Release Tissa: IFJ Launches Video Campaign to Free Sri Lanka Journalist

 

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and its

local affiliates in Sri

Lanka today launched an online campaign video

condemning the arrest and indictment of senior Tamil journalist J.S.

Tissainayagam, who passed his sixth month in jail on September

7.

 

All

individuals and organisations are invited to join the campaign to Stop the War

on Journalists in Sri Lanka

and watch the “Release Tissa” video at http://asiapacific.ifj.org/articles/free-tissainayagam to help generate international support to end the attacks on free media in

Sri

Lanka.

 

Tissainayagam was

arrested on March 7, 2008, while working as the editor of the online magazine www.outreachsl.com.

 

After being

held for five months without charge, Tissainayagam has been formally indicted by the High

Court of Sri Lanka under emergency and anti-terrorism laws, according to the

Free Media Movement (FMM), an IFJ

affiliate.

 

The

indictment reportedly refers to the printing, publishing and distribution of the

North Eastern

Monthly between June 1, 2006, and June 1, 2007; alleged

offences to do with bringing the Government into disrepute; and the violation of

2006 Emergency Regulations with regard to allegations of aiding and abetting

terrorist organisations through raising money for the

magazine.

 

“The

indictment against Tissainayagamin a country where journalism and

journalists already face extreme threats marks a dangerous turning point for

freedom of expression and the right to information in Sri

Lanka,” IFJ

Asia-Pacific said.

 

“The IFJ

joins the international press freedom community in supporting our Sri Lankan

colleagues who continue tirelessly to fight for the safety and protection of

their colleagues and friends, including Tissainayagam.”

 

For

further information contact IFJ

Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919

 

The IFJ

represents over 600,000 in 122 countries worldwide