World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


The Police Torture Epidemic in Sri Lanka -- a documentary

SRI LANKA: The Police Torture Epidemic in Sri Lanka -- a documentary

(Hong Kong, May 10, 2012) The Asian Human Rights Commission wishes to announce the release of a new documentary entitled: The police torture epidemic in Sri Lanka.

Directed filed and edited by Josefina Bergsten; translated by Harshi Perera and Nilantha Illangamuwa; sound editing by Mark Chappell of Fork Media. The film was produced by Pictures by the Wayside and sponsored by the Asian Human Rights Commission, Hong Kong and the Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Torture (RCT Denmark) -- length 21 minutes.

In this film several victims talk about their experience of torture by the Sri Lankan police and the continuing ordeals they suffer, psychologically and socially due to this torture. All of them state that their arrests were baseless and that after their arrest the police tortured them even before asking any questions at all. Torture has been used as a means of trying to collect evidence in cases which the police have failed to investigate and solve.

A senior lawyer, Janatha Perera, describes torture as a routinely used method by the police whose sole approach investigations into crime is to illicit information by beating people up. Torture is the language of investigation in Sri Lanka.

A retired Superintendant of Police describes the loss of discipline within the policing system and the popular disillusionment with the police. He describes how the peoples' distrust of the policing system is so widespread.

Basil Fernando of the Asian Human Rights Commission explains torture as a product of a policing system that is sick and calls for radical reforms of the system.

The cases on which this documentary is based have been from the archives of the Asian Human Rights Commission which has extensively researched and published on police torture in Sri Lanka for the past 15 years.

The documentary may be seen here: SRI LANKA: The Police Torture Epidemic in Sri Lanka

For detailed reports on torture also see SRI LANKA: Cases of torture and ill treatment recorded from 2006-2010 and the Special Compilation: Torture & Ill-treatment in Sri Lanka

About AHRC: The Asian Human Rights Commission is a regional non-governmental organisation that monitors human rights in Asia, documents violations and advocates for justice and institutional reform to ensure the protection and promotion of these rights. The Hong Kong-based group was founded in 1984.

Visit our new website with more features at


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Werewolf: America, The Gated

How, in a global metropolis like New York, do you write about immigration as a problem to be solved? And yet immigration is a hot button issue among those fighting to break away from the unruly clump of starters in the race for Republican nominee. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: US Bomb Strikes Hospital In Kunduz

According to US military sources, “there may have been collateral damage” to the medical facility. “This incident is under investigation.” A statement issued by the office of the President Ashraf Ghani said that Army General John Campbell, chief of US-led forces in Afghanistan, apologised. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: The Fall Of Tony Abbott

The question was one of timing. The Coalition had been registering losses in poll after poll. The Abbott style hardly improved after a spill was forced on the party. Despite claiming that he would be ushering in a spring clean, he continued bypassing ministers and MPs... More>>



Pacific.Scoop: Smaller Pacific States Call For Coal Moratorium

PNG Loop: Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States have called on all nations – especially the advanced economies in the region – to rise to the challenge of climate change. They want to steer the world on a path where climate change is no longer a threat to earth. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news