TV reporter hacked to death in Jaffna

first_img News Help by sharing this information Follow the news on Sri Lanka Reporters Without Borders is outraged by the murder of Paranirupasingam Devakumar, a television reporter of Tamil origin, who was hacked to death yesterday evening as he was returning to his home a few kilometres outside the northern city of Jaffna. A friend who was with him was also killed in the attack.“Devakumar is the latest journalist to fall victim to the spiral of violence that has wracked the Jaffna peninsula since fighting between the government and Tamil Tigers resumed in 2006,” the press freedom organisation said. “The government in Colombo must do everything possible to establish the circumstances of this murder and identity those responsible, so that it does not go unpunished as so many others have.”Reporters Without Borders added: “Although no suspect has yet been found, the security forces should explain how this attack took place in an area of the peninsula that is supposed to be under close military control. The government is exposing both its inability and its lack of political will to protect journalists.”Aged 36, Devakumar had worked for the past three years for the three stations owned by the Maharaja Television group – MTV, Sirasa TV and Shakthi TV. He was hacked to death by an unidentified group of assailants at Navanthurai, a few kilometres outside Jaffna, as he was returning to his home in Vaddukoddai. The friend accompanying him, 24-year-old computer technician Mahendran Varadan, died later in hospital from the injuries he sustained in the attack.The government has reportedly assigned three police teams to probe the incident. Priority could not be given to any hypothesis for the time being as Devakumar was known for covering both sides of the war between the government forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). He had not been criticised or threatened in the past and a personal motive cannot be ruled out.Stressing that Devakumar’s murder was just the latest in a series of killings of journalists in the troubled Jaffna region, the Free Media Movement said condemnations and promises of investigations had no meaning “without the political will” to complete the investigations. “The repugnant impunity that aids and abets violence against journalists and media personnel must come to an end,” the FMM said.Caught in the crossfire between two armed forces, journalists in the Jaffna peninsula are constantly the targets of threats, kidnappings and murders, and many of them have been forced to flee the region. Reporters Without Borders has long condemned the untenability of this situation in its press releases and in a report entitled “Jaffna’s media in the grip of terror” which it published on 24 August 2007 as a member of an international press freedom mission to Sri Lanka.President Mahinda Rajapaksa recently reiterated his determination to “defeat the terrorism” of the Tamil Tigers, who are blamed for the frequent deadly bombings in the Colombo region. Despite their attempts to suppress the information, the security forces have sustained heavy losses in the course of their attempts in recent months to dislodge the LTTE from the Jaffna peninsula. Sri Lanka: tamil reporter held on absurd terrorism charge Reporters Without Borders is outraged by the murder of Paranirupasingam Devakumar, a television reporter of Tamil origin, who was hacked to death yesterday evening as he was returning to his home, in an area of the Jaffna peninsula that is supposed to be under control of the government forces. “The government is exposing its inability to protect journalists,” the press freedom organisation said. July 15, 2020 Find out more News January 13, 2021 Find out more Sri Lanka: RSF signs joint statement on attacks against human rights defenders, lawyers and journalists Sri LankaAsia – Pacific Receive email alerts Organisation News to go further RSF_en Sri LankaAsia – Pacific News July 29, 2020 Find out more Sri Lanka: Journalist manhandled by notorious police inspector currently on trial May 29, 2008 – Updated on January 20, 2016 TV reporter hacked to death in Jaffnalast_img read more

Art of gold

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Pope Benedict XVI condemns Mexico’s drug violence

first_img Sharing is caring! Share 39 Views   no discussions The BBC’s Will Grant: “Among the crowd are all three presidential candidates as well as the world’s richest man”Pope Benedict XVI has condemned drug-trafficking and corruption at a huge open-air Mass in central Mexico. He urged Catholics to look to their faith in response to poverty and crime and to reject violence and revenge. More than 500,000 people gathered to hear his message beside the Christ the King monument in Silao – one of the most important symbols of Mexican Catholicism. Pope Benedict was on his first visit to the Latin American country.“At this time when so many families are separated or forced to emigrate, when so many are suffering due to poverty, corruption, domestic violence, drug trafficking, the crisis of values and increased crime, we come to Mary in search of consolation, strength and hope,” he said in a prayer. Mexico has the world’s second largest Catholic congregation after Brazil.Huge crowds have turned out to greet the Pope during his visit, and thousands camped out in Silao’s Bicentennial Park overnight on Saturday awaiting the Mass.“We could hardly sleep because of the emotion and now we can see the Pope,” said Xochitl Alvarez, an indigenous woman who said she had travelled hundreds of miles from southern Mexico.The main candidates for July’s presidential election were in attendance, as well as Mexican tycoons including Carlos Slim, the richest man in the world.Welcome presenceOn Saturday, the Pope had talks with President Felipe Calderon, with whom he discussed the drug-related violence that has killed more than 47,000 Mexicans over the past five years.The Mexican presidency said the Pope’s private meeting with Mr Calderon covered a range of topics including climate change and organised crime.The Pope’s visit to Silao was the showpiece event of his first trip to MexicoThe BBC’s Will Grant in Mexico says few expect that the Pope’s visit will have a significant impact on Mexico’s complicated political and military situation, but the country’s Catholics are largely glad of his presence. However, his tour has been dogged by protests over child sex abuse scandals in the Church and criticism of his stance of gay rights.Some 88% of Mexicans – almost 100 million people – are Roman Catholic, and the Pope’s predecessor, John Paul II, was a regular visitor to the country.On Monday, the Pope’s tour will take him to Cuba. He has said the island’s Marxist structure “no longer corresponds to reality” and called for “new models” of government to be put in place.BBC News FaithLifestyle Pope Benedict XVI condemns Mexico’s drug violence by: – March 26, 2012center_img Tweet Share Sharelast_img read more