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Govt. condemns expulsion of journalists from S.Lanka

[AFP, Sunday, 10 May 2009 19:44 No Comment]

The Foreign Office in London said Sunday it was "deeply disappointing" that a ITN news team was expelled from Sri Lanka after reporting on alleged poor treatment of Tamils in camps there.


Channel 4 correspondent Nick Paton-Walsh, producer Bessie Du and cameraman Matt Jasper were arrested and told to get out of Sri Lanka, said ITN — which produces Channel 4′s news bulletins — on Saturday. They left Sunday.


In a statement, the Foreign Office said: "This is a deeply disappointing decision when the case for more transparency, not less, is overwhelming."


The Sri Lankan government objected to a piece broadcast on May 5 filmed at a camp in the city of Vavuniya containing allegations of sexual abuse plus food and water shortages, all of which are denied by Colombo.


Sri Lanka’s leaders believe the military is about to defeat the Tamil Tiger rebels after 37 years of conflict. Around 200,000 Tamils are being held in state-run camps after fleeing the fighting.

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