The Government of Sri Lanka says the state of emergency and the curfew were imposed in the country for the sole purpose of safeguarding the peace, public life and public and private property.
A statement issued by the Government Information Department today (03) stated that the government is committed to protecting the freedom of speech and expression and the right to protest peacefully, as well as public order and the protection of public and private property.
The statement further reads:
“The government has pledged to uphold and promote democratic rights, including freedom of speech and expression, and the right to peaceful assembly and protest. This has been proven in practice over the past two years.”
“The incumbent President has not used batons, tear gas or water cannons on any peaceful protests or demonstrations since taking office.”
“In some cases, representatives of the protesters were summoned to the Presidential Secretariat to discuss issues and resolve them. A separate area was set aside near the Presidential Secretariat for protests and demonstrations.”
“During a protest in Mirihana on Thursday, March 31, some people had behaved in a violent manner and damaged public and private property. Some people were injured and the property damage was estimated at Rs. 39 million rupees.”
“The state of emergency and curfew were imposed in accordance with accepted legal provisions with the aim of protecting public life, public order and public and private property.”