US condemns attack on British Embassy officer, SLPI Director

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 01 July 2008, 13:46 GMT]
The United States Embassy in Colombo on Tuesday condemned the attack on a staff member of British High Commission and a director of the Sri Lankan Press Institute (SLPI) on Monday in the heart of Colombo. The attack on Media Director of the SLPI Namal Perera and the British Embassy officer Mahendra Ratnaweera was carried out at Narahenpitya in Colombo near the Sri Lankan Department of Information by a group of attackers, who came in a white van Monday evening. The attack came a few days after a government paper alleged that the SLPI had sent members connected to LTTE to a course in Denmark under Journalist label.

Last Thursday, the Free Media Movement (FMM), a Colombo based media watchdog, had expressed serious concern against a false story planted in the Sri Lankan state controlled newspaper, 'Dinamina'. "This allegation coming form a state media today is equal to unofficial death sentence passed on those journalists. FMM holds government and the news paper responsible for the dangerous situation that has been created for these journalists by this story who ever planted it," the FMM had noted.

Also, the British High Commissioner Peter Hayes, who visited the officials at the hospital condemned the attack on them as a ‘despicable act’.

Full text of the press release issued by the U.S. Embassy in Colombo follows:

U.S. Condemns Attack on British High Commission and Sri Lanka Press Institute Staff Members

Colombo, July 1, 2008: The United States condemns the brutal and unprovoked attack on a member of the British High Commission staff and an official of the Sri Lankan Press Institute on June 30. We call on the authorities to bring the perpetrators of this crime swiftly to justice.

We are deeply concerned by a series of recent incidents involving members of the Sri Lankan media. A press that is free of intimidation is an essential component of any democracy. We note the recent formation of a ministerial committee to ensure the independence of the media, inquire into complaints of harassment and death threats against media personnel and intervene where warranted, and hope this leads to a more conducive environment for the practice of journalism in Sri Lanka.


Chronology:

 

Latest 15 Reports
24.09.16 16:10   Photo
15,000 Tamils attend historic uprising in Jaffna, reject Unitary Constitution, ITAK draws flak
23.09.16 23:35  
Tamil POWs denounce Colombo's latest announcement, continue fast
22.09.16 22:26  
Mobilisation towards ‘Ezhuka Thamizh’ uprising in Jaffna gains momentum
21.09.16 18:56  
Sinhala colonists step up assaults on Tamil cattle herders in Batticaloa
20.09.16 22:55  
‘Reconciliation prospects’ look as grim as ever: Rev Fr Mangalarajah
19.09.16 23:02  
Tamil POWs relaunch hunger-strike, urge cases to be heard at Jaffna, Vavuniyaa
18.09.16 19:42  
Colombo deploys discrimination in housing assistance to Peasaalai war-affected families
17.09.16 22:18  
SL Intelligence sabotages NPC-organised medical inspections on ex-LTTE members
16.09.16 23:16   Photo
Catholic Peace Mission in Jaffna challenges Colombo’s propaganda on ‘reconciliation’
15.09.16 22:06   Photo
Maharaja TV promotes genocidal military culture through ‘welfare’ projects in North-East
14.09.16 23:42   Photo
Sinhala colonists advance 3 km further into Batticaloa, erect 2nd Buddhist temple in 1 year
13.09.16 17:19  
Sirisena's Forest Department escalates appropriations of lands from Tamils in Vanni
12.09.16 07:12  
Colombo's desecration of Tamil Heroes Cemetery comes to light as SLA vacates Kanakapuram
11.09.16 23:46  
Lawyers demand UN action into allegations of Colombo deploying chemical substances on POWs
10.09.16 09:20  
Colombo’s Fishing Ministry accelerates structural genocide with EU ‘certificate’
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=26213