FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION SRI LANKA

For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya

US concerned over blocking of anti-government website in Sri Lanka

Colombo – The US government Tuesday expressed concern over the blocking of anti-government websites in Sri Lanka.

The US Embassy in Colombo called on Sri Lankan authorities and the managements of Sri Lankan telecommunications firms to stop activities aimed at blocking free access in Sri Lanka to all legitimate media websites.

The statement came after the anti-government Lanka-e-News website was blocked.

‘While the embassy does not endorse the views of any particular media outlet, the United States believes that a free and independent media is vital to ensuring the health and continuation of any democracy’, the embassy said.

‘Freedom of expression, including unfettered access to Internet news websites, is a basic right which must be respected’, the statement added.

The Tamilnet website, which was previously a pro-Tamil rebel website, has been blocked for the past two and half years.
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