Sri Lankan activists, lawmakers want justice for journalists

A group of people, mainly rights activists, lawmakers and relatives of slain and disappeared journalists in Sri Lanka, conducted a vigil over their abductions and killings and urged the government to expedite investigations. According to Freddie Gamage, an organizer of the vigil, despite being in power for four years, the current government has miserably failed to fulfil its promise to punish those responsible for attacks on journalists.

Stating that 44 journalists and media workers were killed between 2006 and 2015, Gamage said investigations have been launched only into two or three cases, but so far those probes too have not been concluded and culprits have not been punished." The activist added: All the other cases of attacks on journalists have been totally neglected by the authorities." Lawmaker and government minister Ajith Perera lamented about the slow-progress of the investigations on attacks on journalists. "None of those responsible for attacks on media have been punished. The government should be ashamed," he said.

Meanwhile, Sandya Ekneligoda, the wife of abducted journalist Prageeth Ekneligoda, staged a sit-in protest in front of the president's office, demanding his administration bring to justice the perpetrators responsible for her husband's disappearance nine years ago on January 24. Prageeth was kidnapped two days before the 2010 presidential election in which he supported Mahinda Rajapaksa's rival.