Yesterday PHR reported on three Sri Lankan physicians whom government officials detained on 16 May 2009.? PHR believes the government is trying to suppress facts of the humanitarian crisis, civilian casualties, and attacks on hospitals during the recent routing of Tamil separatist forces that these doctors reported to the outside world.? PHR called on the Sri Lankan government to
release the doctors immediately and to respect their rights to legal counsel and to receive medical care as well as family visits.? The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) should also be given immediate access to the doctors.
According to Mahinda Samarasinghe, Sri Lanka’s Minister?for?Human Rights?and Disaster Management, detention orders have been issued against all three physicians.Physicians for Human Rights today received information from a reliable source in Sri Lanka informing us that authorities have allowed ICRC access to the two doctors detained at the Terrorist Investigation Division in Colombo – Dr. Thangamutha Sathiyamoorthy? and Dr. V. Shanmugarajah.? Dr. Thurairaja Varatharajah is still missing.