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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 07/06/2012, 00.00

    SRI LANKA

    Christians defend Buddhist professor after he receives death threats

    Melani Manel Perera

    Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri, president of the Federation of University Teachers' Association (FUTA), criticised the government's education policy. Persons unknown threatened him. The Christian Solidarity Movement (CSM) called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa to guarantee freedom of expression and freedom of thought to all citizens.

    Colombo (AsiaNews) - Lay and religious Christian activists have called on Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa to protect the life of Nirmal Ranjith Devasiri (pictured), a Buddhist and a senior lecturer in the Department of History at the University of Colombo as well as president of the Federation of University Teachers' Association (FUTA). In the past few days, he has received threatening phone calls and death threats from persons unknown for criticising government funding of education.

    The Christian Solidarity Movement (CSM) wants an official inquiry in recognition that "the free expression of thoughts and freedom of involvement in trade union activities are fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution in Sri Lanka and human rights charter of the United Nations."

    Prof Devasiri is politically involved. He has criticised the government, demanding that 6 per cent of GDP be invested in education. He has also called for better wages for university lecturer and their participation in committees making decision in the education field.

    Since he and his colleagues organised a strike, he and his family have received threats from strangers.

    "In view of recent cases of abductions and disappearances, the threats against Prof Devasiri worry us," the CSM said.

    "The government cannot allow such things. It must promote freedom of thought and freedom of expression, which are fundamental principles in every democracy. Failure to do so means that the government is against democracy."

     

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    See also

    24/09/2012 SRI LANKA
    A four-day march to revitalise universities
    Thousands of people are joining a new protest by the Federation of University Teachers Association (FUTA). The latter's strike is already in its third month. Religious leaders urge government and teachers to focus on students, the country's "most precious resource."

    30/06/2010 SRI LANKA
    School texts in Sri Lanka defame Christians, the Church and the Pope
    The new textbooks offered by the Ministry equate Christianity and Western culture, accused of trying to destroy the Sinhalese culture. Archbishop of Colombo: "This is an attempt to bring disharmony between religious communities and to inculcate a defamatory image in the minds of students."

    16/09/2011 SRI LANKA
    Jaffna history, art and culture for the new generations
    An exhibit and seminar (24-27 September) will showcase ancient artefacts, goods, images, sculptures and studies about the glory days of the northern peninsula. Indian scholars will present papers. The exhibit is open to foreigners.

    25/03/2010 SRI LANKA
    Sri Lanka, political industry at the service of a totalitarian regime
    An anthropologist and writer, describes the reality today in the Asian nation, characterized by propaganda and slogans inspired by patriotism to maintain power. No freedom of thought, opponents are being jailed and convicted on false accusations. Power is centralized in the hands of a narrow circle that stifles the nation.

    23/10/2006 CHINA
    Beijing plans to register 17 million Internet bloggers

    The head of the government's Internet Society said making known the real identity of web users was an unavoidable choice. Legislators are currently assessing a proposal to ban the publication of opinions under pseudonyms.





    Editor's choices

    CHINA - VATICAN
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    The documentation of that violent period was burned or buried in archives. Only a few survivors speak. The persecutors are silent in fear. The burning of religious objects and furnishings in Hebei. Bishops humiliated and arrested in Henan; nuns beaten with sticks and killed, or buried alive. A persecution that "is not over yet"; Today it is perhaps only more subtle.


    CHINA
    Silence shrouds 50th anniversary of Cultural Revolution in China and in the West

    Bernardo Cervellera

    The bloody campaign launched by Mao Zedong killed nearly 2 million people and sent  a further 4 million to concentration camps. Every Chinese has been marked by fear. But today, no memorial service has been planned and no newspaper article has appeared. The Party’s internal struggles and Xi Jinping’s fear of ending up like the USSR. Even today, as then, there are those in Europe who keep quiet and laud the myth of China. Many are predicting a return to the "great chaos".

     


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