Addressing an event in Matara, Sirisena said the President of the Philippines, whom he met a few weeks ago, did not stop at giving death penalty to drug dealers, but also executed drug users.
“In the Philippines, the drug dealers are sent to the electric chair. India also gives death penalty to drug dealers. So does the United States. I too will do that,” Sirisena said.
Sirisena said the drug dealers were capable of toppling governments and changing the fate of a nation. He also added that those who belittle his campaign against drugs are funded by drug networks.
However, many prominent bodies, including the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka, have expressed displeasure over President Sirisena’s threat to reimpose death penalty on drug offenders.
Writing a letter to Sirisena last year, Dr. Deepika Udugama, the Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) urged him to ‘do away with the decision to re-implement capital punishment.’
The Commission instead recommended ‘a series of strong and long term policies including strengthening of the law institutions and procedures aimed at addressing serious crimes including drug trafficking. International human rights watchdogs have also condemned Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal war on drugs.