US Embassy in Sri Lanka insists did not request protest to be blocked

The US Embassy in Sri Lanka today insisted it did not request the authorities to block a protest scheduled to be staged near the embassy in Colombo.

In a brief statement, the Embassy said that it supports the right of Sri Lankans and all people to peaceful protest.

Meanwhile, the US Ambassador to Sri Lanka Alaina B. Teplitz tweeted saying the US welcomes discussion on minority rights, equal protection under law, and security service accountability.

“But let’s do so in safe ways until there’s less to worry about from C-19,” she said.

The Ambassador said that rights to peaceful assembly and free speech are cornerstones of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – rights the US supports even when difficult for the US.

She said that the proposed demonstration in front of the US Embassy was denied by the Police due to the coronavirus restrictions on gatherings.

The Police arrested several people who attempted to stage a protest near the US Embassy in Colombo in violation of a court order.

The ‘Black Lives Matter’ demonstration was to be staged by the Frontline Socialist Party (FSP).

A court order had been issued yesterday preventing the Frontline Socialist Party from going ahead with the protest as a result of the situation in the country with the coronavirus. (Colombo Gazette)

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