Matale mass grave

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Matale mass grave is the mass burial of people suspected to have been killed extrajudically during the second JVP uprising during counter insurgency operations by the Sri Lankan Army. Sri Lankan forensic archaeologist led by Raj Somadeva who examined the site said that it was not due to epidemic or any natural causes and a parallel investigation done by a Judicial Medical Officer Ajith Jayasena said that it was not a regular burial site and both concluded that remains belonged to the period 1986-1990.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8]


Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna staged an armed uprising after the signing of the Indo-Sri Lankan Accord and the presence of the IPKF in Sri Lanka which was unpopular in Sri Lanka.This uprising was put down brutally by the government in which thousands of youths were killed.The remains of over 150 people was discovered when a new building was being built in the Matale Base Hospital. Matale was one of the areas JVP insurgency was very active. Gotabhaya Rajapaksa was the commanding officer of the Sri Lankan Army in Matale from May 1989 and left for USA in Jan 1990 by which the insurgency was crushed.[9][10][11][12]


Sri Lankan Government has ordered a probe by a presidential commission but it has been questioned whether the commission will achieve anything as previous commissions have achieved little and some of those who held responsible positions in Matale then are in influential positions including the then Military Coordinating Officer of Matale.[13] [14] [15]

See also


  1. ^ "Matale mass grave traced to 1987-89". Island. January 21, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-09.
  2. ^ "JVP says Matale mass grave has remains of 200 torture victims". Island. February 5, 201. Retrieved 2013-04-09. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ "Sri Lanka Matale mass grave 'dates from late 1980s'". BBC. 28 March 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-09.
  4. ^ "Leading archaeologist calls for accountability on Matale mass grave". JDS. 30 March 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-09.
  5. ^ Anna Niestat (2008). Recurring Nightmare: State Responsibility for "disappearances" and Abductions in Sri Lanka. Human Rights Watch. pp. 19–. GGKEY:UXWF05XJ0X5. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  6. ^ "Murdered then tossed into a mass grave: Sri Lanka unearths 150 decades-old skeletons and promises to uncover the truth". 9 April 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  7. ^ "Sri Lanka mass grave dates to Marxist rebellion, says judge". The Guardian. 28 March 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  8. ^ "Sri Lanka Matale 'mass grave could be a crime site'". BBC. 14 December 2012. Retrieved 2013-04-11.
  9. ^ Metta Spencer (1998). Separatism: democracy and disintegration. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 263–. ISBN 978-0-8476-8585-1. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  10. ^ Margaret Lock; Mark Nichter (20 May 2004). New Horizons in Medical Anthropology: Essays in Honour of Charles Leslie. Routledge. pp. 287–. ISBN 978-0-203-39851-7. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
  11. ^ "Rajapaksa Govt Haunted By Ghosts From The Past". The Sunday Leader. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  12. ^ "Matale Mass Grave". April 3, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  13. ^ "Is this presidential commission on Matale mass grave worth its salt?". Ceylon Today. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  14. ^ "Sri Lanka to probe mass grave with more than 150 dead". / Apr 7, 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
  15. ^ "Gotabaya the prime suspect in Matale mass killings now begins his evidence killing operations –Orders destruction of police records". 8 April 2013. Retrieved 2013-04-10.
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