The ‘Unfinished War’ in Sri Lanka

Truth and Justice Project - Yasmin SookaThe International Truth and Justice Project – Sri Lanka (ITJP)  released a new report on 23 July 2015. The report, “A Still Unfinished War: Sri Lanka’s Survivors of Torture and Sexual Violence 2009 – 2015,” is a follow up on an earlier report, “An Unfinished War: Torture and Sexual Violence in Sri Lanka.”  It has been released following extensive research and builds upon the organization’s past work and  includes abuses which have occurred since Mr. Maithripala Sirisena was elected president in early January 2015.

The ITJP has documented 180 cases and includes numerous quotations from survivors, the vast majority of whom are ethnic Tamils. In addition to documenting torture, sexual violence, arbitrary detention and more, ITJP also identifies perpetrators and includes  torture sites identified by them.

With  parliamentary election on August 17 and the forthcoming release of a report that focuses on wartime abuses at the UN Human Rights Council’s 30th session in Geneva, Sri Lanka is sure to receive significant international attention in the weeks ahead.

The report tries to convey that, a peaceful transfer of power in Colombo does not mean that truth, justice, accountability or reconciliation will follow inevitably. Failing to deal with the roots of Sri Lanka’s violent history ensures that the prospects of genuine peace become ever more precarious.

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