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Commission says witnesses are safe

2014 Jun 09

The Presidential Commission to Investigate into Complaints Regarding Missing Persons says witnesses giving evidence to the Commission have been assured protection.

Secretary to the Presidential Commission H.W Gunadasa says so far the commission has not received any complaints over threats being faced by those giving evidence.

“We record statements in public and the media as well as civil society can witness the statements being recorded. It is not done in private. So far we have not had an issue over it,” he said.

However Gunadasa added that if anyone feels they will face threats to their lives if they give evidence in public then the commission makes arrangements for those witnesses to give evidence behind closed doors.

Meanwhile the Presidential Commission conducted hearings in Batticaloa over the weekend and as part of those hearings it recorded statements from witnesses over complaints lodged earlier regarding persons said to have gone missing.

The Commission had previously conducted Public Sittings in January, February and March this year in Killinochchi, Jaffna and Batticaloa respectively.

To date, 18,590 complaints have been received, inclusive of approximately 5,000 from relatives of missing security forces personnel. The Commission had thus far inquired into 462 complaints, which are being analysed for further investigations through an independent Investigation team.  (Colombo Gazette)

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