IUSF protest march attacked with tear gas and water cannons

00:00 Jan 16 2023 United Nations Head Office

On 16th January, Inter-University Student Federation (IUSF) organized a protest demanding the release of its leader Wasantha Mudalige, repeal Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and reduce the prices of electricity, gas, and fuel. Though the protest was initially planned to start at the Lipton Circle in Colombo, it was started near the United Nations Head office in Colombo. Media reported that a large number of Police personnel including riot control Police officers were stationed at the Lipton Circle before the protest began. For around half an hour, a demonstration was held in front of the UN office, then protesters marched along the Galle Road towards Colpetty junction located around two kilometres away from the Galleface Green public park that was recently well known for having the anti-government Aragalaya movement’s occupy protest site in Colombo. While the protesters were reaching the Colpetty Junction, a large force of Sri Lanka Police, Riot Police, and the Water Cannon trucks moved at them from Galle Face side and announced the court order using loudspeakers, saying that they are not allowed to enter the Galleface Green public park. Although the protesters then moved to the Marine Drive, the neighbouring seaside road, the Police again diverted them back to the Galle Road and attacked them with tear gas and water cannon at the Colpetty junction, and dispersed the protest.
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