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* Sri Lanka Army to take stern disciplinary action on soldiers in leaked video
Sat, Mar 22, 2014, 08:08 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Mar 22, Colombo: The Sri Lanka army on Saturday ordered the military police to arrest the personnel who produced a video documentary on rigorous military training sessions for woman recruits and released to the Internet.

The Army said the Sri Lanka Corps of Military Police (SLCMP), investigating into the release of the video on You Tube found that the video has been produced by a few "interested elements" to disrepute the Army.

The SLCMP investigations had found that the video, which surfaced earlier this month on the internet, has been produced by a group of army personnel in around October 2012.

The Army said on being informed on 4 March 2013, the Army Headquarters directed the SLCMP to launch an immediate investigation into the video documentary after the Commander of the Army Lieutenant General Daya Ratnayake, brought the matter to the notice of the SLCMP.

The video shows female recruits being harassed and assaulted with sticks during a training session by both male and female soldiers.

Reportedly the incident in the video has taken place in a training camp in Anuradhapura and the female soldiers in the video were being punished by the instructors for indiscipline.

According to a preliminary report the instructors have punished the recruits for an act in violation of military discipline. However, the method adopted is not in accordance with standard procedures prescribed for such corrective punitive actions.

"It has been found that the individuals who carried out this excessive action had over stepped their mandate and acted in their own volition," the Military said in a statement.

"Being disciplined organizations the Armies all over the world have standing procedures when it comes to disciplining the soldiers especially during formative period of initial training. Such actions are designed as corrective measures and have to be authorized by appropriate authorities. In this instance no such authorization had been obtained. Further, the punitive methods employed by the instructors were not in line with prescribed procedures."

"In order to mould balanced, physically fit and thoroughly disciplined soldiers, Sri Lanka Army with the able guidance and supervision of trained instructors, continues its training programs, based on well-structured comprehensive training modules, enabling those soldiers to overcome any current and future challenges through meticulously programmed such training sessions," the Army said.

Taking a stern view on those trying to tarnish and discredit the Army by producing such stage-managed harassment and uncivilized treatment on woman soldiers under training, Commander of the Army, has assured that soon after SLCMP investigations, all those involved in this incident would be brought to justice and dealt with severely as per provisions of the Army Act, irrespective of their ranks.

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