Sri Lanka. In January, the government announced that it was suspending the ceasefire from 2002, which has in practice failed long ago. Hard fighting broke out immediately in the northern part of the country between the army and the Tamil guerrilla LTTE. The guerrillas, in their home districts, increasingly responded with a series of terrorist attacks in other parts of the country. Two ministers were killed in the blast. A large number of civilians were killed during the year in a series of attacks against buses. the railway station in Colombo. Several of the deaths were carried out by suicide bombers.
In the land battles in the north, the army, under heavy losses on both sides, moved further into Tamil soil and captured several strategically important places, as well as one of the guerrilla’s large training camps.
Tens of thousands of civilian Tamils fled the fighting and aid organizations found it difficult to reach supplies. In September, the UN removed its civilian personnel from guerrilla-controlled areas.
- ABBREVIATIONFINDER: Click to see the meanings of 2-letter acronym and abbreviation of SL in general and in geography as Sri Lanka in particular.
The war led to an increasingly tougher social climate, and in May Sri Lanka was forced to leave its seat on the UN Human Rights Council after criticism for lack of respect for human rights. International media organizations also criticized the limited freedom of the press in Sri Lanka.
Internally, the coalition government received support for its hard line, and in May it won clearly in provincial elections in the area in the east that was withdrawn from the guerrilla in 2007. However, there was much talk of electoral fraud and threats to the electorate.
The army was believed to have made a breakthrough when in November it removed the guerrillas from its last stronghold on the west coast of the island. It made the guerrilla supplies of equipment from southern India more difficult and allowed the army to advance towards the strongest stronghold of the guerrillas, the city of Kilinochchi, from three directions. During the final weeks of the year, fierce fighting was fought on the outskirts of the city.
In 2016, the country continued to arrest presumed members of the LTTE under the so-called PTA provisions that allowed for unlimited administrative detention (no nuisance judges) and reverse burden of proof: the detainee was guilty to the contrary was proven. In August, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination found that PTA was used almost exclusively against Tamils and was therefore a discriminatory instrument.
In May, the country ratified the International Disappearance Convention, but by the end of the year, legislation had not been adopted that criminalized disappearance. The Presidential Commission for the Inquiry into Missing Persons reported in July that it had received 19,000 civilian reports of disappearances.
The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture visited Sri Lanka in May 2016. He found that the police continued to use serious forms of torture, albeit possibly to a lesser extent than during the civil war. He further noted that the long-standing detention provisions of the PTA “almost invited torture and ill-treatment as routine work tools”. In August, the country ratified a declaration under the UN Convention against Torture, thereby recognizing the UN Torture Committee’s right to receive inquiries from individuals who believe their rights under the Convention are violated. In November, Sri Lanka was called to the UN Torture Committee to comment on incoming complaints. They were all rejected.
In November, the IMF granted a loan of DKK 162.5 million. US $ to Sri Lanka and expressed optimism about developments in the country. The previous month, both the World Bank and Japan’s development organization had allocated $ 100 million each. US $ to the country. In April, the IMF had given Sri Lanka a debt of $ 1.5 billion. US $ to reduce its foreign debt.
In April 2017, Amnesty International published the report Only Justice can heal our wounds on decades of disappearance in Sri Lanka and the need for the guilty to be held accountable. Over 100,000 had disappeared in the country since the 1980s.
According to Countryaah reports, the population of Sri Lanka in 2008 was 20,261,626, ranking number 59 in the world. The population growth rate was 0.720% yearly, and the population density was 323.1022 people per km2.