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EU joins criticism of jailing of Sri Lanka journalist

03 September 2009, 16:52 CET
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(BRUSSELS) - The European Union joined Thursday the international outcry over the sentencing to 20 years in jail of a journalist in Sri Lanka for his alleged links to Tamil Tiger rebels.

"The European Union is troubled by the severe sentence of 20 years hard labour in prison passed by the Colombo High Court on journalist Mr J.S. Tissainayagam," the EU's Swedish presidency said in a statement.

"The verdict and the disproportionate sentence against Mr Tissainayagam give rise to concern with respect to freedom of expression and freedom of the press in Sri Lanka," it said.

"The EU is concerned by continuing serious shortcomings with regard to freedom of expression in Sri Lanka," the presidency said, and expressed concern about the journalist's health.

Tissainayagam, 45, who contributed to the local Sunday Times and ran a news website, was found guilty on Monday under the Prevention of Terrorism Act.

He was convicted of receiving money from the Tamil Tigers to fund his work and causing racial hatred through his writings about Tamils affected by the ethnic conflict.

The foreign ministry in Colombo has rejected international criticism of the verdict, which has also come from the United States and media rights groups, as an attempt at "undermining the independence of the judiciary of Sri Lanka."


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Sri Lankan Abuses and Long Silence of EU

Posted by Sandy Vadi at 03 September 2009, 19:05 CET
Sri Lanka under the current president has committed all sorts of abuses to its minority, which has been persecuted in the country since 1948.
Media blackout, denial to entry by peace activists, aid groups and foreign dignatories, intimidation, starvation, military slaughter with heavy and lethal weapons on civilians, oppression to press and judiciary system, conduct of elections.

To top it all lies and deceptions.
Assignment of consulting firms abroad to hoodwink Senators and parliamentarians.

Long silence of international community, including EU has created a monster in a strategic region.

The high profile which is holding 67% of the national wealth is playing racism card for the persecution of tamil minority.
  

Free Children

Posted by Syd Pillon at 03 September 2009, 21:41 CET
Tamils in the island have been persecuted now for several years.
The International community which has started questioning their own silence over atrocities and fundamental human rights violations should come together in punishing the State terrorists by tangible physical interventions and world court trials and in freeing the Tamils who were longing for decades to obtain freedom and self rule to pursue the simple purpose of life.

EU criticism...

Posted by Ranasinghe at 04 September 2009, 07:16 CET
Tissainayagam is a LTTE terrorist disguised as a journalist.He works for the LTTE. He was lavishly funded by the LTTE for his writing against the Srilankan government.Already, the Government of Srilanka has forwarded a copy of court's ruling to th European Commission to Scrutinize.

Nobody can comment court ruling. But,anybody can appeal against it.Please follow formal procedures with out interfering with the Srilankan judiciary.

Sri lankan s aim is silencing Tamils

Posted by Thiya tharis at 04 September 2009, 08:12 CET
Karuna , an "ex- terrorist" , who propabaly killed many people in Sri lanka is given an MP position by the Rajapakse regime- but a journalist , intellectual tamil man is given 20 years jail for expressing his views. This shows the duplicity of the Sri lankan liar regime. Which has only one aim is silencing and destroying tamil identity from Srilanka.
EU which jeoporized the peace talks by banning the LTTE durring peace talks by a decision made without any consultation with tamils, now should show its commitment to the peace and democracy by putting in place very serious economic sanctions against Sri lanka and travel ban on its war criminal leaders...

European Union and International community

Posted by Pera at 04 September 2009, 13:59 CET
The international community including EU asked LTTE to release the Vanni people when the Shingala military was slaughtering Tamils during the time of war. Now you see how they have been treating in the military Nazi type camps by Shingala leadership.
The judgment was given to the journalist by all from majority Shingala people. You can’t expect a genuine justice from Shingala majority for Tamil minority. People know, the Shingala judicial system is corrupted and working under the command of the War criminals of Rajapakse brothers.
At least now the international community should realize the situation of Sri Lanka and take the necessary action against the brutal and racist regime.

Tissainayagam is not a journalist

Posted by Gordon Richens at 04 September 2009, 16:18 CET
“The European Union joined Thursday the international outcry over the sentencing to 20 years in jail of a journalist in Sri Lanka for his alleged links to Tamil Tiger rebels.”

It’s funny how, on one hand AFP maintains that Tissainayagam’s links to the LTTE are “alleged” in spite of being proven in a court of law, while uncritically referring to that terrorist lackey as a “journalist”.

It seems that all one needs to do to be called a journalist nowadays is to write puff-pieces for pay on behalf of an internationally-recognized terrorist group. Your article makes no mention that Tissainayagam portrayed the Oxford-educated Tamil politician Lakshman Kadirgamar as a traitor after his murder by the LTTE in 2005 (“De Constructing Lakshman Kadirgamar” http://www.tamilnation.org/[…]/050901kadirgamar.htm). Kadirgamar was Sri Lanka’s foreign minister at the time he was killed.

How ironic that a Tamil holding a senior cabinet position in a government that the EU delights in criticizing is killed by the LTTE. Yet the EU acknowledges nothing about its role in allowing the financing of hundreds of millions of ordnance to Kadirgamar’s killers in the LTTE, much less that at least some of the funding to pay Tissainayagam came from European supporters.

Since so many so-called “journalism” groups are falling over each other to heap their dubious honours on that terrorist lackey, why doesn’t the EU come up with a shame tribute of its own? They could call it: “The Walter Duranty/Leni Riefenstahl Award for Integrity in Journalism”. It pretty much sums up the standard that they uphold.

Sri Lankan Impunity

Posted by Jaya Suriya at 04 September 2009, 19:15 CET

Three more journalists are arrested today.

Shalike Wimalasena, a member of the Lanka Irida editorial board, Daya Neththasinghe, a reporter and Ravindra Pushpakumara, a press photographer, were arrested while visiting Deniyaya to prepare an article on the conduct of the Rajapakse ruling party in the Southern Provincial Council Election.

One journalist wrote in the Daily Mirror of Sri Lanka "We can do a lot more, if the media can listen to Gotabaya Rajapaksa."

Both JS Tissainayagam and Lasantha Wicrematunge wrote against LTTE. But, Lasantha exposed the clandestine chemical weapons deal and was murdered in point blank.


More journalist have been killed in Sri Lanka than in China.
No surprise what is happening to the tamil minority since 1948.


-Upul Jayasuriya, a journalist in exile.




Sri Lankan Impunity

Posted by Jaya Suriya at 04 September 2009, 19:16 CET
Three more journalists are arrested today.

Shalike Wimalasena, a member of the Lanka Irida editorial board, Daya Neththasinghe, a reporter and Ravindra Pushpakumara, a press photographer, were arrested while visiting Deniyaya to prepare an article on the conduct of the Rajapakse ruling party in the Southern Provincial Council Election.

One journalist wrote in the Daily Mirror of Sri Lanka "We can do a lot more, if the media can listen to Gotabaya Rajapaksa."

Both JS Tissainayagam and Lasantha Wicrematunge wrote against LTTE. But, Lasantha exposed the clandestine chemical weapons deal and was murdered in point blank.


More journalists have been killed in Sri Lanka than in China.
No surprise what is happening to the tamil minority since 1948.


-Upul Jayasuriya, a journalist in exile.

Sri Lankan Impunity- Correction

Posted by B Weerakoon at 04 September 2009, 19:45 CET
Upul,
The journalist were arrested not related to elections.
President Mahinda Rajapakse, who is referred to as “Maharaja” by his aides, is currently building a palace in Deniyaya in the Matara District.

The secret palace came into light following the arrest of three journalists attached to the Lanka newspaper.
The palace is being built in close proximity to the estate belonging to his sister Gandhini in Deniyaya. The architect of the palace located in the picturesque area of Bevaraliya is Channa Daswatte.

The area residents were not privy to the owner of the palace that was being built using Maga Neguma and other vehicles belonging to state institutions. Residents were also suspicious due to the heavy security placed in.
 
 
  the area surrounding the construction.

The Lanka journalists were arrested when they tried to investigate into the massive house that was being built with state sponsorship on the sidelines of the Southern Provincial Council elections. They were arrested for allegedly entering into a private land without approval.