FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION SRI LANKA

For press freedom by Sunanda Deshapriya

Black July commemoration: Jaffna police won’t allow display of inflammatory posters

The police in the Northern Province are on alert to thwart possible attempts by political elements to destabilize the region with intelligence received that some politically motivated groups were working overtime to exploit Black July remembrance events to incite Tamil speaking people.
The police warning was given close on the heels of the Nelliady police detecting a group of people led by former TNA MP Sivajilingam pasting posters condemning the killings at Welikada prison on July 25th and July 27th.
“We made the detection on Thursday night. Although we didn’t take anyone into custody, officers seized a stock of posters,” a senior official said.

When pointed out that the police had been accused of unnecessarily interfering in political activity, the official alleged that the right of the Opposition to engage in dissenting political campaign couldn’t be challenged.

But the police couldn’t allow those bent on destabilizing the country to exploit Black July remembrance events to incite people, the official said.

The police said that Nelliady detection was made ahead of commemorative events to mark the deaths of 52 Tamils held at Welikada during disturbances in July 1983. Of them, 35 were killed by Sinhala inmates on July 25 and the rest on July 27.

Sources said that Jaffna police wouldn’t allow troublemakers to display inflammatory posters. They pointed out that none of those demanding justice for terror suspects were yet to condemn killings carried out by the LTTE.
By Shamindra Ferdinando
IS

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