knows “Sri Lanka’ and going along with them now would be to be complicit in genocide and Tamils the world over are watching. Further, if Sri Lanka can evade international law, then so too will many many other despots. So Sirisena has a problem.

  • 0
    0

    The lacadasikal attitude to this affair by the Govt. re Human Rights is that this is
    more a Tamils Rights – a subject that is taboo for any pronouncemt by MS or Mangala,
    after their heroism at the last UN forum in co-sponsoring a US Resolution. This way
    they have cheated the I/C again and locally assured that the Forces will be defended
    by the State.

    The Named Officers must be questioned by the Police under the laws of the Country – over
    to the IGP.

    Has the visit of the UN Officers prompted someone to release some who were claimed
    missing?

  • 0
    2

    This UN team had got excited about nothing. Looks like what they are referring as a torture chamber is a detention center during the war. Every country including US have sites like these when fighting terrorist.

    • 4
      0

      Ha, my namesake….

      What US had also a torture camp…

      Let’s admit what we did before finding excuses.

    • 0
      0

      No no no, the military really did take the UN on a guided tour of their super secret torture camp :D After all they wouldn’t have had the benefit of a superior We Thamizh IQ to realise maybe that’s a teeny bit stupid :D

  • 6
    0

    He He He so atlast UN staff visited these secret camps once denied by Murderpakse & Co ….good start

    Tomorrow UN security staff will land in this cursed Sri Lanka and take these murderers & rapists in handcuff..like what they did to Charles Taylor ex-president of Nigeria who was hiding in Nigeria.

    The difference is these Murderpakses have no place to hide…

    Cheers

    • 1
      1

      Dream on

      as long Banki Moon is the Sec Gen this is not going to happen

  • 8
    0

    JR during the 1983 anti Tamil Pogrom called it a Civilisation in crisis.[2500 years of Sinhala civilisation according to him].

    Even after the defeat of the LTTE IN 2009,if these Torture Chambers existed and fully operational,in Trinco,Colombo,Vavuniya etc what do we call this;Crisis of Buddhist Theravada civilisation?

  • 1
    6

    Rohan,
    No need to find excuses. We needed to find unconventional methods to fight the world’s most ruthless terrorist organization. We should all be thankful to MR for bringing all of us peace and ending terrorist once and for all.

  • 4
    0

    No Tamil will rest until the Gota the mass murderer along with his pakse clan and other associates are brought before an International court of justice.

  • 1
    0

    Intimidation, verbal abuse, physical assault, torture from mild to moderate to extreme is normal by any forces and police to elicit information. Countless lives have been lost due to extreme torture. They may be innocent or maybe not
    and the authorities don’t care. Physical abuse by the police is rampant and is happening in full view of the public which is even recorded and circulated in the internet for everybody to see but nothing happens, and life goes on. Because this is Sri Lanka and if you are the ordinary “Punchisingho” then just mind your own business and get about your chores or be prepared to face the music.
    If you talk about rights you can complain to the Human Rights. Thereafter comes the Police rights who will “get to you” by their “justified means”
    MR wanted to be the king so that he could suppress the masses fully but unfortunately for him he failed in his bid and unfortunately for the masses we have My3 and RW and a whole lot in the cabinet of ministers, all wolves in sheeps clothing. Some are not even hiding behind any clothing , they just appear as they are, ie; as wolves, and carry on plundering and looting as it was part of their public duties.
    MR may have lost his crown but he is still the master puppeteer and My3 and RW
    are aware of it as they too are his puppets.
    The masses like to get fooled all the time because they are used to that life.
    Personally I wish to see a government who would keep out of all religious faiths. There is no need to waste a minister to every faith like we have now.
    I wish for a honest government that would develop its people and the country.

  • 0
    2

    Tomsam,
    No sinhalese will rest until murderer terrorist prabakarn and the rest of the terrorist are killed, oh wait a minute we did that. Now we will not rest until the terrorist supporters are made irelevant.. already hapenning.

    • 0
      0

      he he he ..when LTTE war at their peak all of you were hiding under bed hugging your wives…..

      Your card board forces have no ..muscle…no brain…to suppress them .this is 30 years history

      .it was possible only due to the Chemical weapons supplied by poverty India

      Cheers

  • 2
    0

    Here is the truth on the detention center

    Secret torture chamber’ at Trinco base: Karannagoda debunks UN claim
    November 21, 2015, 7:59 am


    by Shamindra Ferdinando

    War-time Navy Chief Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda yesterday strongly rebutted accusations that there had been a secret detention facility within the Trincomalee naval base during the eelam war IV.

    He said that during the war renegade LTTE cadres had been accommodated at the Trinco facility which some interested parties now wanted to portray as a torture chamber. “We didn’t operate torture chambers at the Trinco base or any other command. There was no requirement to do so.”

    A substantial number of LTTE dissidents had thrown their weight behind the combined military campaign directed at the LTTE, Karannagoda said, adding that the Navy had no option but to accommodate them in a previously unused building. “We used British-time air raid shelters,” the naval veteran said, alleging that a despicable attempt was being made to bring the war winning military into disrepute.

    The former navy chief was responding to a statement attributed to the United Nation’s Working Group’s Vice-Chair Bernard Duhaime, Tae-Ung Baik,and Ariel Dulitzky that they had access to Trinco torture chamber. The statement was made at the UN mission in Colombo at the end of a 10-day visit.

    Navy headquarters allowed the visit on a government directive.

    Responding to a query, the retired Admiral emphasized that members of various Tamil groups had worked closely with the military over the years. In the 80s, they fought alongside the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF) against the LTTE, Karannagoda recalled.

    Karannagoda said that hundreds of well trained cadres, especially from the Batticaloa-Ampara region had served the military after they deserted the LTTE in April 2004. One-time Sri Lanka’s Ambassador in Tokyo said that ex-LTTE cadres also conducted joint operations with the elite Special Boat Squadron (SBS) against the LTTE in the wake of the then government ordering air strikes on Sampur.

    Karannagoda insisted that the rehabilitation and reintegration of nearly 12,000 LTTE cadres to the society at the end of the war proved the sincerity of the government as well as the military. The former diplomat said that no less person than one-time Attorney General Tilak Marapana had reminded the country the way interested parties jeopardised a major intelligence operation in early 2002.

    Karannagoda said that the visiting UN team was probably not aware how the war time UN mission in Colombo had secretly negotiated with the LTTE to secure the release of Tamil speaking local UN employees detained by the LTTE. They had earned the wrath of the LTTE by helping some Tamils to escape the LTTE-held Vanni to secure refuge in the government-held area in early 2007, Karannagoda said.

    Karannagoda alleged that the ridiculous allegation directed at the navy was obviously part of their strategy to hold the country responsible for alleged atrocities committed during the war. The retired officer expressed disappointment that some had conveniently forgotten the sacrifices made by the military to bring the LTTE to its knees.

    Karannagoda said that many of those who had been categorised as missing were living overseas. The recent Paris massacre revealed how borders could be accessed using various travel documents and exploiting ground situation. The country was being punished for eradicating terrorism, a disgusted Karannagoda said, whatever the propaganda the vast majority of Tamil speaking people were free to move on with their lives since May 2009.

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  • 1
    0

    Let the truth come out. Let there be justice for the victims.

  • 4
    0

    Arrest this low life global pariah and hang him immediately. Before you hang him, skin the scoundrel and then hang him. A painful death is what this bas&*&d deserves for what he has done to the people of this beautiful country.

  • 0
    1

    Cholan,
    You can say anything you want, but the fact is the brave SL army got rid of the biggest terrorist organization including the big fat cry baby leader prabakaran.

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