An islandwide signature campaign has been launched calling for the repeal of the draconian Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA).

The campaign is being carried out with the assistance of civil and political forces representing all communities under the auspices of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).

Former President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga has signed the petition after necessary arrangements were made by TNA media spokesperson parliamentarian M.A. Sumanthiran.

Meanwhile, TNA leader R. Sampanthan also signed the petition at his residence yesterday (18).


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TNA spokesperson M.A. Sumanthiran noted that the act was introduced in 1979 as a temporary provision but has continued for over 40 years.

“During this period, we have witnessed its use to crush dissent against the government of the day, as it has been done consistently in the past and continues today. The government has given several assurances in the past that this legislation will be repealed, and a law enacted in its place that complies with international human rights standards and norms. However, the recent Amendment Bill presented to Parliament falls short of such assurances and fails to address any of the draconian provisions in the PTA," Sumanthiran said, adding that this country-wide campaign is to urge the government to honor its commitment to repeal the PTA.