Global Tamils urged to help fight legal case of Muslim political prisoner detained under PTA
[TamilNet, Saturday, 20 August 2016, 23:16 GMT] The wife of a Muslim political prisoner, who has been detained under the ‘Prevention of Terrorism Act’ of genocidal Sri Lanka since 2009, has urged global Tamils to financially assist her to cover the legal expenses in her continued fight to release her husband, Mr Abdul Hameed Umar Hattaaph, who has been alleged of involvement in the assassination of a former notorious commander of the genocidal military, Major General (retd) Janaka Perera in 2008 “No lawyer was prepared to take up the case on behalf of my husband when my Father-in-Law was searching for a lawyer before he passed away. Now, my husband is detained with 48 counts against him while all others have been released 6 years ago. Only one Sinhala lawyer was prepared to take up his case following the assistance provided by a legal organisation. But, now that assistance too has stopped,” the mother of three told TamilNet.
Ms Segu Mohaideen Noorjan is barely managing to look after her three children with the income of rupees 500 per day through her makeshift food kiosk.
Colombo-based Centre for Human Rights Development (CHRD) has been covering the legal expenses for the lawyer who has been representing her case since 2013. However, the CHRD has recently informed her that they were not having funds to cover the legal assistance anymore, Ms Mohaideen Noorjan, who has been taking part in the protests held in North demanding the release of political prisoners, told TamilNet.
The plea for financial assistance has come as the Colombo regime was not prepared to release the political prisoners and was insisting to go through the SL judiciary. The fate of processing these cases are assigned to the SL Attorney General’s Department, which keeps political prisoners transferring from jail to jail and postponing the process.
Almost all the so-called Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) cases have been based on false confessions obtained through torture and the detainees like Umar Hattaaph, languishing in Anuradhapura prison are now facing transfer to prisons in Colombo.
In the meantime, the cases of Sinhalese soldiers indicted in the brutal Kumarapuram massacre in Trincomalee was transferred to Anuradhapura Courts and they were all all acquitted.
Instead of taking a principled political decision of releasing all prisoners of war and political prisoners, the SL State has been insisting upon ‘military rehabilitation’ in detention even for the ‘milder’ PTA cases.
But, serious allegations have been levelled against the so-called military rehabilitation of former Tamil fighters in the captivity of SL State. As far as 103 former Tamil fighters, who have been released after the ‘rehabilitation’ have been diagnosed with cancer while there are several cases of persons who have been subjected to the SL military programme having sustained nerve damage losing feelings below their abdomen.
Fr M Sakthivel, a veteran human rights activist in Jaffna in a recent video interview to TamilNet described the military rehabilitation as “politically-motivated genocide”.
Tamil political prisoners have urged renewed struggle to secure their release.
Tamil National Alliance and Opposition Leader R. Sampanthan have come under severe criticism for failing demand immediate release of all political prisoners.
In the meantime, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and the US Ambassador in Colombo have been blamed of giving legitimacy to continued discriminatory and genocidal approach by the SL State by calling the Tamil-speaking political prisoners and prisoners of war as ‘security related detainees’ while ‘engaging’ with the genocidal Sinhala military that has been accused of genocide, war-crimes and crimes against humanity.