The brutal attack on peaceful protesters must be condemned and the leaders who instigated their followers to carry out acts of violence must accept responsibility, former Speaker Karu Jayasuriya said.

Noting that the well-planned and organised mob attack targeting peaceful protesters near the Galle Face Green and Temple Trees is a barbaric and despicable act, the former Speaker pointed out that this shameful incident has tarnished Sri Lanka’s image globally.

Issuing a press release today (09) after ruling party supporters attacked crowds protesting at the government's handling of the economic crisis, Jayasuriya said that all leaders who instigated their supporters to carry out such inhumane and barbaric acts must take responsibility and enforce the law to the fullest extent against all those who unleashed violence.

 

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"This incident clearly demonstrates the violent tendencies of a party that acts only to consolidate power while disregarding the voices of this country’s people. It has revealed the dictatorship that operates by unleashing repression and terror on its own people. Their oppressive mentality has worked to suppress public opinion through repression and violence." - Karu Jayasuriya

 

Considering the tragic fate of such leaders who carried out similar acts on their own countrymen, he said that it is evident that the rule of such leaders and their forces are often short lived.

"But unfortunately, it is the country and its innocent people who had to pay the ultimate price," he said.

"Especially in a country where the lives of millions of people have been sacrificed in the past decades due to violence and anti-democratic practices, it would be a tragedy for the entire nation if any force or leader were to resort to such violence again. Therefore, we urge the peaceful people of the entire country at this juncture to come forward to prevent our motherland from becoming a victim of such tragedies again. We also call on all civil and political forces that value democracy to take immediate action to ensure the freedom and rights of the people as well as maintain peace in the country," he added.