Roar Weekly News Roundup: Week 4, July 2016

The last week of July witnessed another major development in the Lasantha Wickrematunge murder case, while a mass killing was reported in Japan.

Local

Lasantha Wickrematunge Case: Suspect Identified

The funeral ceremony of late Lasantha Wickrematunge. Image courtesy: cache.boston.com

The Army Intelligence officer who was arrested by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in connection with the murder of former The Sunday Leader editor, Lasantha Wickrematunge, was identified by the late journalist’s driver.

Last Wednesday (27), the suspect was made to participate in an identification parade held in the presence of the Mt. Lavinia Magistrate. The suspect was further remanded until August 3.

Lasantha Wickrematunge was assassinated on January 8, 2009, by four assailants who stopped him on his way to his office on Attidiya-Mt. Lavinia road, in a suburb of Sri Lankan capital and opened fire at him.

Injunction Order Against Joint Opposition’s Pada Yathra

The Joint Opposition Pada Yathra in Peradeniya. Image credits: dailynews.lk

Two injunction orders were issued against the Joint Opposition’s Pada Yathra, restricting it from entering Mawanella and Kandy. The orders were issued by the Kandy and Mawanella Magistrate Courts against the ‘pilgrimage’ which commenced yesterday (28) from Kandy.

The Pada Yathra was to be a token walk from Kandy to Colombo organised by the JO, protesting certain policies of the current government.

The Magistrate stated that the JO could commence their Pada Yathra from anywhere but Kandy. The JO was informed to start their Pada Yathra from the outskirts of the Kandy city instead of from within.

The injunction order was tabled by the police claiming that it might create unnecessary tension in Mawanella and Kandy where two promotional programmes of the United National Party had been organised for yesterday and today.

The walk, titled the ‘Jana Satana Pada Yathra’, was scheduled to commence from Kandy yesterday (28) and reach Colombo by August 1. The walk was organised by the JO, against the proposed constitutional amendments, among other concerns.

Another Large Narcotics Haul

The cocaine haul being examined by the police Image courtesy: adaderana.lk

A haul of cocaine worth over Rs. 4 billion was discovered by the Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) at a container yard in Piliyandala.

The haul of 274 kilogrammes of cocaine was nabbed on Thursday (21). It had been concealed in a container of sugar and was discovered on a tip-off received by the PNB.

According to reports, investigations revealed that the cocaine had been brought down from Brazil via Portugal.

This is the second consecutive cargo container imported from Brazil that concealed a large quantity of narcotics. Last month, police seized 25 kilogrammes of heroin from a cargo container containing sugar imported from Brazil.

Protest By Disabled Soldiers

The protest moving down Lotus Road, Colombo. Image credits: dailynews.lk

Last Monday (25) saw Lotus Road along the Fort Railway Station blocked due to a protest held by a group of disabled soldiers and ex-Army officers. They protested in front of the Railway Station over their current pension schemes.

The protest, which soon turned into a fast, ended the next day (26) after Defense Secretary Karunasena Hettiarachchi assured the protesters that President Maithripala Sirisena will provide viable solutions to their concerns.

International

Japan: 19 Killed In Knife Attack At Mental Care Facility

Journalists gather in front of the Tsukui Yamayuri En care centre. Image courtesy: bloomberg.com

A former employee of a care centre for the mentally disabled in Japan stabbed to death at least 19 people and injured over 25 last Tuesday (26).

The incident was deemed the country’s worst mass killing in decades.

International media outlets including BBC and Al Jazeera reported that the suspect had reportedly said he wanted people with disabilities to “disappear”.

The suspect was identified as 26-year-old Satoshi Uematsu who worked at the facility in Sagamihara until February 2016.

Germany: Munich Shootings Creates Need For Domestic Military

Armed police intervene during the Munich shootings. Image courtesy: timesrecordnews.com

The recent Munich Massacrewhere an 18-year-old shot dead nine people outside a McDonald’s has triggered several new security debates, including the decision to deploy armed troops on roads.

In addition to the strengthening of gun laws, Germany is now debating on deploying armed troops on the streets, an action that was not taken since Nazi rule.

At least nine people were killed and 16 others injured last Friday (22) in a shooting rampage at a busy shopping district in Munich. The shooter then shot himself on a side street near Olympia shopping mall.

Featured image: A police officer stands guard in front of Tsukui Yamayuri En care home on July 27 in Sagamihara, Japan. Image courtesy: Getty Images

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