2nd Lead (Adds details)

RSF slams Colombo’s ‘lack of will’ on journalists’ murder

[TamilNet, Monday, 16 May 2005, 13:48 GMT]
Reporters Sans Frontieres (RSF) has written to participants at the Sri Lankan Development Forum (SLDF) meeting in Kandy urging them to put pressure on the Sri Lankan government to conduct a serious investigation into the 29 April murder of Tamil journalist Dharmeratnam Sivaram (Taraki).

“The Sri Lankan authorities have regrettably demonstrated a complete lack of will to solve cases of murders and physical attacks against journalists,” the press freedom organization said in its letter.

The letter was sent to the representatives of the World Bank and several countries participating in the conference, the RSF said in a statement.

“Those who instigated and perpetrated the murders of journalists Mayilvaganam Nimalarajan, Aiyathurai Nadesan, Rohana Kumara, Nadarajah Atputharajah and Anthony Mariyanayagam during the past four years have never been brought to trial, and we call on you to publicly condemn this culture of impunity,” the letter said, in reference to murdered journalists.

“While recognizing the importance of the forum’s main subject, namely post-tsunami reconstruction and development strategies, the agenda should also include press freedom, which is repeatedly violated in Sri Lanka,” RSF said.

Mr. Sivaram was kidnapped at around 10:30 p.m. on 28 April and was found dead the next day. He had been shot several times in the head. “Sivaram was known for his uncompromising coverage of the political and military situation, particularly since the emergence of a pro-government Tamil militia headed by Col. Karuna,” RSF said.

Meanwhile, Tamil and Sinhala journalists and trade union activists Monday echoed RSF's sentiments in a demonstration outside a key aid conference in Kandy, where hundreds of delegates from donor countries and agencies were meeting in the first of two days of deliberations on providing post-tsunami reconstruction funds to Sri Lanka’s cash-strapped government.

Meanwhile, Tamil and Sinhala journalists and trade union activists Monday echoed RSF's sentiments in a demonstration outside a key aid conference in Kandy, where hundreds of delegates from donor countries and agencies were meeting in the first of two days of deliberations on providing post-tsunami reconstruction funds to Sri Lanka’s cash-strapped government.

RSF Demo

 

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