Colombo, Human Security, Media and Communications, Peace and Conflict, Politics and Governance

Is the President hiding Lasantha Wickremetunge’s killers?

We reproduce in full a letter from Sonali Samarasinghe Wickremetunge to the IGP asking him to record ‘very important details’ known to the Sri Lankan President and at least one other senior government minister, based on the minister’s own admission, pertaining to the identity of her husband Lasantha Wickremetunge’s killers.

The Editor in Chief of the Sunday Leader and one of Sri Lanka’s best known journalists, Lasantha Wickremetunge was murdered on 8th January 2009 en route to work, in broad daylight and on a busy road. The murderers, whoever they are, have yet to be captured.

Groundviews was told that no newspaper in Sri Lanka was willing to carry this letter in full. Therein too lies a story of the pervasive nature of anxiety and fear in Sri Lanka, and the conditions facing independent journalists and media. We publish this letter in the hope that sustained domestic and international pressure to reveal the identity of Lasantha’s killers, especially as they seem to be known to the highest authority in the country, will help find and bring them to justice.

Letter 1

Letter 2

Groundviews captured the unequivocal condemnation of Lasantha’s assasination from many citizens, including former President of Sri Lanka, Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunge, Vivimarie Vanderpoorten, winner of the Gratiaen Prize in 2007 and two other award winning poets Malinda Seneviratne and Indran Amirthanayagam, Lionel Bopage, a former General Secretary of the JVP and Prof. Sumanasiri Liyanage.

View all these articles and more, including videos of Lasantha’s funeral, here.