Early international involvement in massacre inquiry urged

[TamilNet, Thursday, 02 November 2000, 16:46 GMT]
The Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) has told the Minister of Justice that it is only the very early active involvement of neutral independent international investigators that can ensure a credible investigative process into the Bandarawela-Bindunuwewa massacre.

In a letter to Mr.Batty Weerakone, Minister of Justice, TULF's Secretary General Mr.R.Sampanthan said justice must not only be done, it must also appear to be done. In the Bandarawela massacre investigations, many people fear that justice will not be done, and there will be a cover-up, he said. Certain events that have taken place such as the arrest, and the effort to implicate a large number of villagers justify such thinking, he added.

The investigators thus far being handled only by the Police, some members of whom are suspects, raises legitimate doubts in the minds of the people, in regard to the impartiality of the role of the Police said the TULF General Secretary.

He further said that given the pathetic past experiences in cases in which Tamils have been victims, it cannot be said that the fears of such people is not well founded.

"I repeat that, it is only the very early active involvement of neutral independent international investigators, that can infuse the criminal investigative process with an acceptable degree of credibility, " said Mr.Sampanthan in his letter.

Mr.Sampanthan has raised several questions regarding the safety of the surviving detainees in the Bandarawela massacre.

Mr.Sampanthan said that the surviving detainees who could be prime witnesses still continue to be in the custody of the security forces, and that it would appear that some members of the security forces are being held for further investigation.

"Would not the surviving detainees continuing in such custody, be inimical to the surviving detainees being able to testify independently and without fear, he asked. Is it not absolutely necessary that the surviving detainees should no longer be in the custody of the security forces, if the surviving detainees are to testify independently and without fear? It is the duty of the Government to ensure this", he stated.

"The statements of the surviving detainees not being correctly recorded or being distorted could derail the whole investigative process. The surviving detainees should at all times have the benefit of legal assistance. There are non-governmental organizations (NGO) willing to make such assistance available. The government should issue necessary instructions to ensure this. The effective involvement of a representative of the Attorney Genera's department could do some extent be a safeguard. The Government should take the necessary steps in this regard", said Mr.Sampanthan.

Mr.Sampanthan has forwarded a copy of this letter to the President of Sri Lanka for necessary action.

 

Latest 15 Reports
21.05.20 15:56   Photo
TYO-UK pushes back on British Foreign Secretary's May 18 tweet
20.05.20 22:09  
SL TID interrogates outspoken Tamil activist VS Sivakaran in Mannaar
19.05.20 16:23   Photo
IBC's sister-media Gagana used to threaten Tamil villagers in Trinco on 18 May Remembrance
19.05.20 07:42   Photo
Eezham Tamil and Muslim solidarity non-negotiable in true spirit of Mu'l'livaaykkaal
18.05.20 23:20   Photo
Occupying SL military desecrates Remembrance Day candles, harasses Tamil politicians
18.05.20 07:11   Photo
Remembrance event urges Tamils to own justice project, establish genocidal intent of Sinhala state
17.05.20 05:18   Photo
Break paradigm that regards Tamils as victims to achieve equitable solution: Balakumaran in 2004
16.05.20 16:54   Photo
The Guardian succumbs to pressure from SL High Commission on indigenous term Eelam
15.05.20 12:26   Photo
SL Army fires at Tamil youth in Point Pedro, Jaffna
14.05.20 21:28   Photo
IC deceived Tamils on genocide investigation: Students of Faculty of Art at Jaffna University
13.05.20 22:55   Photo
Remembrance of Tamil Genocide and Resistance commences in occupied Tamil Eelam
12.05.20 23:03  
India neither ‘balancer’ or ‘challenger’ to China in Indo-Pacific: Aussie think-tank
11.05.20 20:25  
Outspoken CCP called back from North, former commander appointed as top health bureaucrat
10.05.20 21:24  
Mannaar fishers confront off-season right after Pandemic curfew ravaging their livelihood: Alam
09.05.20 11:31   Photo
Occupying Sinhala soldiers mete out revenge assaults against Tamil families in Jaffna, Vanni
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=5549