23 June, 2024


To Shoot At People Who Raise Their Hands In Surrender Is Illegal – Weliweriya Residents

As the death toll rose to three from the Weliweriya clashes on Thursday night, enraged residents told the BBC the morning after the incident that security forces personnel had pursued and attacked people inside the St. Anthony’s Church in the area.

“According to internationally accepted rules of war it is illegal to attack people inside a hospital, a religious place of worship or a school,” one resident of Weliweriya told the BBC.

“It is also against these rules to shoot at people who raise their hands in surrender. You can arrest them and prosecute them. You cannot shoot them. It is a lowly group who did not even know these international laws that attacked this church,” he said in the interview.

Residents said that there were bullet holes and bloodstains at the church. They said the parish grounds had been filled that night with people seeking refuge and looking for their loved ones who had gone to demonstrate against the contamination of ground water in the area.

Eyewitnesses to the alleged storming of the parish grounds by masked security forces personnel say young boys were made to kneel and mercilessly beaten.

“There was blood pouring from their noses and mouths. They pushed me with their assault rifles,” one woman told the BBC.

Even as a tight security cordon was thrown around the Weliweriya town as residents prepared to mourn the death of 17 year old Akila Dinesh, the first victim of the violence, the Colombo National Hospital reported that a third victim, 29 year old Nilantha had succumbed to his injuries, bringing the death toll to three.

Despite the official figures citing only Akila’s death, residents vowed that the casualties had been higher after seeing their friends and neighbours fall beside them as soldiers deployed to quell the demonstration fired into the crowd.

The Government moved in large contingents of Special Task Force personnel and Riot Squads into Weliweriya last night to ensure crowds of mourners did not get unruly during the funeral, eyewitnesses said.

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Latest comments

  • 1

    The Water Terrorists should be wiped out just like the LTTE terrorists.

    After all they both did/ not have a real cause to rise up?

    They could have after all drank bottled water instead of protesting.

    Same with the tamils they should not have protested all the discriminating laws including sinahala only. they should also have brought all their food and water from tamil nadu.

    otherwise they will all be shot just like the water terrorists.

  • 0

    if these Army is shooting own Sinhala people, what would have they done in Tamil Areas? wow, i can imagine that…

    • 0

      These were innocent people who merely wanted clean drinking water…unlike the separatist suicide bombers and their sympathisers.

      • 0

        LTTE and its sympathizer were also innocent people in 1956 and up to 1983 until they decided to take arms and retaliate. Whom you say innocent now may turn naxalite or armed one, it is the state that decides mostly the state of people

  • 0

    They did not ask for bread, cake or wine. They wanted water to drink and this wanton destruction of young lives in such manner is atrocious. They were not given a chance. bensen

  • 0

    And yet when Namal, Dayasiri, etc arrive in their Hummers and drive thru town in a parade of Hummers our local idiots will raise the sarong and vote for the bastards. Such is the mind set of our people.

  • 0

    Dear Voice of Justice,

    Not only Weliweriya, there was also Katunayake and Negombo and how many more to come….. ? though God forbid. When perceptive COMMON DECENT people (not the Dayan’s or the Rajivas. Malindas or others now making cautious bleating noises in their corners), wrote about what happened sans Media, journalists or any TV coverage in the North and how the same treatment would be given meted out one day to those who would dare oppose the government in the South, they were roundly abused in filth by the kiribath eating cracker lighting and flag waving deshapremis as Traitors, NGO kakkas, Tiger supporters etc. I am sorry to say some of our Muslim brethren were the most vociferous of the lot.

    Yet compare what happened at Weliweriya, Katunayake and Negombo with the criminal attacks led by identified saffron robed persons on Muslim owned businesses, mosques as well as on Christian churches. Did mealy mouthed army spokesmen and others rush to maintain peace, law and order. Were the attackers beaten up and shot at ?

    The Army and the Police have become nothing but the private goon squads of the ruling politicians. Didn’t we see pictures in the media about high ranking officers saluting and holding the hands of a well known criminal politician.

    The fun and games will go on for the Ruling classes, their business cronies and the selfish middle classes with Rugger carnivals, Road races, Commonwealth summits, casinos, luxury walking tracks, under Army and Police protection and salutes !!!!

    Sadly there will be only tear gas, bullets, guns, beatings, abuse, tears and death for those who ask for clean drinking water, a decent wage, right to their land, freedom of expression and belief.

    Once again Pastor Niemoller’s words ring true ” … and then they came for me and there was no one left to speak for me”

    A true epitaph for the Sri Lanka of our times

  • 0

    I agree entirely with Solomon Baas. The
    Editor of the Daily News is writing from
    fantasy land.

    He should not be hired by the Scotland
    Yard. But I doubt they will take him
    because they require at least three feet
    ten inches. Rajpal is shorter. Why I say
    he is good for the Scotland Yard is because
    he can identify the bullets fired by
    a warring faction. See his article and
    picture in the front page.

    Some hazy pictures (like the one taken on
    the moon) has circles. And he say they are
    the ones who attacked. Did you say short
    sighted Solomon Bass? Yes, you are right.
    Sometime he is blind to truth too.

  • 0

    I symapthise with the people -this attrocious act.

    Shot,murdered and raped bodies were thrown into WELLS in the north and east.people did not have any clean water to drink.

    Gotabaya instructed them to throw all into the well,human bodies,animals even broken furniture etc.
    everywherein SL there is mayhem.
    Singhala south voted the R’s in and were happy with roads,kudu,kiribath etc.
    Where does the country go from here.The south must decide.
    North and East has been SHUT down.There is no DEMOCRACY.

    It is a DEMO – CRAZY Island.

  • 0

    Thank you CT for bringing us the Video clips.

    Also CT with the help of a Free Media should do extencive research, investigation, interviews and live recordings with these Rajapakse instigated genocide wictims and should bring them to public.

    It is no point having an Opposition to be in the Parliament if Rajapakses think that they could run the country the way they want.

    If Rajapakses think they together with Racist Terrorists BBS along with criminal thug gangs and Gotabaya’s personal Murderous Assasin Army force along with goon Chief justice could run the country, then let it be and the opposition should boycott the parliament.

    Otherwise if opposition have the least concern of Citizens, then they should call for International Investigations and should bring perpetrators to books.

    The video clips show these poor people are helpless ones status and even in the past they were never given justice.

    It is time to call for an Intenational independent investigation and also cvall in for International Peace keeping force until things are settled down in the country.

    There’s a strong possibility that Rakapakses will carry on these Genocidal killings in future and it is time to make a stop now.


    All opposition parties should press for International community to come to rescue Sri Lankan citizens from Rajapakse Dictatorial Regime.


  • 0

    This is a sad tragedy. I hope all Sri Lankans can unite against Rajapakse. I am looking forward to hearing from M.A. Sumanthiran on this sick event.

  • 0

    No noise form the Cardinal? His flock are the people of Weliveriya or is it the perpetrators?

  • 0

    The people get the govenment they deserve

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