Prisoners protest in Jaffna
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 17 May 2006, 10:54 GMT]
The remand prisoners of the Jaffna prison located on the Jaffna Main street embarked in a protest demonstration within the prison demanding their cases be taken to trial without delay, and against the lack of basic necessities, from Wednesday morning , said prison sources. Police and Sri Lanka Army (SLA) troops, deployed in large numbers, blocked traffic on all the streets around the prison and searched passers by, said the sources.
The prisoners refused to comply with prison instructions as part of their protest, sources said.
The prisoners, many of them suspects waiting to appear on trial, kept in the jail for long periods, are joined in support by the inmates of the prison and newly remanded suspects, added the sources.
A team of officials from the Sri Lanka Human Rights Commission (SLHRC) Jaffna branch visited the prison to investigate the complaints of the protesting prisoners and to defuse the tensed situation inside the Jaffna prison, said legal sources in Jaffna.
Imprisoning many on suspicion alone and with insufficient evidence for very long periods denying them trials and deliberately dragging legal procedure are the reasons for the prisoners' protest, added the legal sources.