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The diary of terror - 29th of January 2010

"Wimal Weerawamsa , a government mouth piece , called on the president to arrest Retired General Fonseka. Chief of General staff of armed forced was removed and replace with another officer, said to be more loyal to the president."
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Sri Lanka Human Rights Watch

(January 30, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Pregeeth Ekenaliyagoda, a senior journalist, political analyst and visual designer, attached to Lanka E-News, was abducted on the 24th of January and remains missing. His family and several media groups in Sri Lanka, as well as international media organizations have published the disappearance and requested inquiries. However, no credible inquiry has been undertaken by the government. The wife of the missing journalist made a complaint to the United Nations working group on disappearances yesterday through the Asian Human Rights Commission based in Hong Kong.

Given the repression unleashed on Lanka E-News, the general intimidation carried on against media and journalists in Sri Lanka, the previous abduction of Mr. Ekanaliyagoda in September 2009, it is strongly believed that the government itself is behind the abduction. Media organizations and human rights organizations continue to call for investigations and security for the missing journalist and his family. Further, the government policy of repressing journalists continues to be condemned.

The editor of Sunday Lanka newspaper, Chadana Sirimalwatha was arrested by the CID yesterday and is being detained. No specific charges have been revealed. A government spokesman, Minister Rajitha Senarathne, when questioned by the BBC Sinhala service stated that the arrest is related to investigations into certain statements published by the newspaper during the presidential election campaign. This newspaper belongs to the JVP, which was a partner organization in the joint opposition during the presidential election. The leader of the JVP has publicly complained that the Secretary of the Ministry of Defense has threatened him with assassination and also threatened to burn down his newspaper. This arrest, detention and threats on the newspaper are also seen as part of the repression of media, as well as of those who were part of the joint opposition during the election. The attack on the members of the joint opposition is partly seen as political revenge and also as part of a design to silence opponents in the forthcoming parliamentary elections, which were announced yesterday. The elections are officially due to be held before April this year, as the time period of the present parliament expires then.

An Unknown group of persons entered the premises of E News and when they left they have locked the gates of the premises. A complaint about this has been made to the Wedikada police.On the 29th yet another unknown group have parked three wheelers around the premises. One of the three wheelers bears no 213450..The editor of Enews have received 40 telephone calls on 29th night, threatening him with death.

Opposition candidate Sarath Fonseka’s election campaign premises were surrounded by over 200 STF officers . Office was searched and documents removed. A government spokesman, Minister Rajitha Senaratne, when questioned by the BBC Sinhala service stated that he was unable to tell reasons for the search but thought it may be due allegations of a plot to kill president. Fonseka complained that his security persons were reduced to four police officers and that his life has been exposed to threats.

Wimal Weerawamsa , a government mouth piece , called on the president to arrest Retired General Fonseka. Chief of General staff of armed forced was removed and replace with another officer, said to be more loyal to the president.

UNP spokesman told media that they rejected the election result and a massive computer fraud has in fact taken place. Opposition leader questioned as what has happened to the election commissioner.

State media continued to carry on a provocative campaign against opposition.

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