Concern over death threats to Sri Lanka TV host

COLOMBO, Nov 19, 2006 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s main media rights group Sunday expressed concern over a death threat against a Tamil television host after a show in which he discussed the assassination of a Tamil legislator. The Free Media Movement said television talk show host J. Sri Ranga was told of the death threat after he discussed the slaying of MP Nadarajah Raviraj this month on his popular program.

“This is not the first instance where he has faced a serious death threat,” the media group said in a statement.

“Complaints made to relevant authorities have to date elicited no response.”

The group “views this situation as extremely disappointing and disturbing, especially in light of the most recent credible death threat to his life.”

Ranga, who is currently in India, said he was told about the threat by the police, but it was not clear from where the threat originated.

In August, a Tamil radio journalist was abducted by unidentified gunmen and freed a day later following intense diplomatic pressure on the authorities, media rights activists said.

There has been a spate of attacks against journalists, newspapers and even newspaper delivery boys in Sri Lanka as part of a bitter ethnic wa