Impunity has long been the rule in Sri-Lanka where violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law are concerned, because successive governments wanted it that way.
State Agents have intervened directly in some cases to eliminate witnesses through bribes, threats, harassment, intimidation and violence, including murder, to discourage police investigations, and to mislead the public.
Officials and other influential people have taken full advantage of significant flaws and inefficiencies in Sri Lanka’s justice system to prevent prosecutions.
The failure of the formal justice system to check grave violations of human rights has been a focus of domestic and international pressure on the Sri Lankan government for decades. That pressure has sometimes led the government to appoint ad hoc commissions of inquiry to look into particularly high profile cases. These have proved equally ineffective in combating impunity.
Commissions of Inquiry have not worked as mechanisms of justice in Sri Lanka. Presidential Commissions have proved to be little more than tools to launch partisan attacks against opponents or to deflect criticism when the state has been faced with overwhelming evidence of its complicity in human rights violations.
The Sri-Lankan government is adept at using deceptions and delaying tactics in order to avoid bringing perpetrators of violence to justice, when the perpetrators are connected to the government.
According to Human Rights Watch:
The government has failed to bring to justice those responsible for any of the killings or enforced disappearances of journalists in recent years. For example, the investigation into the January 2009 killing of Lasantha Wickremetunga, the outspoken editor of the Sunday Leader newspaper, has produced no arrests.
British tourist Khuram Shaikh was on holiday from his work as a Red Cross prosthetics worker in Gaza when he was brutally murdered at a resort hotel in Sri-Lanka in December 2011. His Russian colleague, Viktoria Aleksandrovna, was gang raped in the same attack.
All eight suspects have been released on bail with no date listed for the trial. The chief suspect, Sampath Chandra Pushpa Vidanapathirana, a well-connected local government politician, has returned to work.
Sampath is a son of a close associate of Mahinda Rajapaksa. Sampath’s family is involved in thuggery, gang activity and violence in addition to politics!
Two Suspects - The Murder Suspect (Sampath) with a War Criminal
Khuram Shaikh family's MP, Simon Danczuk, fears "political interference" may be responsible for the lack of progress, and wants David Cameron to consider boycotting the Commonwealth heads of government meeting in Sri Lanka this year in protest.
"Despite assurances from the government that there would be a swift and straightforward trial, this is going nowhere and ministers and police are sitting on their hands," he says.
"David Cameron should think twice about attending this meeting while British nationals are being brutally murdered in Sri Lanka with local politicians implicated and their government is not even prepared to investigate properly."
The Rajapaksa regime has recently removed the Chief Justice and appointed one of its cronies, Mohan Peiris. Peiris has no credibility and he is an accomplished liar.
A culture of impunity continues in Sri-Lanka while the civilized world looks on…