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Suspicion instigated Research: Exhumation of Wickrematunge , Sri Lankan newspaper editor

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Lasantha Wickrematunge funeral banners. Wikimedia
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Colombo, September 27, 2016: The body of murdered Sri Lankan newspaper editor Lasantha Wickrematunge, who was popular for his investigative journalism, was exhumed on Tuesday to conduct a fresh probe into his killing in 2009.
Wickrematunge’s body was exhumed at a local burial ground in the presence of a magistrate and under tight security after investigators obtained court approval to exhume the body as suspicion arose over the exact manner in which he was killed, Xinhua news agency reported.
He was the founding editor of The Sunday Leader newspaper and popular for the stand he took on media freedom.

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Wickrematunge was believed to have been killed while on his way to the office for taking on the then government which was on the verge of defeating the Tamil Tiger rebels after 30 years of a civil war.
While in 2009 it was believed that Wickrematunge died of gunshot wounds, investigators now believe he may have died from injuries sustained after a sharp object pierced through his skull.
In a pre-written editorial which was published posthumously, Wickrematunge feared he would be killed for his work by the then government.

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The current editor of The Sunday Leader newspaper Easwaran Rutnam told Xinhua news agency that he was cautiously optimistic that justice will finally be served more than seven years after Wickrematunge’s death.
“The euphoria over the war victory in May 2009 saw the push for justice for Wickrematunge’s killing taking a back seat. However, the new government which took office following elections last year has shown the political will to investigate incidents like that of Wickrematunge’s killing so there is hope the investigation will move forward,” he said.
An army intelligence officer has already been arrested and is being questioned over the incident while a former top police officer was also questioned.
IANS
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  • Enakshi Roy Chowdhury

    Justice must be served to Lasantha Wikrematunje, one cannot be killed just like that, and who ever was behind this, that person should be behind bars

  • Anubhuti Gupta

    It is good that people in Sri Lanka still believe that justice will be served even after 7 years, Most would have given up. The murder of innocent should not go unpunished

  • Enakshi Roy Chowdhury

    Justice must be served to Lasantha Wikrematunje, one cannot be killed just like that, and who ever was behind this, that person should be behind bars

  • Anubhuti Gupta

    It is good that people in Sri Lanka still believe that justice will be served even after 7 years, Most would have given up. The murder of innocent should not go unpunished

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Upgrade of murder charge of the white nationalist, James Alex Fields Jr. in Virginia car killing

James Alex Field Jr. murder charge has been upgraded from second degree to first degree who has been accused of killing a 32 year old woman in Charlottesville, Virginia.

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FILE - A photo of Heather Heyer, who was killed during a white nationalist rally, sits on the ground at a memorial the day her life was celebrated at the Paramount Theater in Charlottesville, Virginia.
FILE - A photo of Heather Heyer, who was killed during a white nationalist rally, sits on the ground at a memorial the day her life was celebrated at the Paramount Theater in Charlottesville, Virginia.
  • James Allex Fields Jr., the white nationalist who murdered a woman in Virginia.
  • The murder charge has been upgraded for the accused
  • Second-degree murder changed to first-degree murder

US, December 14, 2017: A white nationalist accused of killing a 32-year-old woman when he plowed his car into a crowd of counterprotesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August was charged with first-degree murder Thursday, local media reported.

James Fields Jr., 20, appeared at Charlottesville District Court for a preliminary hearing, during which a previous charge of second-degree murder was changed to first-degree murder, local TV station WSET and others reported from the court.

James Alex Fields Jr., 20, is seen in a mugshot released by Charlottesville, Virginia, police department.
James Alex Fields Jr., 20, is seen in a mugshot released by Charlottesville, Virginia, police department.

Fields would face up to life in prison if convicted of first-degree murder, while second-degree murder carries a penalty of five to 40 years in prison, according to the Virginia penal code.

Court officials and the local district attorney were not immediately available for comment.

Ohio-native Fields is suspected of killing Heather Heyer and injuring 19 people.

The incident took place amid clashes between hundreds of white supremacists and counterprotesters. After hours of clashes, a sedan driving at high speed plowed into the crowd before reversing along the same street.

Charlottesville is home to the University of Virginia’s flagship campus.

Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe blamed neo-Nazis for sparking the unrest in the city, where rival groups fought pitched battles using rocks and pepper spray after far-right protesters converged to demonstrate against a plan to remove a statue of a Confederate war hero.

After the rally, Republican President Donald Trump said there were “very fine people” on both sides, drawing condemnation from some Republican leaders and praise from white supremacists. (VOA)