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Home > Tributes and Remembrances > Sri Lanka: Feminist and Human rights activist Sunila Abesekera passes (...)

Sri Lanka: Feminist and Human rights activist Sunila Abesekera passes away

9 September 2013

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Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka)

Sunila passes away

Monday, 09 September 2013 17:58

Civil society activist Sunila Abesekera passed away in Colombo a short while ago, family members said. Sunila Abeysekera is an award winning human rights campaigner.

She was born in 1952 (61) in Sri Lanka and has worked on women’s rights and human rights issues in Sri Lanka and in the South Asia region for over 20 years as an activist and scholar.

In 1994 she received an M.A. in Women and Development from the Institute of Social Studies in the Hague, Netherlands, and won that year’s award for the best research paper.

Secretary General of the UN Kofi Annan presented Abeysekera with a UN human rights award in 1999. She was also honoured for her work by the Human Rights Watch.

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Sunday Times (Sri Lanka)

Sunila, Lanka’s top UN human rights award winner, dies of cancer
Monday, 09 September 2013 19:02

Sri Lanka’s top UN Human Rights award winner Sunila Abeysekara died at a private hospital in Colombo on Monday afternoon after a long battle with cancer.
A founder of Sri Lanka’s feminist movement, Ms. Abeysekara was a leading socialist activist for minority rights, women’s, workers and peasants rights. Recently she was prominent on Lankan human rights issues at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. She was also a noted Sinhala folk and opera singer. Ms. Abeysekera, daughter of the late Charles Abeysekara, a noted human rights and social activist, founded Inform, a rights-based NGO. - Ends-

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[The following appeared on Facebook]

Women and Media Collective (WMC)

We at Women and Media Collective (WMC) are deeply saddened at the loss of Sunila Abeysekera, a leading human rights activist in Sri Lanka who was one of the founding members of our organization and an Honorary Director. She passed away today in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Rest in Peace Sunila. You will be greatly missed.

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T M Jayarathne & Sunila Abeysekara at Master කේමදාස රාවය
Music: Maestro Khemadasa
Lyrics: W Jayasiri

A Nimal Mendis Song Translated by Somi Sekerama & sung by Sunila Abeysekera for a production by Bernadeen Silva
From the sinhala Movie "Hansha Wilak" (1980)
http://youtu.be/jkDO3F-ORnQ