Human Rights Defender Ruki Fernando and Fr. Praveen OMI Released from Police Custody
Sri Lanka – We have been informed that prominent Human Rights defenders Ruki Fernando and Fr. Praveen OMI have been released from police custody on 19 March 2014 at 1:30am. The two activists were arrested and detained by the police Terrorism Investigation Department (TID) under provisions of the draconian Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) on 16 March 2014 during their fact finding mission on the arrest of Ms. Jeyakumari Balendran. After being held for three days without access to lawyers or family they were released without charges being filed against them.
Upon news of their arrests civil society organizations, activists, and the media conducted a massive worldwide campaign demanding their release proving yet again the power of solidarity.
We hope to continue this solidarity in fighting for the protection, safety and release of human rights defenders everywhere.