18 September, 2020

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WikiLeaks: Nugegoda mob attack was directed by Presidential Secretariat

Colombo Telegraph –

“A senior police officer (protect) confided to Pol FSN: ‘police received instructions from the Presidential Secretariat to stop the rally and to assault participants if SIPDIS they did not adhere to the police instructions to disband.’ The police source added that the Presidential Secretariat further instructed the police not to arrest the group led by Deputy Minister Silva. Local journalists told the BBC January 9 that ‘police did not arrive to prevent the attacks by about 100 thugs.’” the US Embassy Colombo informed Washington.

Deputy Minister Mervin Silva with underworld gangs at Nugegoda rally

The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeak database. The cable classified as “CONFIDENTIAL” details Nugegoda mob attack led by Deputy Minister of Labor Mervyn Silva. The cable was written on January 10, 2007 by the US Ambassador to Colombo Robert O. Blake.

Ambassador Blake wrote “On January 9 a mob led by Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) Deputy Minister of Labor Mervyn Silva attacked demonstrators at a peace rally in Colombo organized by the United People’s Movement (UPM), according to credible media reports. The UPM represents a range of opposition political parties, including the main opposition United National Party (UNP), and socialist and Tamil parties, in support of political power sharing between Sinhalese and Tamil-speaking communities within a united Sri Lanka. The mob severely beat Ajith Senaviratne a journalist from the government-critical Ravaya newspaper.”

“United National Party (UNP) Member of Parliament Dayasiri Jayasekara, a co-founder of the UPM who took part in the peace rally, confirmed to Pol FSN on January 10 that he had witnessed Deputy Minister Silva at the demonstration ‘with well over 50 thugs attacking the rally participants.’ Deputy Minister Silva, an outspoken nationalist, has often disrupted peace rallies during the Chandrika Kumaratunga and Mahinda Rajapaksa Presidencies.” he wrote.

Placing a comment ambassador Blake wrote “The allegation from our police source linking the Presidential Secretariat to an order to permit the disruption of a peaceful political rally is disturbing. It is inconsistent with the government’s pro- political solution message to the international community. Many of the participants came from the “reform” wing of the opposition UNP. The mission will raise our concerns with Acting Foreign Secretary DeSilva and seek an opportunity to do the same with the Presidential Secretariat. Septel will report on the likelihood of defections from other elements of the UNP to the government in the next few days.”

Read the cable below for further details;

C O N F I D E N T I A L COLOMBO 000045

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR SCA/INS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 01/10/2016
TAGS: PGOV PREL PTER PHUM MOPS CE
SUBJECT: SRI LANKA: MINISTER'S "THUGS" BEAT JOURNALIST AT
ANTI-WAR PROTEST

Classified By: Ambassador Robert O. Blake, Jr., for reasons 1.4(b,d).

1. (C) Summary:  The BBC and several local independent news
agencies reported that on January 9 a mob led by Sri Lanka
Freedom Party (SLFP) Deputy Minister of Labor Mervyn Silva
attacked participants at a peace rally in Colombo organized
by the United People's Movement (UPM), an organization
representing a range of opposition political parties,
including the main opposition United National Party (UNP),
leftist and Tamil parties.  The mob severely beat Ajith
Senaviratne, a journalist from the government-critical Ravaya
("Rumor") newspaper.  The rally organizers and a confidential
police source alleged that the order to disrupt the peace
demonstration came from the Presidential Secretariat.  End
summary.

Mervyn's Mob
------------

2. (C) On January 9 a mob led by Sri Lanka Freedom Party
(SLFP) Deputy Minister of Labor Mervyn Silva attacked
demonstrators at a peace rally in Colombo organized by the
United People's Movement (UPM), according to credible media
reports.  The UPM represents a range of opposition political
parties, including the main opposition United National Party
(UNP), and socialist and Tamil parties, in support of
political power sharing between Sinhalese and Tamil-speaking
communities within a united Sri Lanka.  The mob severely beat
Ajith Senaviratne a journalist from the government-critical
Ravaya ("Rumor") newspaper.

3. (C) United National Party (UNP) Member of Parliament
Dayasiri Jayasekara, a co-founder of the UPM who took part in
the peace rally, confirmed to Pol FSN on January 10 that he
had witnessed Deputy Minister Silva at the demonstration
"with well over 50 thugs attacking the rally participants."
Deputy Minister Silva, an outspoken nationalist, has often
disrupted peace rallies during the Chandrika Kumaratunga and
Mahinda Rajapaksa Presidencies.

Police Inactive
---------------

4. (C) United People's Movement (UPM) and Civil Monitoring
Committee (CMC) co-founder (and a Tamil Member of Parliament)
Mano Ganesan told Pol FSN that Sri Lanka Muslim Congress
leader Rauff Hakeem and Tamil National Alliance MP Suresh
Premachandran were preparing to address the rally when "a mob
of 150 persons led by Mervyn Silva arrived at the site of the
meeting... and smashed the flags, stage and PA system all in
the presence of journalists.  We had advance information that
our rally might be threatened and requested police
protection, but the police arrived only after the mob had
left."  Ganesan added: "The mob attack shows the GSL is not
serious about power sharing or a political solution.  Mervyn
would not do this on his own."

5. (C) A senior police officer (protect) confided to Pol FSN:
"police received instructions from the Presidential
Secretariat to stop the rally and to assault participants if

SIPDIS
they did not adhere to the police instructions to disband."
The police source added that the Presidential Secretariat
further instructed the police not to arrest the group led by
Deputy Minister Silva.  Local journalists told the BBC
January 9 that "police did not arrive to prevent the attacks
by about 100 thugs."

6. (C) COMMENT:  The allegation from our police source
linking the Presidential Secretariat to an order to permit
the disruption of a peaceful political rally is disturbing.
It is inconsistant with the government's pro- political
solution message to the international community.  Many of the
participants came from the "reform" wing of the opposition
UNP.  The mission will raise our concerns with Acting Foreign
Secretary DeSilva and seek an opportunity to do the same with

SIPDIS
the Presidential Secretariat.  Septel will report on the
likelihood of defections from other elements of the UNP to
the government in the next few days.
BLAKE
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Latest comments

  • 1
    0

    Every attack including Grease Devils is directed from HE’s office or MOD

    • 0
      0

      a public secret. At least good that one person has the guts to write it.

  • 0
    0

    UNP rallies r never peaceful, they drink and the language used during these meetings, so called peaceful ones r terrible, better to nip it in the bud!
    Our ppl – when were they ever united in doing somehting peaceful???
    give me an example ?

    • 0
      0

      hello, why bad comment only on UNP rallies? What about other rallies? you mean to say that only UNP rallies are never peaceful. Shame to read this. Everybody is the same. Here the joke is that the government openly involves in dirty games, harassing the public.

  • 0
    0

    What is the main task of US E MBASSY IN SRI LANKA, TO SPY SRI LANKAN POLITICAL THINGS OR TO ISSUE VISAS? OR TO fuel terrorism in Sri Lanka?

    • 0
      0

      that’s what the aliens do. relax

    • 0
      0

      MAHASONA is quite right. Mahasona, it is at least the US Embassy that give this information to us. Who else ? Why is government not doing anything to this , if in case the US Embassy is wrong or giving false info? can you nominate the GARAA YAKAA to take over?

  • 0
    0

    US ambassdor was in Sri Lanka was tiger sympathiser and funded by LTTE , he gets everymonth $10,000 to speak against srilankan goverrnment and still he is getting , tell the truth blake

    • 0
      0

      MAHASONA, why dont you talk to so called HE of SL and he does not take action against the said ambassador?

  • 0
    0

    Once again this website does it again, putting out the hot news and the news that needs to be heard. Keep up the amazing work

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