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Posts Tagged ‘Amnesty International’

AP

By BHARATHA MALLAWARACHI

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — A series of satellite images taken over Sri Lanka’s former war zone showed the existence of large grave sites and evidence of possible mortar positions near areas that had been packed with trapped civilians, a human rights group said Thursday.

The release of the images was intended to challenge government claims that the military had ceased using heavy weapons in the final months of its war against the Tamil Tiger rebels in the jungles of the north to prevent large-scale civilian deaths.

U.N. reports show more than 7,000 civilians were killed in fighting between mid-January and May, when the military routed the remaining rebels. Rights groups accused the government of heavily shelling civilian areas and the rebels of holding tens of thousands of noncombatants as human shields. Both sides denied the accusations. (more…)

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By BBC NEWS

The London based human rights group, Amnesty International, has called on Sri Lanka authorities to properly address the human rights issues of thousands of displaced Tamils.

Nearly 300,000 IDPs (Internally Displaced People) are housed in camps in northern Sri Lankan district of Vavuniya.

Launching a campaign titled “Unlock the camps,” the AI has described the centres where the IDPs are kept as “detention camps”.

The government of Sri Lanka calls the holding facilities as “welfare centres”.

“The camps are overcrowded and unsanitary. They are run by the military and the camp residents are prevented from leaving them; they are denied basic legal safeguards,” a statement issued by the AI said. (more…)

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By Paul Tighe and Khalid Qayum

July 3 (Bloomberg) — Pakistan’s 2 million refugees displaced by fighting in the northwestern Swat Valley are facing the threat of disease as they cope with damaged water and sewage systems in towns and villages, the United Nations said. (more…)

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