“It is worrying that even after months of widespread protests in the country, the Sri Lankan police needs to be constantly reminded of their duty to facilitate the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and exercise restraint in the use of force while policing assemblies. Their actions over the last several months have cost the lives of many peaceful protestors including another death today.
“Less lethal weapons that have indiscriminate effects and a high potential for harm must not be used where there is no widespread violence against persons during a peaceful assembly. Videos from yesterday show that the protesters were in a confined space without the possibility for dispersal or escape and yet the police used water cannons and tear gas in violation of international human rights law and standards on the use of force.
“Independent and impartial investigations must be promptly launched into all allegations of human rights violations, including the deaths reported in the context of the protests, so that all those found responsible are brought to justice in fair trials.”
On Sunday February 26, 2023, the National People’s Power party held a protest in Colombo against the postponement of the local Government elections.
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