| by our Special Correspondent in Colombo
(October 28, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Investigations by Sri Lanka Guardian have revealed that the Sri Lankan Ministry of Defence is using the ‘White Van Technique’ to intimidate and threaten civilians.
As per Section 2 (1) (a) of Prevention of Terrorism Act 48 of 1979, of Sri Lanka ‘ Any person who causes the death of any specified person, or kidnaps or abducts a specified person, or commits any other attack upon any such person, which act would, under the provisions of the Penal Code, be punishable with death or a term of imprisonment of not less than seven years, shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for life, and
Sections 2 (1) (b) & (c ) state :
(b) ‘Any person who causes the death of any person who is a witness to any offence under this Act, or kidnaps or abducts or commits any other attack upon any such person, which act would, under the provisions of the Penal Code, be punishable with death or a term of imprisonment of not less than seven years, shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for life, and
( c) ‘Any person who commits criminal intimidation of any special person or a witness referred to in paragraph (b) on conviction be liable to imprisonment of either description for a period not less than five years but not exceeding twenty years’
Our revelations would help the Public judge the Defence Ministry through the above Prevention of Terrorism Act, through which they have the power to punish members of the Public.
According to the report that we received from one of the many victims of the ‘white van operations’, such operations are being conducted under the special command of the Ministry of the Defence. “One young man who is working at the Ministry of Social Affairs was questioned by two officers from the Ministry of Defence few days ago,” source from Colombo said.
“The Defence Ministry officers asked the young man many details about him, including the time that he left home, the time he arrived at office and likewise on his return to home. They asked him also details about his work. Then they asked whether the person was involved with any kind of anti- Government work or any social work criticizing the government”, the source added.
The young man was finally released after advice from the Defence Ministry Officer as follows: “Son we cannot do anything as we like. We are doing as our duty, what the Ministry of Defence has ordered us to do so. Don’t do or say anything criticizing the government. If you do, we may have to kill you. If we are ordered to kill you, we have no choice but to kill you. So be careful.”
While they were questioning, that young person had taken a look into the vehicle (white van) that had stopped in front of him. Inside the vehicle, he saw around eight persons seated and operating what looked like sophisticated computer systems using remote control devices. “I thought they may be compiling special data base of people whom they wanted to investigate and control or get rid of” the young person told our source in Colombo.
For security reasons we cannot reveal the identities of persons concerned but there is no doubt in our minds that the Ministry of Defence is still running that killing operation against unarmed people as they have done in the past. Yesterday (October 27) was Disappearance Day and many Sri Lankans painfully remembered their loved ones who were abducted during the past few decades by various parts of the Government with the help of Security forces. Thousands of mysterious disappearances continue to be unaccounted for by the Government, even after the elimination of the Tamil Tigers in May 2009 by the Government Forces with Regional and International help.
The Defence Ministry responsible for upholding the law through Prevention of Terrorism Act, seems to be giving the Public the evidence of actions that are punishable through this legislation. Who is to try them? Or are they above the law due to Political Protection?
|Don’t do or say anything criticizing the government. If you do, we may have to kill you. If we are ordered to kill you, we have no choice but to kill you. So be careful|