Jun 11, 2021

BASL responds to police media release on fake news

The Bar Association of Sri Lanka (BASL) has expressed its apprehension with regard to the police and other members of the executive being allowed to decide on what falls into the category of ‘fake news’, based on their own their own subjective decisions, resulting in the arrest and detention of persons.
 
In a statement today (11), the BASL stated, 
 
Given that the prospect of being arrested for expressing harsh criticism or dissent can have a chilling effect that could erode the citizens’ freedom to openly share critical views or freely comment on important matters as members/stakeholders of society, utmost care and restraint should be exercised in causing the arrest of any person for an offence relating to alleged ‘fake news’ prior to full investigation of any complaint, the statement adds.
 
The full statement is as follows :

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