The Sri Lankan government should end the targeted arrests, intimidation and threats against the lives and physical security of lawyers, activists, human rights defenders and journalists, 10 international human rights organizations said today
The Sri Lankan government should end the targeted arrests, intimidation and threats against the lives and physical security of lawyers, activists, human rights defenders and journalists, 10 international human rights organizations said today.
The organizations in a statement said a campaign of fear has intensified since the 2019 presidential election, and has cast a shadow over the 2020 parliamentary election campaign.
“The targeting and repression of journalists and human rights defenders is not only an assault on the rights of these individuals, but an attack on the principles of human rights and the rule of law which should protect all Sri Lankans,” the statement signed by 10 organizations said.
It added that lawyers taking on human rights cases have been targeted through legal and administrative processes and have faced smear campaigns in the media.
The organizations called on the Sri Lankan authorities to end all forms of harassment, threats, and abuse of legal processes and police powers against lawyers, human rights defenders and journalists and release Ramzy Razeek and lawyer Hejaaz Hizbullah immediately.
“While the government of Sri Lanka continues to deny Sri Lankans the ability to promote and defend human rights, particularly targeting members of civil society, we call upon the international community, including states and the United Nations, to demand that Sri Lanka live up to its international human rights obligations,” the statement said.
The 10 organizations signed the request to the government included Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Reporters Without Borders, International Commission of Jurists a South Asians for Human Rights among others.