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Editorial - Media Terrorism

6 June 2012 06:30 pm - 1     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The manner in which its journalists reported on the wartime Sri Lanka, Channel-4 has long made clear as to where its journalistic ethics lay. The British-based Television channel has deliberately forgotten that instigating unrest and fuelling disharmony are not the duties a responsible media institution should be fulfilling. The only justification one can provide in its defence is that, Channel-4, funded and aided by the pro-LTTE sects of the diaspora, cannot afford to be independent nor can it care much about the ethics.

It is in this scenario that one of its directors, Stuart Cosgrove, on Sunday, entered Sri Lanka together with his wife, despite being blacklisted. The wife, Shirani Sabaratnam, an editor and a presenter of Channel-4, had been a former member of the LTTE. Further questioning revealed Ms. Sabaratnam had used different passports to gain entry to Sri Lanka during the war and afterwards. However, they were later deported by the Sri Lankan law enforcement authorities (much to the disappointment of the Diaspora who may be considering the funding of another documentary).

Clearly, whatever brought Mr. & Mrs. Cosgrove to Sri Lanka, it was by no means a sightseeing tour.



While the majority of the citizenry are in accordance with the move to deport them back to Great Britain, some may question as to why the government would not grant them permission to tour in the North to witness the prevailing conditions. True enough, it may not be as rosy as the picture painted by the state-owned media. Those are the people, whose agonies cannot be consoled with highways and concrete bridges. After three years of nominal peace, in a land devoid of terrorism, they are still waiting to taste real harmony. Theirs is a wish to attain the status of an equal-citizen. Yet, the question as to whether Channel-4  can  be constructive in its reporting and lay emphasis on making life easier for them, rather than misusing their tears as Tiger propaganda material, remains to be answered. Given its history of twisting facts and converting Tigers into helpless rabbits to suit its scripts, it is doubtful that Channel-4 will ever keep its word of assurance, if it is forced to give any.

In fact, it is Channel-4 itself that compelled the Sri Lankan government to shut its doors against the latter, due to its extreme bias if not one-sided reporting. One does not have to look far for evidence. In its recent documentary that glorified the death of slain LTTE leader, Prabhakaran’s youngest son, all the other children who died in bomb explosions and mass-killings in the East were conveniently left out.

It is this Channel-4 that attempts to pick pieces to fit into its newest pre-written script. And with the magnitude of the damage already caused, Sri Lanka has very little dignity to safeguard.
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  Comments - 1

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  • Hussain Thursday, 07 June 2012 05:32 AM

    Agree totally with this editorial. Most other countries would have charged them on various grounds. Entering a country when one is debarred or blacklisted. Also using false names and multiple passports which is ilegal. Should have incarcerated both of them at Welikada for a few days, then they would really have something to write about when they get back to the UK.
    [The picture is incorrect. She is colored not white.]


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