|Tamil Canadian lawmaker claims danger in Sri Lanka
A Sri Lanka-born Tamil lawmaker from Canada said she was intimidated and warned she could be deported while visiting her birthplace of Jaffna in the north of Sri Lanka.
Rathika Sitsabaiesan, was subjected to “political intimidation'' and warned of possible arrest and deportation, according to a statement on her New Democratic Party's website.
“My experiences since arriving in Sri Lanka are a reminder that defending principles of human rights is not easy,'' she said in the statement, adding: “I was warned I could be subject to arrest and deportation,.’’
The statement did not say who had intimidated her, but added that Sri Lankan authorities had informed the Canadian High Commission in Colombo that there was no order to arrest her.
However, Tamilnet.com, a group sympathetic to the vanquished Tamil terrorist group the Tamil Tigers, said she was virtually under house arrest at her hotel in Jaffna on Tuesday, a claim denied by police.
“We have not had anything to do with her, but I think she may be trying to get arrested hoping it will bring her more votes back in Canada,'' police spokesman Ajith Rohana told AFP. “We are not going to fall into that trap.’
Sitsabaiesan, 32, said she look forward to “learning more about the country of my birth.’’
There was no immediate comment from the Canadian High Commission.
Sitsabaiesan, who immigrated to Canada with her family when she was five years old, was elected to the House of Commons in 2011.