Sri Lanka rights activists face growing dangers


In March Sri Lankan police used anti-terror laws to arrest and detain J.S. Tissanayagam, a prominent journalist working for The Sunday Times, a maistream English-language weekly. After two weeks behind bars he was finally served a detention order charging him with engaging in terrorist activities, which today in Sri Lanka can be interpreted as criticising the government. In the last year, with a return to war and a rapidly deteriorating human rights situation, Sri Lanka has very slowly managed to grab a few international headlines…. Sri Lanka is now one of the most dangerous places in the world for human rights defenders – broadly defined to include journalists, aid workers, activists, NGO workers and religious leaders.

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