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ICC (06/22/06) – On Saturday, 17th of June 2006 three members of the National Christian Evangelical Alliance of Sri Lanka (NCEASL) staff on duty at the NCEASL Centre in Pamunugama were arrested. All three staff belonged to the minority Tamil Christian community.

Early that morning there were two loud explosions on the Pamunugama coast and villagers had seen men in diving gear appearing on the shore. They alerted the Police on suspicion that these were LTTE cadres. The Police apprehended several cadres and large explosive devices. The arrest of the NCEASL staff took place while security forces were on a cordon and search operation in the neighbouring area looking for LTTE terrorists.

The three staff were arrested on suspicion of being terrorists and taken to the Negombo Police station. After a whole day of representation by the NCEASL leadership to those in authority, the Police at last released the oldest member of the staff who was 69 years old and in poor medical health; at around 9:00 p.m. The other two were released only on Sunday the 18th of June afternoon.

This incident occurred in the context of a rapidly deteriorating human rights situation and violence in the entire country. The NCEASL staff in Batticaloa, Jaffna , Mannar and Trincomalee (North and Eastern Provinces ) too are under tremendous pressure, serving in very dangerous situation at risk to their lives.

Please pray for the nation of Sri Lanka in this situation where we are being propelled towards unbridled violence and war.