South Asia Sri Lanka Party Provident South Asia Sri Lanka

Restrictions jeopardize freedom of expression – Amnesty International

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COLOMBO (News 1st) – Amnesty International noted that it is concerned over Sri Lanka Police denying permission for the protest by trade unions, students and political parties.

Protestors must not be required to obtain permission from authorities, to exercise basic human rights such as the right to peaceful assembly.The reasons for denying permission for the protest quoted by the Police do not amount to legitimate restrictions against peaceful assembly as provided by international law, said Amnesty International.It added that the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association has stipulated that "the free flow of traffic should not automatically take precedence over freedom of peaceful assembly."Amnesty International South Asia said that urban spaces are not only an area for circulation but also spaces for participation.

Many assemblies, by nature, involve a certain level of disruption to ordinary life or the rights of others.It added that nevertheless, disproportionate restrictions to protest, jeopardise the right to freedom of expression.Freedom of peaceful assembly is a right, not a privilege.

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