For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya
The Free Media Movement led group includes number of media organisations as well as few human rights activists. According to FFM convenor Sunil Jayasekara they expect to hold a peaceful demonstration in Jaffna city tomorrow ( 16th) noon together with journalists form Jaffna. The group intend to share experience with journalist community in Jaffna on how to secure press freedom in whole of Sri Lanka. The group will also visit news editor, Mr Gnanasundaram Kuganathanhas of Uthayan daily in Jaffna hospital, who is recovering form fatal assault on him by unidentified gang on 29th July. The journalists will jointly demand that culprits of this heinous crime should be brought to book immediately and all assaults on media and journalists in Jaffna should be investigated in an open and transparent manner . Journalists in Jaffna experienced the worst crimes of media suppression during the war and all such incidents have been covered up by authorities on various pretexts.
Another FMM ex-co member Udaya Kalupathirana told NfR that this is a historic occasion in strengthening solidarity and enhancing mutual understanding between journalists working in Jaffna and Colombo and they hope that their right to protest and association will be respected by the state security forces in Jaffna. Jaffna has not seen any such demonstrations for a long time and if the demonstration will be able go ahead planned it will defiantly expand the democratic space in Northern peninsula.
NfR expresses its solidarity with this democratic action and expect the government to respect the right to peaceful protest of people in Sri Lanka.
NfR steering committee