List of places for preventive detention, or detention of people for the purpose of investigation, published by Inspector General of Police on 14 June 2000 with Gazette notification [LKA36079.E]

No mention of a list of places for preventive detention, or detention of people for the purpose of investigation, published by Inspector General of Police on 14 June 2000 could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate. The Medical Foundation for the Victims of Torture, based in London, wrote that they had no information on such a list (30 Nov. 2000).

However, according to a November 2000 Sri Lanka Monitor report "currently there are some 2,500 Tamil detainees under the Emergency regulations and the PTA [Prevention of Terrorism Act] in eight prisons, 346 police stations throughout the island and a few Army camps." In an undated entry from The World Factbook on Criminal Justice Systems, which includes the latest reference of 30 April 1994, there is the following listing of the number and types of prisons in Sri Lanka: 3 closed prisons for convicted prisoners, 14 remand prisons for offenders awaiting trial, 5 work camps, 2 open prison camps, 1 training school, 2 correctional centers for youthful offenders, 1 work release center, and 27 lockups. According to the 1989 edition of the

World Encyclopedia of Police Forces and Penal Systems

there are 14 major prisons, four open prison camps and two training schools (commonly abbreviated as TYSO) for youthful offenders. The Welikada Prison, the largest, holds near 2,500 inmates, about 23% of the total prison population. ...
The Department [of Prison] maintains an open-type correctional house for juvenile convicts at Wathapitiwela, called the Training School for Youthful Offenders. It is patterned after a residential school and divided into a number of houses, each house in the charge of a housemaster. There is another TYSO at Negombo, a closed-type school reserved for more troublesome juveniles requiring strict supervision.
The department also runs four prison camps. At Pallekelle, Anuradhapura, Kipay and Taldena, where facilities are provided for agricultural training (351).

The following are additional places of detention that were mentioned in the sources consulted by the Research Directorate: Welikade Jail and Kultara, described as "two of the country's main prisons" (Digital Freedom Network 11 July 2000); prisons in Kalutara, Negombo and Kandy, as well as Bambalapitiya police station (INFORM Dec. 1999); Bogambara Prison in Kandy (Human Rights Action Committee 9 Apr. 1999); Welikada Remand Prison (ibid. n.d.); "Kalutara prison, 25 miles south of Colombo" (Sri Lanka Monitor Jan. 2000; ibid. Oct. 2000; TamilNet 24 Jan. 1998); "Glass factory detention centre in Trincomalee" (ibid. 22 May 1998); Pesali detention centre (ibid.); a "rundown jail" or detention centre in Jaffna (The New York Times 11 Sept. 2000); "the notorious Joseph detention camp" (The Independent 26 June 2000); Eraperiyakulam camp (ibid.); "a torture chamber and illegal detention camp close to [Anuradhapura's] 2,000-year-old sacred Bo-tree" that Dawn reported was operative in the late 1980s (27 July 2000); KKS detention centre (Kankesanthurai) (TamilNet 29 Oct. 1998; ibid. 16 Oct. 1998; ibid. 12 Nov. 1998; ibid. 26 Nov. 1998). TamilNet reported that the KKS "detention camp ... is run by the Sri Lanka Army and is located in the Palaly-KKS military complex" (9 May 1998) and described it as a "detention centre for terrorist suspects" (3 Feb. 1999).

Sri Lanka Monitor refers to persons "detained in Colombo's Kotahena suberb" (Apr. 2000) and at "a rehabilitation centre in Bindunawewa, two miles north-east of Bandarawela" that is run by the National Youth Services Council (Oct. 2000). Other sources identify a centre at Bandarawela that is described as both a detention centre and a rehabilitation centre (AFP 29 Oct. 2000a; ibid. 29 Oct. 2000b). One AFP article quoted a police officer as identifying the centre as "BanD'rcwela" (ibid.). Daily News referred to it as a "Detention Camp at Bindunuwewa, Bandarawela" that houses LTTE detainees (26 Oct. 2000), while The Island described it as a rehabilitation camp for LTTE suspects (26 Oct. 2000). India Express described it as a rehabilitation camp "at Binduvewa near Bandravela" that "is used as a center to reform surrendered militants, most of whom were child 'soldiers' with the LTTE" (25 Oct. 2000). TamilNet referred to a "Bindhunuveva rehabilitation centre in Badarawalla" (9 May 1998).

In an article about the movement of Tamil prisoners from Batticaloa jail to Kalutara prison TamilNet refers to "the former military prison at Boosa about 98 kilometres south of Colombo" (24 Jan. 1998). It is unclear from the report whether Kalutara prison is the former Boosa military detention centre that held "Tamil political prisoners ... between 1984 and 1987 (ibid.). Sri Lanka Monitor referred to "Tamil detainees in Kalutara and Boossa detention centre in Galle, 65 miles south of Colombo" (Nov. 2000).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


Agence France Presse (AFP). 29 October 2000a. "Sri Lanka Fears Bloodshed After Prison Slaughter, Curfew in Town." (FBIS-NES-2000-1029 29 Oct. 2000/WNC)

_____. 29 October 2000b. 29 October 2000b. "Inter-Communal Violence Erupts in Central Sri Lanka, Curfew Extended." (FBIS-NES-2000-1029 29 Oct. 2000/WNC)

Daily News [Colombo]. 26 October 2000. Ranil Wijayapala. "25 Killed in Attack on Detention Camp: President Condemns Incident." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

Dawn [Karachi]. 27 July 2000. Luke Harding. "Sri Lankan General Accused of Torture." [Accessed 27 July 2000]

Digital Freedom Network, Newark, N.J. 11 July 2000. Andrew Wasley. "Victims of Sri Lanka's Civil War." [Accessed 5 Dec. 2000]

Human Rights Action Committee, Colombo. 9 April 1999. "Torture in Detention." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. n.d. "Lives Behind Bars: Political Prisoners in Sri Lanka." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

The Independent [London]. Ian Burrell. "Tamil Asylum Seekers Show Signs of Systematic Medieval-Style Torture." (NEXIS)

India Express [Berkeley, CA]. 25 October 2000. "Probe Ordered into Lanka Camp Attack, Toll Rises to 24." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

The Island [Colombo]. 26 October 2000. Norman Palihawadana. "Residents Storm Rehabilitation Camp in Bandarawela; Thirteen Tiger Suspects Killed, Eighteen Injured." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

Medical Foundation for the Victims of Torture, London, U.K. 30 November 2000. Correspondence.

The New York Times. 11 September 2000. Celia W. Dugger. "Rebels Without a Childhood in Sri Lanka War." (NEXIS)

Sri Lanka Information Monitor (INFORM) [Colombo]. June 1999. Situation Report: December 1999. [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

Sri Lanka Monitor [London]. November 2000. "Prison Fear." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

_____. October 2000. "Massacre in the Hills." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

_____. April 2000. "Student Torture." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

_____. January 2000. "Two Detainees Killed." [Accessed 14 Dec. 2000]

TamilNet, Gaithersberg, MD. 3 February 1999. "Sri Lankan Army Detains Indian Fishermen." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 26 November 1998. "Jaffna Detainees Taken to Anuradhapura." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 12 November 1998. "Army Interrogates Teachers." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 29 October 1998. "Jaffna Priest Detained." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 16 October 1998. "News in Brief." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 22 May 1998. "Refugees Protest Against Detention." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 9 May 1998. "Jaffna Detainees Held Elsewhere." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

_____. 24 January 1998. "Batticaloa Prisoners Transferred to Kalutara." [Accessed 4 Dec. 2000]

U.S. Department of Justice, Washington. n.d.. N.H.A. Karunaratne. World Factbook of Criminal Justice Systems. [Accessed 21 June 2000]

World Encyclopedia of Police Forces and Penal Systems. 1989. Edited by George Thomas Kurian. New York: Facts on File Publications.

Additional Sources Consulted

IRB databases



World News Connection (WNC)

Unsuccessful attempts to contact five non-documentary sources

Internet sites including:

Centre for Policy Alternatives

Human Rights Action Committee - Sri Lanka

Medical Foundation for the Care of Victims of Torture

The Official Government Website of Sri Lanka

Society for Peace, Unity and Human Rights for Sri Lanka (SPUR)

Sri Lanka Department of Information

Sri Lanka Peace Net (INFORM/MIRJE)

Sri Lanka Police

The Sri Lanka Project (British Refugee Council)