[2008-06-12 5.20pm] A government hit list containing the names of 27 journalists has been leaked to foreign diplomatic missions in the country, UNP’s free media spokesman Dayasiri Jayasekara has claimed.
Speaking to the media in Colombo today (Jun 12th), Mr. Jayasekara said he would not reveal the names of the targeted journalists in consideration of their safety.
He said the Prime Minister could be believed after he had promised media rights groups to guarantee the safety of media workers, despite whatever the President or the Defence Secretary say.
The UNP MP said the matter would be raised in Parliament if the need arose.
Speaking further, he said that the Defence Ministry website had indirectly threatened the media against reporting on the war by quoting sources other than official ones.
Military promotions, weapons procurements and investigative reporting on the war have been prohibited, Mr. Jayasekara alleged.
As the Opposition Leader, Ranil Wickremesinghe has the right to brand the Defence Secretary a ‘traitor’, although Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, as a public official, cannot respond through the Defence Ministry website, he said.
The reply should come from the subject minister only in a speech to Parliament, the UNP free media spokesman added.
– lanka dissent.com