ECONOMYNEXT – The Human Rights Commission of Sri Lanka (HRCSL) has directed the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) to investigate and submit a report on a complaint filed by the Young Journalists Association (YJA) about the safety and well-being of young poet Ahnaf Jazeem.
Jazeem is being held by the TID under a detention order over a book of poetry titled Nawarasam that allegedly promoted extremism. The HRCSL has directed the TID in writing today (April 1) to investigate claims made by the JLA that the poet is not allowed visits from his lawyers, that hat he was bitten by a rat while in detention, and that he is being subjected to an investigation that he was not originally apprehended for.
The JLA first wrote to the HRCSL on December 9 last year and renewed its appeal again this Monday (29), detailing the conditions of Jazeem’s detention.
Jazeem was arrested on May 16 last year. His arrest and continued detention has been criticised by a number of writers and activists.
Speaking of: there is a specific, current, and particularly flabbergasting case of imprisonment to talk about. A poet who has been in prison for the last six months (without so much as being charged, of course) because his book of poems is being accused of being "extremist." https://t.co/6JZX93BMj2
— Vajra Chandrasekera (@_vajra) December 7, 2020