Saturday May 18, 2013
SRI LANKA: Former Soldier Arrested and Arbitrarily DetainedSalem-News.com
Salem-News.com Eye on the World Report.
(SAYDABAD, Bangladesh) - A former Sri Lankan Army soldier who left the military at the urging of his family, is taken by police in a white van, questioned and severely tortured on a regular basis by police for over a year. Enduring being hung from the ceiling, the man was covered with an empty petrol bag and severely beaten. Refused medical treatment, the man was questioned about a Tamil woman that he clearly stated that he had no knowledge of. He says he was also accused of attempting to murder officials. He explained that he had never committed a crime, and categorically denied all the allegations laid against him.
Our goal with Eye on the World is to illustrate and highlight politically oriented problems and tragedies that traditional media channels don't have time or interest in covering.
The world has its own set of laws that were agreed upon by the ruling nations in 1948, and many people are not aware of this simple fact. At the root of the concept of world citizenry itself, is the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, an overriding and supreme law that ensures many essential human rights that governments today fail to observe. Also central to any hope of human success, is the understanding of the human hierarchy of needs, as defined by Abraham Maslow- more information on this at the conclusion of this entry. We must use the Internet as a tool of justice at every junction, and we need to assist all human beings, everywhere, and not allow cultural, racial or religious preferences as determiners.
In this appeal, William Gomes asks the Attorney General, Ms. Eva Wanasundara, at the Attorney General’s Department in Colombo, to investigate allegations of illegal arrest, illegal detention, and police torture, and he urges the Attorney General to prosecute those proven to be responsible under the criminal law of the country for misusing powers of state officers and for wrongful prosecution. He believes the officers involved must also be subjectes of internal investigations for the breach of the department orders.
Re: SRI LANKA: Former soldier arrested and arbitrarily detained
Dear Attorney General of Sri Lanka,
I am writing to express my serious concern over the case of Mr. Saman Sampath Rajapakse (34) of No: A/182/24, Adurapotha, Kegalle. Saman was a soldier attached to the Commando Regiment of the Sri Lanka Army. He was married to Ms. Jayanthi Wickramasinghe with whom he had two daughters. At the request of his family members, Saman resigned from the Army and began work as a self-employed painter.
On 5 February 2008 as Saman was doing his work, he was arrested in Rambukkana by a number of police officers who had arrived in a white van. They claimed to be from Colombo. Saman was brought to the police station in Colombo and then handed over to the Petta Police Station, where he was detained for almost two weeks. The reasons for his arrest and detention were never revealed to him.
Mr. Saman was then handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Sri Lanka by the Petta Police Station on 26 February 2008. As he was being transferred, he was told that he was being detained for further investigations. He was detained for over a year at the CID office in Colombo. During this time, he was questioned and severely tortured on a regular basis. He was hung from the ceiling, covered with an empty petrol bag and severely beaten. He was refused medical treatment. The police officers questioned him about a Tamil woman named Vadani. Saman clearly stated that he had no knowledge of such a woman. He was also accused of attempting to murder Ministers Keheliya Rabukwella and Ranjith Siayabalapitiya; accusations which he denied. He explained that he had never committed a crime, and maintained that to his knowledge, a legal complaint had never been filed against him. Mr. Saman categorically denied all the allegations laid against him. He said that the police officers refused to reveal motives, facts or circumstances surrounding these supposed crimes.
The CID officers forced Saman to sign a number of blank papers for reasons that were not explained to him. He explained that he signed because he was afraid that he would be tortured if he did not sign the papers. He was refused legal counsel or the opportunity to speak with a senior police officer about his situation. He was not produced before any doctor or any senior police officers or judicial officer before signing the blank papers.
Saman was produced before the Magistrate of Colombo and remanded at the Colombo Remand Prison on 29 January 2009. Later, he learned that he had been accused of committing a crime under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, but a detailed chargesheet had yet to be filed. He also learned that the CID officers had filed two cases against him; one in the Magistrate Court of Kegalle under case No: B/1197/11 and another in the High Court of Kegalle under case No: 3059/11. He is to appear before a judge for both cases on 8 May 2012. Soon after, Saman was transferred to Bogambara Remand Prison. His remand number is No: 658.
Mr. Saman believes that he was arrested and arbitrarily detained by the CID officers as punishment for resigning from the Army. He has been detained for more than three years. He calls for his immediate release and the guarantee of his basic rights enshrined by the Constitution of Sri Lanka.
I request your urgent intervention to ensure that the authorities listed below instigate an immediate investigation into the allegations of illegal arrest, illegal detention, torture by the police perpetrators, and the prosecution of those proven to be responsible under the criminal law of the country for misusing powers of state officers and for wrongful prosecution. The officers involved must also be subjected to internal investigations for the breach of the department orders as issued by the police department.
Yours sincerely, William Nicholas Gomes William’s Desk
Maslow's hierarchy of needs
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