Jan 28, Colombo: Opposition political parties in Sri Lanka together with trade unions and civil society organizations held a massive protest rally in the capital Colombo today to show solidarity against the government.
Thousands of protesters carrying placards and shouting slogans marched from three different locations in the city - Lipton Circus, Darley Road and Slave Island- and converged to the Hyde Park where the rally was held this evening.
Main opposition United National Party (UNP), trade unions affiliated to the Marxist party Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), former Army Commander Sarath Fonseka's Democratic Party (DP) and political parties in Vipakshaya Virodhaya movement participated in the protest.
The rally has been organized to mobilize people against the government's oppression, lawlessness and the need to restore people's rights in the country.
According to the organizer, the protest organized by the Professional and Civil Society Collective, is to stand against state oppression, social degradation and corruption and push for the abolition of the executive presidency.
The protests were also part of the Black January organized by the media associations against state suppression and the right to freedom of expression.
The month of January has been labeled as a Black month for media freedom with the killing of Sunday Leader editor Lasantha Wickrematunga on January 08, 2009 and setting fire to the Sirasa media institute on January 06, 2008 in addition to the disappearance of Prageeth Eknaligoda on January 24, 2010 and an attack on Uthayan newspaper.