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Beyond Sri Lanka’s War Against Terror: The Struggle for Sri Lanka’s Democracy

 Saliya Pieris, Attorney-at-Law, Chairman CFPS School of Law, Colombo, Sri Lanka, 2012 Eisenhower Fellow

Chair: Charles HalliseyYehan Numata Senior Lecturer on Buddhist Literatures, Harvard Divinity School

This talk will explain how developments in Sri Lanka, including the authoritarian executive Presidential Constitution in 1978, the war with the Tamil Tigers and the failure of the Sri Lankan regime to find a political solution to the nation’s problems have all contributed toward the serious rule of law challenges faced by the country. Among these challenges are the issues of enforced disappearances, arbitrary arrests and detentions, cronyism, nepotism, suppression of the opposition and the free media, all of which have resulted in the breakdown of national institutions such as the legislature, the judiciary and the public service. What role should the government and the people of Sri Lanka, as well as the international community, play in order to establish strong rule of law in Sri Lanka.