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


Sri Lanka: Amnesty Condemns Mass Arrests

Sri Lanka: Amnesty International condemns mass arrests

Amnesty International condemns the mass arrests of more than 1000 Tamils by the Sri Lankan police, allegedly in response to the suicide bombings carried out in Colombo on 28 November 2007, for which the government has blamed the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

Amnesty International is deeply concerned that the arrests have been made on arbitrary and discriminatory grounds using sweeping powers granted by the emergency regulations. Those arrested may be detained in inhumane conditions; denied access to lawyers, courts and family members; and face the risk of torture, other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and prolonged arbitrary detention.

According to reports, "Tamils were bundled in bus loads and taken for interrogation". More than 400 of those arrested, including 50 women, have been taken to the Boosa Camp near Galle in the south, a facility that is reportedly overcrowded, lacking proper sanitation facilities and adequate drinking water.

While the government has the right to carry out security measures it must never do this in violation of basic rights. Detainees are reportedly being held 'on suspicion' under the Emergency Regulations, and no formal charges have been pressed against any of them. Lawyers have told Amnesty about the lack of clarity surrounding the types of detention orders people are held under. This contradicts a July 2006 Presidential Directive under which the Sri Lankan Human Rights Commission (SLHRC) must be informed of any arrest and of the place of detention within 48 hours, and families must be allowed to communicate with detainees.

Amnesty International reminds the Sri Lankan authorities that any arrest and/or detention must be in strict compliance with its obligations under international human rights law, and in particular the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Sri Lanka is a state party.

The Sri Lanka authorities must:

* Immediately release those arrested, unless they are charged with recognizably criminal offences and remanded in custody by a civilian court;

* repeal or revise the Emergency Regulations so as to bring them into line with international human rights law and standards;

* adhere to the Sri Lankan President's Directive on the registering of detainees and informing their families and the SLHRC of the place of arrest.


More: Latest World News | Top World News | World Digest | Archives

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Save The Children: World Leaders Urged To Halt Escalating Hunger Crisis

A group of 120 non-governmental organisations has joined forces in an open letter calling on world leaders to do more to halt a devastating global hunger crisis as new analysis shows the number of people likely to be in need of humanitarian aid in 2022 could rise by 17%...More>>

WMO: Another La Niña Impacts Temperatures And Precipitation – But Not Climate Change
La Niña has developed for the second consecutive year and is expected to last into early 2022, influencing temperatures and precipitation. Despite the cooling influence of this naturally occurring climate phenomenon, temperatures in many parts of the world are expected to be above average because of the accumulated heat trapped in the atmosphere...

UN: Violations Of Palestinian Rights Puts Two-State Solution At Risk, Chief Warns
The situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, continues to pose a significant challenge to international peace and security, United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, said on Monday... More>>

World Food Programme: Millions More In Need Of Food Assistance As A Direct Result Of Conflict In Northern Ethiopia

The number of people in need of humanitarian food assistance across northern Ethiopia has grown to an estimated 9.4 million as a direct result of ongoing conflict, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced today... More>>

Food: Three Billion People Cannot Afford A Healthy Diet

Approximately three billion people, almost 40 per cent of the world’s population, cannot afford a healthy diet and another one billion people would join their ranks should further unpredictable events reduce incomes by one-third, the UN food agency said, launching a new report on Tuesday... More>>

COP26: Enough Of ‘Treating Nature Like A Toilet’ – Guterres Brings Stark Call For Climate Action To Glasgow
As the World Leaders Summit opened on day two of COP26, UN chief António Guterres sent a stark message to the international community. “We are digging our own graves”, he said, referring to the addiction to fossil fuels which threatens to push humanity and the planet, to the brink, through unsustainable global heating... More>>

  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC