19th November 2015

One Of Many Gota`s Camps Discovered by UN Officials.

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

The secret camp within the naval base in the eastern town of Trincomalee was an `important discovery`, a top team of UN experts investigating disappearances in Sri Lanka told journalists in Colombo on 18 Wednesday. Led by Bernard Duhaime, the UN working group on enforced and involuntary disappearance (UNWGEID) had visited the underground torture site known as `Gota`s Camp` during their ten day stay in Sri Lanka. Prime minister Ranil`s denial Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe had vehemently denied the existence of many such secret torture sites despite exposures by Tamil politicians, grass roots activists and rights organisations including JDS. Visiting UN team member Ariel Dulitzky expressed fear that many taken to Gota`s Camp would have been killed People would have been saved had there been […]

Sri Lanka to improve living standards in former war-torn north

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO, Nov. 19 (Xinhua) — The Sri Lankan government on Thursday said it will launch special projects in war-ravaged north to improve living conditions of the families residing there. Co-Cabinet Spokesperson and Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka told a media briefing here that on a proposal submitted to the cabinet by Minister of Rehabilitation and Resettlement, D.M. Swaminathan, the government had approved implementation of ten projects to upgrade the living status of these communities. The projects are also to be implemented for the families who are residing in more than six islands around the northern Jaffna peninsula, Karunathilaka added. The projects include upgrading the transport system in these areas for families to travel from the islands to the mainland, Karunathilaka said. Sri Lanka’s north was one […]

GTF news update for 19th November 2015

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS UN expert group urges Sri Lanka to seize the moment to fulfil the rights of the families of the disappeared < http://www.ohchr.org/EN/newsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=16772&LangID=E  > THE ISLAND TNA meets UNWGD, wants truth seeking mechanisms established < http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=135527  > TAMIL GUARDIAN UN confirms existence of secret torture camps in Sri Lanka, calls on gov to reveal other possible locations < http://www.tamilguardian.com/article.asp?articleid=16482  > YAHOO NEWS **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** UN experts demand action over suspected secret Sri Lankan prisons < https://in.news.yahoo.com/un-experts-demand-action-over-133941404.html  > CEYLON TODAY UN Group visits Trinco torture chamber < http://www.ceylontoday.lk/51-109833-news-detail-un-group-visits-trinco-torture-chamber.html  > DAILY MIRROR **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** Another eleven LTTE cadres re-remanded < http://www.dailymirror.lk/95885/another-eleven-ltte-cadres-re-remanded  > CEYLON TODAY We need the PTA < http://ceylontoday.lk/89-109671-news-detail-we-need-the-pta.html  > COLOMBO GAZETTE **COMMENTS CAN BE POSTED** US envoy to UN Samantha Power to visit Jaffna < http://colombogazette.com/2015/11/18/us-envoy-to-un-samantha-power-to-visit-jaffna/  […]

Penang forum on search for peace in Sri Lanka

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

by P Ramasamy Last year around November, the Penang Society of Advancement of Tamils (PSAT) organised an international conference on Tamils with the sub-theme of ‘in search for an identity’. One of the topics that were discussed was the extent of human rights violations in Sri Lanka and why the international community was dragging its feet in terms of investigation and punishing those responsible for crimes against humanity. This year, on Nov 21, PSAT will be organising an international forum with a specific focus on human rights violations in Sri Lanka and the way forward. The primary concern of the organisers is to examine critically the report published by the Office of United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) or the OISL Report on […]

UN experts demand action over suspected secret Sri Lankan prisons

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

UN experts Wednesday urged Sri Lanka to speed up probes into suspected secret detention centres after they inspected a former illegal prison complex in the island’s northeast during their visit. Wrapping up a 10-day trip to the country, the UN delegation said it toured the little-known 12-cell prison hidden inside a sprawling naval base in the port city of Trincomalee. The prison had markings on the walls that indicated people were still being held there until 2010 — one year after the island’s long-running separatist war ended, the group said. “It is likely that there are many more like this,” said Ariel Dulitzky, a member of the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances. “Trincomalee is a success story in detecting illegal detention centres.” […]

Ranjan Ramanayake Files Complaint At Bribery Commission On ‘Avant Garde Voice Clips’

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

Deputy Minister Ranjan Ramanayake lodged a complaint with the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption with two voice clips allegedly related to the Avant Garde controversy. The voice clips are recordings of two telephone conversations between Avant Garde Maritime Services Chairman Major (retired) Nissanka Senadhipathi and Minister Rajitha Senaratne’s Secretary Sayuru Samarasundara. The first of the clips was released to the internet yesterday, which indicates that Senadhipathi had given Rs 5 million for Dr. Senaratne’s election campaign. However, a second clip was released by Senaratne’s Facebook Page, which apparently indicated that Senaratne rejected the money. Speaking to media today, Ramanayake said that the voice clips prove that a financial transaction did take place. Although Senaratne apparently rejected the bribe, his secretary had accepted […]

TNA meets UNWGD, wants truth seeking mechanisms established

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

by Zacki Jabbar The Tamil National Alliance ( TNA) has stressed the importance of establishing the required judicial and truth seeking mechanisms to ascertain the fate of persons who had disappeared or were under detention. Jaffna District TNA MP M. A. Sumanthiran during a meeting with the visiting UN Working Group on Disappearances ( UNWGD) in Colombo yesterday had raised the concerns expressed by families of persons who had gone missing or detained without trial for long periods, informed sources said. The TNA MP stressed the importance of judicial and truth seeking mechanisms being established with a sense of urgency, according to sources. MP Sumanthiran called for continued involvement of the UNWGD until the truth was established. The visiting UNWGD delegation headed by Vice Chair Bernard […]

UN expert group urges Sri Lanka to seize the moment to fulfil the rights of the families of the disappeared

19th November 2015 // 0 Comments

COLOMBO / GENEVA (18 November 2015) – “Sri Lanka has the opportunity to once and for all meet the rights and legitimate expectations of thousands of families of disappeared,” a delegation of the United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances said today. “Families have waited too long – the time for action has come.” “The widespread use of enforced disappearances for many decades has left profound wounds in the society and a deep sense of mistrust among the relatives,” stressed the Group’s Vice-Chair Bernard Duhaime, Tae-Ung Baik, and Ariel Dulitzky at the end of an official visit* to the country. The experts noted an almost complete lack of accountability and decisive and sustained efforts to search for the truth – in particular the […]