20 September, 2021

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Sri Lankan Authorities Falter On Accountability In ‘Navy 11’ Case: Amnesty International

The Sri Lankan Attorney General’s Department today decided not to proceed with charges against  Wasantha Karannagoda, a former Navy commander, over his alleged role in the abduction of 11 Tamil youth in 2008 and 2009. The Sri Lankan Navy is alleged to have been behind the forcible disappearance of the “Navy 11”.

Wasantha Karannagoda

Responding to the decision Yamini Mishra, Amnesty International’s Asia-Pacific Director, said:

“Sri Lanka has the world’s second highest number of enforced disappearances, with tens of thousands of people forcibly disappeared over many decades. This case was an opportunity for the Sri Lankan authorities to deliver justice for crimes under international law, by ensuring that those reasonably suspected of criminal responsibility, including those implicated for aiding and abetting and under command responsibility, are brought to trial.

“This case has already been beset by obstacles in the Sri Lankan courts, and today’s decision pushes justice further out of reach for the families of victims. The AG’s department must explain the reasons for its decision, and Sri Lankan authorities must deliver truth, justice and reparations for all victims of enforced disappearance.”

The “Navy 11” case refers to the enforced disappearance of 11 Tamil youth in 2008-2009, allegedly in an abduction racket spearheaded by members of the Sri Lankan Navy. Senior military commanders are implicated.

In August 2018 the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the police arrested Lt. Commander Chandana Prasad Hettiarachchi, alias “Navy Sampath”, as the main suspect. The CID accused then Chief of Defence Staff Admiral Ravindra Wijeguneratne of shielding one of the main suspects, and the court also ordered his arrest. In February 2019, former Commander of the Sri Lanka Navy, Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda, was named as the 14th suspect in the case. He was accused of having known about the enforced disappearance by naval personnel he had command responsibility over, and choosing to take no action. On 4 August 2021, media reported that the Attorney General’s department had decided not to proceed with charges against Karannagoda.

The case has faced many obstacles in the Sri Lankan courts. In January 2020, President Gotabaya Rajapaksa appointed a Presidential Commission of Inquiry into “political victimization” under the previous government. Many state officials facing trial over human rights violations have complained of being “politically targeted” by the previous government, and have sought the Commission’s support in absolving them from ongoing court cases. As a result, the Commission has intervened in cases that are pending before courts, especially where military members are implicated.

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Latest comments

  • 28
    2

    What a ‘surprise’

    • 19
      2

      soman

      What do you have to say about Wasantha Karannagoda?
      Does the wife share the same bed?
      Do the children know about what their dad did in their name?

      The clan and the country is in lot of difficulty.
      You should start the next riot in order to divert attention, I am sure saffron clad thugs are ready and waiting.

      • 1
        1

        NV,
        Navy Sampath is quietly listening.

    • 6
      5

      Do you really think USA, UNHRC, UK, Australia, Japan, India, Russia, China, Belgium, Canada, France and Germany do not know these?

      They know! Still they donate warships to SL, train SL Navy and engage with SL Navy for joint military drills.

      A winner has many fathers. A loser is always an orphan.

      Welcome to Earth!

    • 4
      0

      “It has pursued a policy of acquitting a large number of key individuals, the supporters of the Government, from the cases filed against them. Some of these cases were not the ones filed during the previous Yahapalana regime. Several of them constitute cases filed before that. Some cases can be considered as the ones that have been heard over a long period and the allegations have been virtually substantiated, and the proceedings nearing completion.”
      ]

      • 3
        0

        All these people set free from prosecution are the supporters of the regime and they are required to prop them at the next hustings to win with enhanced majority!
        They will use all the pliant servers to assist in achieving their “cherished” goal!
        Await more surprises from these deal makers.
        They are batter than the Americans in making “Deals”, learnt from Americans, whilst restocking shelves and pumping fuel!.
        Don’t blame the voters only; It is more the fault of the Yahapalanaya government not prosecuting the wrong doers as promised during 2015 elections, which made people to believe the accusations were not real and fantasy by Maithripala, Ranil et all.
        Those 2 are the foxy serpents under the grass and responsible for the current mess, without doubt!

  • 35
    3

    Sri Lanka has the world’s second highest number of enforced disappearances
    ———-
    Is this why they call it the ‘wonder of asia’ ?
    Because it makes you ‘wonder’ how so much evil can occur in such a small island!

    • 15
      2

      Bye-bye GSP! Or will Basil the Magician now find a way to reverse this, just like the fertilizer ban?

  • 26
    2

    This [Edited out] AG should have resign before giving orders,he jeopardize not only the judiciary but let the whole lankans down,how this thug ……..

    • 0
      0

      How can this country ever progress when cold blooded murderers are just let loose with top posts as compensation.

  • 35
    1

    The action of the court proves beyond any doubt that Sri Lankan Judiciary is corrupt and bias. AG, Justice Minister, and the Judges must face international travel ban from law-abiding countries.

  • 7
    1

    Rajapaksas are done with prosperous and splendor nation now working on creating lawful moral citizens.

  • 15
    1

    This only proves that this country has no men of integrity and principles. Shame on AG, CJ and the lot.

  • 11
    2

    soman

    What do you have to say about Wasantha Karannagoda?
    Does the wife share the same bed?
    Do the children know about what their dad did in their name?

    The clan and the country is in lot of difficulty.
    You should start the next riot in order to divert attention, I am sure saffron clad thugs are ready and waiting.

  • 11
    1

    There are two 15 yrs old girls case going on ,for one wide range of coverage and publicity,the other one no one knows anything about the case and how the case progressing……
    One country one law

    • 2
      0

      Cugan: Shhhhhhh, Sinhala Buddhist involved means dragging on till no one is looking and then throw under carpet. Even a deaf and dumb person can smell that this is a failed state and the sooner one gets the hell out of this place the better for any decent human being.

  • 14
    1

    Hope someone capable will carefully scrutinize all these high profile cases that have been thrown out since 2019 on some technical issue in the plaint and which could have been refiled but were not. Because it is certainly getting curiouser and curiouser.

  • 5
    1

    Jehan Perara’s wanted show is starting with climax scene.

  • 16
    1

    Lets assume the High-Court heard this case and the EX: Navy Chief was convicted.
    Lets also assume he appealed all the way to the Supreme Court and the conviction was upheld.
    Still, he will get away with a Presidential pardon.
    This is why Srilanka is a Land Like No Other.

  • 13
    1

    The High Criminal will always protect the Lesser Criminals as they are his steadfast supporters!

  • 5
    0

    Even if they were convicted they get a presidential pardon.

    Look what happened to Sunil, 2000 Binthunuwawa killers of Tamil prisoners, 1983 Magazine prison killers, etc., etc.

    This is Sri Lanka. Accept it and live under it.

    Do you still want to be part of Sri Lanka? Or do you want a separate nation to live with dignity and self respect? Only if you value dignity and self respect!!

  • 0
    0

    This abductor Navy hero must be punished now with at least an ambassador post. What a pathetic country run a ruthless, shameless crooks and supported by 6.9 million morons.

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