2005, a black year for Tamil media journalists in Sri Lanka- SLTMA

[TamilNet, Thursday, 16 March 2006, 18:33 GMT]

The Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance (SLTMA) in its annual report said 2005 was a black year for Tamil media journalists in the country. "We lost three Tamil media persons including Mr.D.Sivaram, a reputed journalist and military analyst," the annual report said. The annual general meeting of the SLTMA was held last Sunday evening at Hotel Ranmuthu in Colpetty in Colombo. Mr.S.Rajkumar was elected President, Mr.R.Barati General re-elected Secretary and Mr.S.Sri Gajan, re-elected Treasurer for the year 2006, sources said.

Excerpts from the annual report follow: -

"The ceasefire agreement now holding in Sri Lanka since February 22, 2002 has not guaranteed the security of Tamil media journalists. In the last year 2005 three Tamil journalists had been brutally killed. Mr.D.Sivaram, a well- known journalist at national and international level and who played a vital role in forming the Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance was brutally murdered. Other two Tamil journalists were Mr.S.Suhirtharajan, Trincomalee correspondent for Sudar Oli, Tamil daily and Mrs. Relanki Selvarajah, Tamil broadcaster.

Jaffna offices of the two Tamil daily newspapers had been subjected to search by the government security forces. Grenade was thrown at the Colombo office of the Sudar Oli. Security forces assaulted journalists in Jaffna district when they were on duty. The attack on Tamil media by government security forces has increased last year. The security forces had taken Tamil journalists in Colombo for interrogation under the Emergency Regulations

The Sri Lanka Tamil Media Alliance joining with other media associations including the Free Media Movement in the country has voiced its serious concern against the suppression and oppression on the Tamil media by the government forces. International media associations have also expressed their solidarity with Sri Lanka Tamil journalists."


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