Rights in Exile Programme

Refugee Legal Aid Information for Lawyers Representing Refugees Globally

Sri Lanka - COI

Please see the report: 'Tainted Peace: Torture in Sri Lanka since May 2009'.  Click here for the summary, and click here for the full report.

Click here to see the host countries of refugees originating from Sri Lanka.

Mr Gilberto Algar-Faria

Email: g [dot] j [dot] algar-fariaatbristol [dot] ac [dot] uk

Gilberto has lived and researched in Sri Lanka intermittently between 2012 and 2014, and is currently a PhD Candidate at the University of Bristol. He is also a Visiting Scholar at the University of Sydney from July until September 2014 and a Research Associate at the Foreign Policy Centre since December 2013. He has also previously been an External Consultant for International Alert in Sri Lanka. His research focuses on civil society and the state in post-war settings, with a particular interest in the contrast between liberal and illiberal conceptions of society and the nature of the environment of a society that is caught between war and peace. In the Sri Lankan context he has researched a full range of rights and discrimination issues from gender, ethnicity and religion perspectives. He has spent periods of time in the Southern, Uva, Central, North Central, Eastern and Western provinces of Sri Lanka.

Frederica Jansz

Email: fjanszatgmail [dot] com

Frederica Jansz, currently residing in the United States, has lived in Sri Lanka for over four decades and has worked actively as a journalist and editor of a leading national newspaper. She has extensive experience in regularly commenting on a society that was caught in war, then one that was in between war and peace.  She has spoken at numerous international forums and is currently actively involved in functioning as an Expert Witness for Sri Lankan asylum seekers. Her company, ‘Asylum Pro Consultancy,’ works actively with UK based law firms and provides an Expert Witness service as well as document verification.

Dr Kalinga Tudor Silva

Email: ktsilvaatslt [dot] lk

Dr Silva is a senior professor in Sociology in the University of Peradeniya and serves as the Executive Director of the International Centre for Ethnic Studies. He has held a number of fellowships and teaching positions at various institutions abroad, and has served as a visiting professor in a number of overseas universities, both in Europe and the US.

His research areas include ethnicity, caste, social inequality, problems of poverty and sociological analyses of suicide in Sri Lanka. These topics have been the focus of over 100 local and international publications that Dr. Silva has authored.

Dr Neil DeVotta

Email: devottnatwfu [dot] edu 

Neil DeVotta was born in Sri Lanka and had his primary and secondary education in the country before moving to the United States. He holds a Ph.D. in politics from the University of Texas at Austin and is currently an Associate Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Wake Forest University in North Carolina. He has written extensively on Sri Lanka and returns regularly to the island to pursue his various research interests.

Frances Harrison

Email: francescsharrisonatgmail [dot] com 

Ms. Harrison was educated at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, as well as the School of Oriental & African Studies, and Imperial College in London. She is currently project manager for the International Truth and Justice Project – Sri Lanka which comes under the Foundation for Human Rights in South Africa, which is run by a former South African Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner. From 2000-4 she was the resident BBC Correspondent in Sri Lanka, traveling extensively to the north of the island to rebel held areas in the Vanni and to the government-held Jaffna Peninsula. Ms. Harrison recently researched and wrote a book on the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka, called Still Counting the Dead: Survivors of Sri Lanka’s Hidden War, which covers the 2009 phase of the conflict and immediate aftermath based on interviews with Tamils throughout Europe and Australia. Ms. Harrison also produced a documentary film for the BBC on the on systematic on-going human rights violations in Sri Lanka after the war. After the documentary she put together a project to take testimony from 40 survivors of sexual violence and torture from Sri Lanka resulting in a report entitled Sri Lanka’s Unfinished War launched by Yasmin Sooka and the Bar Human Rights Committee. She has continued to work for Ms. Sooka in a project documenting war crimes and crimes against humanity in Sri Lanka with the help of several experienced ex ICTY prosecutors and investigators and transitional justice and gender experts. 

Dr Kanchana Ruwanpura

Email: kanchana [dot] ruwanpuraated [dot] ac [dot] uk

Dr Kanchana Ruwanpura is a Senior Lecturer in Human Geography in the School of Geosciences. While a dual citizen (British-Sri Lanka), as a native of Sri Lanka, Dr. Ruwanpura's primary focus of research has been on gender, ethnicity and conflict, post-disaster politics, and more recently labour politics, focussing primarily on Sri Lanka. Her research spans three broad themes: a) the diversity of lived and structured spaces which focus on the connections between ethno-nationalism, post-disaster, materiality and the environment; b) the convergence and divergence of global governance regimes as everyday experiences for labour; and c) connections between civil society initiatives and uneven development processes. Her publications include: Garments without guilt? Uneven labour geographies and ethical trading—Sri Lankan labour perspectives (2015); Women, armed conflict, and peacemaking in Sri Lanka: Toward a political economy perspective (2010) and Between the war and the sea: critical events, contiguities and feminist work in Sri Lanka (2007). 

Reports, Commentaries and Relevant Documents:

  • Commentary on the April 2012 Sri Lanka OGN Published by Still Human, Still Here with commentaries on the Operational Guidance Notes (OGN) issued by the UK Border Agency on Sri Lanka. This is intended as a tool to assist legal practitioners identify the relevant country of origin information and to help ensure that all relevant material is considered by decision-makers.
  • Commentary on the December 2011 Sri Lanka OGN.
  • Commentary on the March 2011 Sri Lanka OGN. Published by Still Human, Still Here with commentaries on the Operational Guidance Notes (OGN) issued by the UK Border Agency on Sri Lanka. This is intended as a tool to assist legal practitioners identify the relevant country of origin information and to help ensure that all relevant material is considered by decision-makers.

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