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Tangalle victim 'raped' - AHRC
Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) says the companion of the murdered British tourist Kuram Shaikah Zaman was sexually assaulted after the brutal attack on the couple. Russian national Victoria Alexandrovna, 23, is being treated in Karapitiya hospital, Galle at the intensive care unit.

Investigations not conclusive
Police investigations continue

Chairman of the Tangalle Pradeshiya Sabha, Sampath Chandra Pushpa Vidanapathirana, was arrested as the main suspect of the assault and murder of the Red Cross employee on Christmas eve in Tangalle.

Found naked

"After the attack Victoria was found naked by the time the police arrived to investigate. According to an eye witness she was raped even as she lay bleeding from the head wound". The chairman of the AHRC Basil Fernando told the BBC Sinhala Service.

The AHRC says the eye witnesses who gave statements are now being threatened and are expressing concern for their own safety.

"Meanwhile several journalists who have reported the incident have also received death threats and reported the matter to their media agencies", says the AHRC.

Not conclusive

"A government spokesman's first reaction to the media was to deny the rape. This is the usual pattern of government spokesmen who tried to defend government politicians even when they are involved in serious crimes". Fernando told the BBC.

However the police spokesman says the evidence about a sexual assault is not conclusive as the final medical reports are yet to be received.

"The final medical reports on the bodily fluids taken from the alleged victim and the suspects will be submitted in court on the 6th of January", Police spokesman SP Ajith Rohana told the BBC Sinhala Service.

victim moved from hospital

After initial medical treatment at Karapitiya National Hospital, Victoria Alexandrovna was transferred to Lanka private hospital in Colombo.

All her medical expenses are paid by the government of Sri Lanka, Deputy Minister Lakshman Yapa Abeywardhana told the BBC Sinhala Service on Thursday.

 The ICRC has no further details on the specific circumstances under which Mr. Shaikh was killed

“A criminal investigation was launched by the concerned local authorities to follow-up on the circumstances of the incident”. Spokesman for the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) told the BBC Sinhala Service.

“The ICRC has no further details on the specific circumstances under which Mr. Shaikh was killed. The ICRC is following-up on the matter with the concerned authorities”. Christian Cardon Media and Public Relation officer - South Asia region for the ICRC, in Geneva said.

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