The recently appointed Sri Lankan Government started abduction, arrest, detention without due process and other acts of presidential and state authority against the peaceful protesters in the Aragalaya people movement.

Applying PTA against peaceful protesters is a violation of international law. Inter-university students federation convenor Wasantha Mudalige, Member of Kelaniya University Student Union Hasantha Jeewantha, and Inter-university Bhikku Federation convenor Galwewa Siridhamma Himi have been punished with a detention order under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. They can be detained for up to 18m without bail.

Using a Draconian anti-terror law to crack down on protesters is a new low for Sri Lankan government. This weaponizes an already highly criticized law, which should be repealed immediately. Using PTA to detain protesters is against Sri Lanka’s international human rights obligations, especially the right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.

Charges of terrorism do not proportionate with any offenses the protesters alleged to have committed. Such an act by authorities is excessive, disproportionate, and violates international law.

Srilankan government create another dark day for human rights. We urge people worldwide to help raise their voices to release university activists from this unlawful detention under PTA.

Regarding the government repression unleashed upon the IUSF Convener and other protesters using the Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA)

Petition Against Arresting Protesters

We strongly condemn the attack on the right to protest by the Sri Lankan government. On the 18th of August, the newly appointed president of Sri Lanka unleashed a brutal attack on a demonstration in Colombo organised by the Inter-University Students Federation (IUSF).
During the attack, they made a total of 20 arrests, including the arrest of IUSF Convenor, Wasantha Mudalige, and a civil society activist, Chintaka Rajapaksa. Some students & activists were brutally assaulted by the police at the point of arrest. At the time of the arrest, police were unable to provide a proper reason why they were arresting the people. Police unlawfully denied these students from exercising their democratic right to protest.
We strongly condemned these latest arrests and demanded the immediate release of all protestors and political oppositionists detained in recent weeks along with the abolishment of the PTA.

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