Complete archive of #AskMR Twitter Q&A session

Screen capture from video of President’s address to the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on September 24, 2013, New York, posted by the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Washington D.C. In what would have been an unprecedented engagement with Sri Lanka’s President Mahinda Rajapaksa during his visit to the UN in […]

Is this the beginning of women’s political representation in the Northern Provincial Council?

Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images The Northern Provincial Council Elections has concluded amidst various challenges. While WAN welcomes the conclusion of these elections the need for the full devolution of powers so as to ensure the rights of historically subordinated communities remains.  The women who contested the elections faced several additional challenges to their male counterparts […]

The Politics of Paraya

Image courtesy Mind Adventures Theatre Company We may applaud Mind Adventures’ Paraya for many things. We may celebrate it for its visual mastery, its bold dialogue and the intensity and physicality in the acting. We may perhaps hail the innovation in its mode of presentation as brilliant. We may even call the message it offers […]

The political landscape post the provincial polls

Photo by Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images The elections to the North Western, Central and Northern provincial councils are over and the results have been largely as many political analysts predicted. The UPFA won in both the North Western and the Central provinces, while the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) romped home in the North. The political landscape […]

Welcoming the Verdict of the Tamil People

Image courtesy AFP The TNA has swept the polls in the North. More importantly, the Tamil people have voted courageously, convincingly, and clearly. It was an expected outcome, but as President Rajapaksa took off to New York, he would have known that numbers and statistics on paper, more than just mind-made presumptions, can have a […]

THE TNA TSUNAMI: RE-BALANCING THE EQUATION

Image courtesy The Sri Lanka Guardian The TNA victory has shown that Sri Lanka remains a functioning democracy; that it functions when there is competition; and that with or without the 17th amendment and even under the tightest military supervision, the government can be electorally defeated. Having won the war, the Government has lost the […]

State Facilitated Colonization of Northern Sri Lanka – 2013

On 25th September 2012, the Menik Farm camp in Vavuniya, which at its peak, housed close to 300,000 internally displaced persons, was officially closed down when the Government of Sri Lanka relocated the last batch of IDPs. This formally marked the closure of all post-2009 IDP camps in the North of Sri Lanka. Termed ‘welfare […]

Judiciary apologizes for failing to safeguard basic human rights

Photo by AFP, via Al Jazeera No, not in Sri Lanka, as readers may have hoped, but in Chile. In Chile, last week, on the fortieth anniversary of the military coup by General Pinochet which overthrew the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende, the Chilean Judges Association issued an anticipated but unprecedented apology for the […]

Is there the problem of Co-Existence in the Sri Lankan society?

Lakruwan Wanniarachchi/AFP/Getty Images via The Guardian The sweeping rate of post war changes in Sri Lanka in its sociopolitical and economic domains are so severe that the normalcy that prevailed during the war is being disturbed. Before and during the war the majority community defined the Sri Lankan conflict not as an ethnic conflict but […]

30 Years Ago: Audio recordings of panel discussions

Photograph by Tehani Ariyaratne, from 30 Years Ago To complement the launch of 30 Years Ago and focus on some of the issues the project is anchored to and inspired by, four panel discussions were on the 24th and 25th of August at Park Street Mews, Warehouse D in Colombo. The inaugural session featured Deshamanya Bradman Weerakoon and Dr. […]

What is an economic migrant?

Photo courtesy ABC The governments of Sri Lanka and Australia have recently reached an agreement over how to define the flow of undocumented migrants between these two countries. Both governments seem to agree on the benefits of using the category of “economic migrant” to refer to the thousands of young people who board small vessels to […]

Assessing Local Governance in the Northern Province

Introduction In April 2013 Home for Human Rights (HHR) undertook a survey in the Northern Province. HHR hoped to accurately capture the opinions that the people have about the performance of their local government bodies and locally elected officials. The survey looked at a range of topics including public services, projects, development and public participation. […]

Media monitoring of Navi Pillay’s visit to Sri Lanka

Photograph courtesy UN Sri Lanka At the invitation of the Sri Lankan Government, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay visited Sri Lanka at the end of August in what was, in her words, “the longest official visit I have ever made to a single country”. Groundviews requested Selvaraj Rajasegar, a colleague at the […]

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