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Extra judicial executions, murder of detainees and abductions continue with impunity...
"...On the night of 9 January 2001, a masked gang of four abducted student S Muhundan from his home at Pandarikulam. Fellow students staged a demonstration against the abduction. Sources say Tamil groups allied to the (Sri Lanka)Army are responsible for a number of abductions and disappearances. Mr Muhundan was found blindfolded the following night in a rice field. Amnesty International says Suppiah Sivalingam, a refugee from Kilinochchi, was ordered to report at the ‘Sanasa’ Army camp on 14 January before he is issued a permit to stay in Vavuniya. He went to the camp and has not been seen since. Amnesty has expressed concern for his safety.
Tamil detainee Shanmuganathan Nithiyananthan, 27, was murdered on 4 January in Kalutara prison, 25 miles south of Colombo. Prison officers say his mutilated body was found following a clash among detainees. But Tamil MP P Selvarajah expressed suspicion, in light of earlier killings in the prison, and has called for an investigation.
Currently over 800 Tamils are held in Kalutara under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and Emergency regulations, including 630 from north-east Sri Lanka. Detainees complained to a team of the Sri Lankan Human Rights Commission (HRC) visiting Kalutara prison in January, about their treatment, insecurity and conditions in the prison.
They say food provided to them is insufficient and adequate medicines are not available in the prison hospital, particularly for diabetes and heart disease. Relatives from the north-east find it extremely difficult to visit the prison because of restrictions imposed under Emergency regulations. Cases against many of them in the High Courts of Colombo, Kandy and Badulla are usually postponed for long periods, sometimes to nine months. Five youths ordered to be released by the courts are still in custody.
....Karunakaran Anita, 11, and Thillainathan Latha, 23, were injured in a shooting incident in Batticaloa town on 15 January. Local people say a police Special Task Force (STF) patrol fired into their house without any provocation. In late January, the Army shot four civilians who went into jungles in Vaharai in northern Batticaloa. Velayutham Vasanthakumar was killed.
The Human Rights Commission was notified that refugee Sellathamby Anantharajah, 42, was detained by the Army on 20 January. No reasons have been given for the arrest or detention. Mr Anantharajah had been living in Peithalai refugee camp for the last five years with five members of his family...
... The Mannar Citizens Committee says that the Army killed 32 civilians in the district in the year 2000. Over 140 were detained and 12 have disappeared. Some 60 people are still being held in military camps within the district. Hindu priest Athinarayanasarma, his wife Kumudini and a relative were taken into custody on 12 January when they entered the district. The priest had been transferred from Batticaloa District to serve in a temple in Mannar. No reasons have been given for the arrest and detention....
S Dharmakulasingham says in a January letter to President Chandrika that soldiers killed his wife Vigneswary on 2 October at Mirusuvil (in the Jaffna Peninsula). Navy personnel attacked fisherman Kanthasamy Kugarajah in early January while fishing off Velanai, seriously injuring him...
The police arrested Jaffna journalist Nadarasa Thiruchelvam, 48, on the night of 2 January, while in Colombo for a wedding. Mr Thiruchelvam has informed the HRC that he was handcuffed to a chair and confined for 12 days in a room. On 14 January, he was transferred to the sixth floor of the police headquarters, where he was beaten with plastic pipes filled with concrete. His wife was allowed one visit but was not informed of the reasons for the arrest.
Colombo human rights agencies say search operations and Tamil arrests in the city continue. The Centre for Human Rights and Development estimates that 18,000 arrests were made in 2000. The agencies are particularly concerned over arrests in the nights..." (British Refugee Council, Sri Lanka Monitor, January 2001)