Friday, August 11, 2017

SRI LANKA: Innocent young man extra-judicially killed by Special Task Force

Hundreds of STF troops and police deployed in Thunnalai crackdown
August 10, 2017
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Dear ________,
SRI LANKA: Innocent young man extra-judicially killed by Special Task Force
Name of Victim: Mr. Sathasivam Madisam of Karadiyanaru in the Batticaloa District.
Alleged perpetrators: Officers attached to the STF Camp of Maduru Oya
Date of incident: 24 July 2017
Place of incident: Karadiyanaru Police Division

According to the information I have received, Mr. Mr. Sathasivam Madisam of Karadiyanaru in the Batticaloa District.
On 24 July, Sathasivam along with his brother and several other friends went to the Mundeniyaru Lagoon to swim. While they were in the water, they observed large numbers of STF officers with weapons approaching the area. All the boys were frightened. The officers then started shooting into the air. The boys ran away as fast as they could. Sathasivam and his brother ran along the bank of the lagoon and both fell into the water. Though several boys tried to rescue Sathasivam, the officers prevented them.
Several minutes later, the bodies of Sathasivam and his brother started floating on top of the water. The officers took both victims to the Chenkaladi Government Hospital. Sathasivam was pronounced dead on arrival. His brother, in a life-threatening situation, was admitted to the hospital for treatment, on an emergency basis.

Later, the Police issued a Communiqué saying that the SFT officers were on a raid to locate illegal sand- mining in the area. However, they did not explain why STF officers were called instead of Karadiyanaru Police Station officers and why they fired their weapons when a peaceful situation existed in the area the whole time.
No evidence of any kind was produced to prove that Sathasivam was engaged in illegal sand-mining at the time of the incident. Relatives and the villagers vehemently protested the illegal actions of the police. They demanded an independent, impartial investigation into the killing. The victim’s relatives maintain that he was extra-judicially killed by the STF officers. This is another example of a gravely faulty Policing System in Sri Lanka. It murders innocent suspects under the guise of crime prevention.

I therefore request your intervention to ensure that an immediate investigation is undertaken into the death of Sathasivam Madisam Karadiyanaru. The officers involved must also be subjected to an internal investigation for breach of Departmental Orders.
Yours Sincerely,
1. Mr. Pujith Jayasundara
Inspector General of Police
New Secretariat
Colombo 1
Fax: +94 11 2 440440 / 327877
2. Mr. Jayantha Jayasooriya PC
Attorney General
Attorney General's Department
Colombo 12
Fax: +94 11 2 436421
3. Mr. N. Ariyadasa Cooray
National Police Commission
3rd Floor, Rotunda Towers
109 Galle Road
Colombo 03
Tel: +94 11 2 395310
Fax: +94 11 2 395867
E-mail: or
4. Secretary
Human Rights Commission
No. 36, Kynsey Road
Colombo 8
Tel: +94 11 2 694 925 / 673 806
Fax: +94 11 2 694 924 / 696 470
Thank you.