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Two human rights activists freed

2014 Mar 19

The two human rights activists who were arrested over the weekend, were set free last night, police spokesman SSP Ajith Rohana said.

He said that Ruki Fernando and Catholic Priest, Father Praveen Maheshan, were produced before a Magistrate last night and released.

They were arrested in Kilinochchi by the Terrorist Investigations Department under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (TID) and questioned in Colombo before being released.

The police spokesman said that further investigations which led to their arrests will continue.

Meanwhile a Tamil woman who was arrested earlier, Balendran Jeyakumari, remains in detention at the Boosa camp. Jeyakumari, campaigned for the families of the disappeared, was also arrested on terrorism related charges.

There was a huge outcry over the arrest of Ruki Fernando and Father Praveen Maheshan with the United States, Britain and human rights groups raising concerns and demanding their release.

The issue was also raised at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva but the Government defended the arrest saying it was linked to attempts by the LTTE to regroup in the North.

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