Category Archives: press freedom

Switzerland Surrenders …. While the Machinations of a Cabal appear in the Deep Seas

Political Editor of the Sunday Times, 5 January 2019, where the title runs  “UNP leadership: Parliamentary group to decide next week”

Switzerland has publicly expressed regrets for challenging Sri Lankan “authorities’ commitment to due process” and for calling that “into question” over the saga involving an embattled staffer at the embassy in Colombo. Their about turn, embarrassingly coming down a few notches, was spelt out in an official Third Person Note (TPN) Bern sent on December 30, 2019 to the Ministry of Foreign Relations. This was after diplomatic consultations got under way with a special envoy to ease tensions between the two countries. The note was released both in Colombo and Bern simultaneously.

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Bar Association canes Swiss Embassy for Its Garnier Act

News Item in Island, 4 January 2019,where the title reads thus …. “BASL takes umbrage over Swiss Govt. statement”

The Bar Association of Sri Lanka yesterday took umbrage over the high handed statement issued by the Swiss government on December 30 relating to proceedings pending in the magistrates Court of Colombo over the purported abduction of one of its Colombo embassy’s local employees.

Hanspeter Mock

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The AUSTRALIAN ‘Umpire’ bats for Sajith and depicts Gota as Anti-Democratic Ogre

 Amanda Hodge in The Weekend Australian, 16 November 2019, where the title runs Sri Lanka election dilemma: democracy or the dread of dynasty”

Ahead of Sri Lanka’s polarising presidential elections on Saturday, an editorial tinged with desperation in the Sunday Observer newspaper urged voters “to keep the lights on in Asia’s oldest democracy. Vote to keep the journalists in this newsroom and newsrooms across the country, who are trying to be truth-tellers, safe from harm,” it said. “There are 35 candidates on the November 16 ballot paper, but a presidential election is ultim­ately a choice between two candidates. One of them terrifies us.”

Presidential candidate Gotabaya Rajapaksa with the Sinhalese-Buddhist nationalist party on Wednesday during the last political rally before heading to the polls on Saturday. Picture: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images.

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French Revolutionary Songs …. Marchons! Marchons!

 Satyajith Andradi, in Island, 12 July 2019, with this titleLa Marseillaise And L’internationale – Revolutionary Songs From France”

 “How many on our flesh eat their fill?
But if the ravens, the vultures, One morning disappeared,
The Sun would shine still.” …..
L’Internationale; trans; Michell Abidor

the Storming of the Bastille

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Canadian Cha-Cha-Cha: Genocide Claims

Chandre Dharmawardana, in Colombo Telegraph, 5 July 2019, where the title “Two Alleged Genocides – And Canada’s Claimed Support For Conflict Prevention In Sri Lanka”

David McKinnon, Canada’s High Commissioner to Sri Lanka  has stated, on Canada’s National Day  that  “Canada would continue to support conflict prevention efforts in Sri Lanka, where  it has been seen how hate speech and media can entrench communal divisions”.  Meanwhile back in Canada, successive Canadian governments have failed to understand how this very “hate speech” is being entrenched in Canadian municipal discourse and even in parliamentary proceedings by militant diaspora groups. They wish to replay the old ethnic animosities of their homeland  in Canada too.

fervent demonstrations in Toronto mounted by Canadian Tamils in 2009 … presaging recent claims

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Hanging Israel Folau: Corporate Power in ‘Marriage’ with the Bigotry of Progressives

Steven Chavura, in The Australian, 25 April 2019, with this title “Beware the Choke Tackle of Diversity”

In the seminal textbook of liberalism, On Liberty (1859), John Stuart Mill depicted a Victorian England full of prudishness and prejudice, describing social convention, rather than the government, as the greatest threat to freedom of speech. In some ways little has changed, for it is not the government that has sought to punish Israel Folau for his public Christianity. Yet at the same time it is not society either, at least not in the sense of a grassroots movement to see his contract terminated. Indeed, many fans in lower-middle-class multicultural suburbs would find nothing offensive about the sentiments on homosexuality that he expressed in his infamous tweets.

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CR de Silva’s Appraisal & Report on Amarasingam’s Study of Tamil Activists in Canada

Chandra R. de Silva:  “Report on Amarnath Amarasingam’s Pain, Pride and Politics: Sri Lankan Tamil Activism in Canada being a Reader’s Confidential Review of a Book Mss sent in response toa request from the publishers …. a book that has since appeared in print as  under the imprint of the University of Georgia Press (2015)

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