Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/562/6774

From The Socialist newspaper, 14 January 2009

Sri Lanka: Vicious attacks on media and killing of newspaper editor

Protests and solidarity action needed

ON 8 January, in broad daylight in Colombo, the prominent and respected editor of the Sunday Leader, Lasantha Wickrematunge, was hit in the head by gunfire through his windscreen as his vehicle was stationary in traffic. He died in hospital three hours later. No-one was apprehended or has been found and held for this heinous crime.

Three days before this, the premises of a TV station that has given some objective reporting of recent carnage and human suffering in the war between the right-wing government and the Tamil Tigers separatists, was raided and wrecked.

Thugs held staff captive while all the vital equipment was destroyed. Even though the attack lasted a full half an hour, the perpetrators got away from the premises without hindrance.

These violent attacks, undoubtedly with government collusion, have been aimed at silencing any media which is critical of the Rajapakse government, especially over the war which is still raging. One British newspaper has spoken of casualties "on the scale of Gaza".

Clampdown

The president himself, Mahinda Rajapakse, has taken on the portfolio of media minister to clamp down on objective, critical reporting. Now his rotten, war-mongering government has adopted the most extreme measures to prevent people like Lasantha from exposing the corrupt practices of himself and his clan. (At present there are four Rajapakse brothers in the government!)

Amnesty International reported last November on the killing of at least ten media employees since 2006. There have been frequent protests by journalists and other media personnel against their persecution. Lasantha even suggested more journalists than opposition politicians were being killed by the regime because the party leaders had not been raising their voices.

Roland Buerk of the BBC says: "The government has been accused of encouraging the violence, by branding reporters as critical rebel-sympathisers and enemies of the state".

Sri Lankan trade union and opposition leaders held a public protest on 9 January and are calling for world-wide condemnation of this latest brutal killing.

The International Federation of Journalists and Reporters Without Borders have taken up the issue but stronger action is needed.

Over 10,000 mourners attended the funeral of Lasantha Wickrematunge on Monday 12 January.

The Civil Monitoring Committee, a body which has exposed hundreds of cases of cover-ups in relation to extra-judicial kidnappings and killings in Sri Lanka, is calling for messages of condemnation to be sent to the Sri Lankan government and demands to be made for an independent inquiry.

They are also calling for loud protests to be made outside Sri Lankan embassies worldwide. The day proposed is on14 January.

The United Socialist Party (CWI, Sri Lanka) is at the forefront of protests and campaigns against the war, for press freedom, for the right of self-determination of the Tamil-speaking people and for an end to the present Sinhala chauvinist and dictatorial government. It has consistently campaigned for a united struggle of Sinhala and Tamil workers and poor people against imperialism and capitalism, with socialist policies.

In doing so, the lives and freedom of its members and supporters are, at present, constantly in danger. Any financial support to help with their defence and with the campaigning work of the party is very welcome. Donations can be made to Campaign Sri Lanka.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 14 January 2009:


War and occupation

Stop the Israeli state terror

100,000+ on Gaza protests


Socialist Party editorial

British economy heads deeper into crisis


Vote for Robbie Segal

Stop job cuts


Socialist Party youth and students

Fight for your future

Fight for free education

Building ISR and Socialist Students in 2009

Fight for your future: what ISR campaigns for


Socialist Party campaigns

The 2012 Olympics legacy

Heathrow expansion protest

Defend threatened Saudi Arabian trade unionist

Wirral: Marching to stop the cuts

Fast News


Socialist Party feature

The NHS today - can it meet everyone's health needs?


Socialist Party workplace news

Conference: 'The crisis in working class political representation'

GlaxoSmithKline: The fightback starts here

Tube cleaners protest against victimisation

Job cuts announced at Nissan


International socialist news and analysis

Jobs meltdown hits Ireland

Debate and meeting in Dublin

Sri Lanka -: Vicious attacks on media and killing of newspaper editor

Bangladesh: Protesters denounce global mining corporation


Socialist Party review

Che


Socialist Party feature

Why Manchester rejected the congestion charge


 

Home   |   The Socialist 14 January 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

Sri Lanka:

triangleBuilding a working-class movement for Tamil rights

triangleSri Lanka: Presidential election sees return of dictatorial Rajapaksa clan

triangleKashmir crisis: Stop the attack on democratic rights

triangleTamil Solidarity Day: Linking up oppressed people's struggles

triangleIndia: Modi victory underlines need for real socialist fightback

War:

triangleYemen's desperate civil war fuelled by imperialism and regional powers

triangleLibya: Civil war and chaos follow interventions by world and regional powers

triangleIraq - a brutal legacy of imperialist intervention

triangleLondon: Protesters return to oppose Middle East war

Journalists:

triangle500 BBC journalists' jobs under threat

triangleNorthern Ireland: killing of Lyra McKee

triangleWorldwide threat to journalists at worst for ten years

International

International

18/3/20

France

French local elections: CWI candidate elected

18/3/20

Coronavirus

United States: private healthcare exposed as Trump throws money at markets

18/3/20

Coronavirus

'Health not profit' strike wave sweeps Italy

11/3/20

US

How can Trump be ousted from the White House?

11/3/20

Italy

Italy on lockdown: lack of resources and democracy causes panic

11/3/20

Greece

Greece-Turkey border refugee crisis

11/3/20

South Korea

South Korea shows capitalism has money to respond to coronavirus

4/3/20

Women

A legacy of women workers and the class struggle

4/3/20

India

India: Bloody pogrom fuelled by Modi's sectarianism

26/2/20

Germany

Germany: Right-wing terror attacks - fight racism, fight capitalism!

26/2/20

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's strike wave

19/2/20

China

Coronavirus crisis shakes Chinese regime

19/2/20

Yemen

Yemen's desperate civil war fuelled by imperialism and regional powers

12/2/20

Ireland

Sinn Fein harnesses working-class anger to top poll

12/2/20

Lebanon

Lebanon - mass protests cut across sectarian division

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 07748 534 891

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999