The Law and Society Trust (LST) of Colombo wants to see the process of national reconciliation and peace-building accelerated.
To do so, the
leaders of Sri Lanka’s four main religious groups must make greater
The LST met to discuss the recommendations contained in the final report of the Task Force on Reconciliation Consultation Mechanism.
The latter has gathered opinions and testimonies from victims of the civil war
that divided Sinhala and Tamil communities, and has proposed the
creation of a hybrid court.
The LST also wants a quick resolution of the
still existing tensions between Hindu Tamils and the government.
LST members Priyantha Deepal and Anushka Kahandagamage took part in
the consultations held by the presidential commission, travelling to
villages and areas held by the army.
For Priyantha Deepal, "What is amazing is that the relatives of the
victims don’t have feelings of revenge. A Tamil mother told me that she
was willing to forgive the killers of her son and demands that the
government take a position once and for all, so that such tragedies do
not happen again."
Every day, this mother went to the military base where her son was
held, Deepal explained. "I only saw him for a few minutes working in the
camp garden,” the mother said.
“Then, one day, she did not see him come out of his cabin and was
suspicious. She asked to see him, but was denied. Eventually the jailers
led her to her son's cell, which had bits of skin and blood stains on
The other activist, Anushka Kahandagamage said that many more survivors are waiting for news of their loved ones.
"Some of the missing were much older, 71 to 88. For this reason,
relatives are concerned about their disappearance and believe that the
government should assume greater responsibility.”
In Mullathivu (north-eastern Sri Lanka), Hindu residents have more
concerns: their place of burial and the temple (Kovil) is still occupied
by the army.
"For seven generations, we worshipped the gods in that temple,” one
resident said. “Please, tell the government to give us our land back."
LST programme director Sandun Tudugala noted “it is the duty of us
activists to express our objections if the government does not keep its
“We have put a lot of effort to support the new government in a big
political revolution,” he said. "Now it is the time for the yahapalana
government to meet the demands of the victims.”
“Since they teach mutual understanding, the leaders of the big
religions can really play a big role in taking care of others and spread
peace and unity."