Amnesty International’s Representative to the United Nations in Geneva Peter Splinter says that Sri Lanka must put an end to the campaign of intimidation and dirty tactics against outspoken human rights defenders, journalists, lawyers and families of the disappeared
During an informal meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations Human Rights Council Sessions in Geneva Peter Splinter said that while it is positive that the human rights defenders Ruki Fernando and Father Praveen Mahesan have been released, the world must not be fooled.
He adds that the fact remains they should never have been arrested in the first place.
Peter Splinter also says that the Sri Lankan authorities must stop repressing critical voices and ensure the safety of all those who peacefully express inconvenient truths about the country’s post-war human rights situation.
He adds that in a diplomatic note circulated to UN member states’ permanent missions in Geneva on March 18, the Sri Lankan government sought to portray the two as engaging with people who were trying to revive the LTTE armed group in Sri Lanka.
Peter Splinter goes on to say these are preposterous allegations, and they show the lengths to which the Sri Lankan government will go to bury the truth and sully the names of its critics. Using the world stage to smear peaceful rights activists puts Sri Lanka in the company of a small club of repressive authoritarian states.
He highlights that Instead of taking measurable steps towards ensuring justice for the victims of human rights violations, the Government of Sri Lanka continues to wage an aggressive campaign against those advocating for accountability and human rights.