Organisational structure

The Campaign is entirely non-profit and independent of all groupings inside and outside Sri Lanka. It is run by the Board of Directors assisted by a group of advisors. The Campaign is supported by a dedicated group of volunteers, who are coordinated by the Campaign Director.  All board members and advisors are unpaid and all support the Campaign in their personal capacities to maintain its independence.

You can find out more about how we are funded by looking at our most recent accounts.

Board of Directors

The Campaign’s decision-making body is its Board of Directors. The Board decides on the Campaign’s organisational structure, overall objectives, and programme of work. The Campaign Director is an ex-officio member of the board but does not have a vote.

The current board members are:

  • Charu Lata Hogg (Chair)
  • Ingrid Massage
  • Angela Seay (Company Secretary)

Volunteers

The Campaign relies on a dedicated team of unpaid volunteers, drawn from a variety of ethnic and professional backgrounds. Our volunteers carry out a range of roles, including undertaking research, contributing articles, and fundraising.

Interested in getting involved? Contact us today.

 

Staff

  • Melissa Dring (Campaign Director)

Advisory Group

The Campaign is supported by a group of advisors. These influential figures come from all walks of life and regions of the world and support the Campaign’s three main objectives: to achieve genuine reconciliation based on accountability for violations of international law, to build respect for human rights and the rule of law, and to support efforts within Sri Lankan civil society to promote a just and lasting peace.  

Staff

Melissa Dring

Melissa Dring

Campaign Director

Sri Lanka’s drawn out civil war has left deep scars that are yet to be addressed. Attention and scrutiny from the international community are needed now more than ever to ensure justice, accountability, and the creation of a lasting, positive peace for all of Sri Lanka’s citizens.

Melissa Dring - Full Biography
is the Campaign Director of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice.

She holds an MSc in Violence, Conflict, and Development from SOAS, University of London where she focused on ethno-national, identity-based conflicts and war to peace transitions. She also works as a policy and advocacy consultant. Before joining the campaign, Melissa worked on consumer protection policy at the Chartered Trading Standards Institute.

The Board of Directors

Charu Lata Hogg

Charu Lata Hogg

Chair of the Sri Lanka Campaign

“For far too long truth, justice and accountability has been denied to all Sri Lankans. The country now faces a tremendous opportunity to remedy the past, strengthen its institutions and transform itself into a rights-respecting, democratic nation where all its people live together as equal citizens. All of us who have observed and critiqued this process now need to become more, not less involved, in ensuring that real reconciliation and peace can be achieved.”

Charu Lata Hogg - Full Biography

is the Chair of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice and Policy & Advocacy Director with Child Soldiers International and Associate Fellow in the Asia Program at Chatham House.

Prior to this she was the South Asia researcher for Human Rights Watch leading the organisation’s work on Sri Lanka between 2007-2009. She has worked as an international journalist in India and Sri Lanka for 12 years, writing for The Times of India, Indian Express, India Today, Outlook, Far Eastern Economic Review, BBC and others, as well as undertaking consultancies for numerous international organisations. She has conducted in-depth research on the issue of sexual violence in Sri Lanka and provided expert evidence to the UK Upper Tribunal on the Country Guidance case on Sri Lanka in 2013. She is a graduate of Hindu College, University of Delhi and receive her post graduate degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Ingrid Massage

Ingrid Massage

Board Member

“Having been involved with human rights work on Sri Lanka for many years (from around 1986 to 2003), it is wonderful to go back to that. To do it in an organisation that is clearly focused on impunity and with a good reputation for impartiality is a big bonus.”

Ingrid Massage - Full Biography
is a retired human rights policy advisor. She was born in Brussels, Belgium and studied criminology and economics at the Catholic University of Leuven.  She worked for Amnesty International from 1985 to late 2019. The majority of her time, she worked on South Asia, including on Sri Lanka Bhutan and Nepal. In 2005 – 2006, Ingrid moved to Nepal, where she worked as Deputy Chief of the Protection Division in the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, returning to London to undertake conflict studies at King’s College. She has undertaken work for Advocacy Forum – Nepal, particularly researching issues of impunity. In 2009 – 2016, she was involved in putting together a dossier for the prosecution on charges of torture of Nepal army colonel, Kumar Lama, in the United Kingdom.

During her years at Amnesty International, Ingrid was involved in detailed research on human rights.  She undertook extensive lobbying of governments and institutions. Her last part-time post at Amnesty International was as a senior research policy advisor, focused on delivering human rights training to researchers and campaigners around the world.

Angela Seay

Angela Seay

Board Member

“I value the Campaign’s non-partisan nature and its commitment to human rights and hope that the example set by this campaign can serve other small organisations with similar goals of reconciliation and accountability for vulnerable countries.”

Angela Seay - Full Biography
is a trustee of the Polden-Puckham Charitable Trust, Chair of Trustees with Britdoc Charitable Foundation and a freelance consultant. She has a background in grant making, policy planning, strategic development, and management in public health. She has worked with the David and Elaine Potter Foundation, International Crisis Group, the Carter Centre of Emory University; and several Federal agencies, including the Centres for Disease Control (CDC).

Advisory Group

Sharry Aiken

Sharry Aiken

Advisor

“As a Canadian and the parent of two children with mixed Tamil/Jewish heritage, I feel a special responsibility to document the ongoing human rights catastrophe in Sri Lanka and contribute to efforts aimed at accountability and ending impunity.”

Sharry Aiken - Full Biography
is an associate professor in the faculty of law at Queen’s University where she teaches international refugee law, international human rights law and other public law courses. A past president of the Canadian Council for Refugees, Prof. Aiken currently serves as co-chair of the CCR’s Legal Affairs Committee and vice-chair of the board of directors of the Canadian Centre for International Justice Prof. Aiken travelled to Sri Lanka as a young adult and experienced the country as a fairly typical backpacker. However, many years later, her refugee law practice brought her into contact with dozens of asylum seekers from Sri Lanka, affording a very different window into the country and its problems. More recently, as an academic, Prof. Aiken has been researching the causes and consequences of asylum flows from its Tamil refugee diaspora.

Nirmanusan Balasundaram

Nirmanusan Balasundaram

Advisor

“Since ‘Independence’ consecutive governments have targeted the Tamil nation in the island of Sri Lanka to eliminate their identity. In the peak of this process destructive mechanisms had been intensified by the present regime, which has already been accused of mass atrocities including genocide against the Tamil nation. In Sri Lanka, today exists a war by other means rather than a post-conflict situation.”

Nirmanusan Balasundaram - Full Biography
is an independent journalist and human rights defender. Growing up in the war torn region of Sri Lanka, Nirmanusan has been witness to the horrendous consequences of war, with these experiences and direct knowledge providing him the ability to accurately express to the world the ground reality. He holds an MA in Peace and Conflict Studies. He has worked for the Berghof Foundation for Conflict Studies in Sri Lanka, and later worked as an independent consultant for Berghof Peace Support, Berlin, Germany. As an international election observer attached to the Asian Network for Free Elections (ANFREL) Nirmanusan observed the first election held in Aceh, Indonesia in December 2006, after the Helsinki Agreement was signed between the Gerakan Aceh Merdeka (GAM) and the Indonesian Government. In 2007 he was honored by the Universal Peace Federation of Germany with the “Ambassador for Peace” award. Nirmanusan’s writings in English can be read on his blog www.nirmanusan.blogspot.com

Lakhdar Brahimi

Lakhdar Brahimi

Advisor

“I respect and admire much of what Sri Lanka has done and represent in the Third World and the Non Aligned Movement. Their Government won the war against the LTTE and that is good. They now urgently need to win the peace on behalf and for the benefit of all the people of Sri Lanka. To that end, international support and cooperation should be sought, not resisted.”

Lakhdar Brahimi - Full Biography

is former Foreign Minister of Algeria, Ambassador and international diplomat. Negotiated the end of civil war in Lebanon on behalf of the League of Arab States; led several UN Peace Operations, notably in South Africa, Haiti, Afghanistan , Iraq . Chaired the Independent Commission set up in 2000 by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan which produced a report on UN Peace Operations endorsed by the Millennium Summit and widely known as “The Brahimi Report”.

Member of “The Elders” & the Global Leadership Forum; Governing Board, SIPRI; Board of Trustees, International Crisis Group and Global Humanitarian Forum.

Fred Carver

Fred Carver

Advisor

“Sri Lanka is heading towards an avoidable catastrophe. If we can persuade the Government of Sri Lanka in time that peace will only last if it is built upon a foundation of justice and respect for human rights then there is no reason why Sri Lanka cannot put ethnic violence and division firmly in its past. But the path that the Government of Sri Lanka is walking leads to totalitarianism, and will inevitably lead back to war.”

 

Fred Carver - Full Biography
was the first Campaign Director of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice.

Before that he had a career in electoral campaigning and local government. He came to the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice after a period spent studying the politics of South Asia and writing articles, both on statebuilding and human rights in a South Asian context and issues of accountability and democracy more widely. Before starting with the Sri Lanka Campaign he spent time in Sri Lanka talking to victims of torture and arbitrary detention and their families.

Basil Fernando

Basil Fernando

Advisor

“I wish to underline, that what I see in Sri Lanka is a total crisis of democracy, rule of law and human rights affecting ALL not just minorities only”

 

Basil Fernando - Full Biography
is the Executive Director of the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) and the Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC).

 

He has been active in human rights and social action issues continuously from his youth years. He graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Ceylon, Colombo, Sri Lanka in 1972 and practiced law from 1980 to 1989 at the Supreme Court of Sri Lanka with an emphasis in Criminal Law, Employment Law and Human Rights Law.

He was an Appeals Counsel for Vietnamese refugees in Hong Kong, for a project sponsored by the United Nation High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) from 1989 to 1992. From 1992 to 1993, he was a Senior United Nations Human Rights Officer-in-Charge of the Investigation Unit in Cambodia under the UN Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). He was the Officer-in-Charge and the Chief of the Legal Assistance at the Cambodia Office of United Nations Center for Human Rights from 1993 to 1994. He has been the Executive Director of the AHRC and ALRC from 1994 up to the present.

He is the author and editor of several books on Human Rights related issues and legal reform issues, and has contributed many articles to academic journals and the media. He is the Chief Editor Human Rights SOLIDARITY and Editor of Article 2.

Mr. Fernando has conducted nearly 100 workshops and consultations on Reconciliation issues as well as on diverse aspects of Human Rights and Legal Reform and he was awarded the Kuwanju (Korea) Human Rights prize for 2001.

Charles Glass

Charles Glass

Advisor

“No one should stand by while human beings are herded into camps, those who expose their plight are murdered, those who try to help them are expelled and those who claim to believe in justice remain silent.”

 

Charles Glass - Full Biography

is an Author, journalist, and broadcaster specialising in the Middle East. Charles writes regularly for The Spectator, was ABC News chief Middle East correspondent from 1983-93, and has worked as a correspondent for Newsweek and The Observer. His work has appeared in newspapers and magazines, and on television networks, all over the world.

Glass himself made headlines in 1987, when he was taken hostage for 62 days in Lebanon by Hezbollah, the Shi’ite Muslim group, and is the only Western hostage in Lebanon known to have escaped, which he describes in his book, Tribes with Flags. In 1988, he exposed Saddam Hussein’s then-secret biological weapons program. The U.S. government rejected Glass’s claims, until Iraq invaded Kuwait in 1990. One year later, he went alone with a hidden camera to Indonesian-occupied East Timor and, despite government restrictions, filmed and filed a report on repression and torture. This report influenced a U.S. Senate committee to vote to suspend U.S. military aid to Indonesia. He has covered wars in the Middle East, Eritrea, Rhodesia, Somalia, Iraq and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

He has lectured regularly on the Middle East, American foreign policy, world journalism and human rights in the United States and Britain.

Bruce Haigh

Bruce Haigh

Advisor

“If you see the justice of the Tamil quest for equality in Sri Lanka and do nothing about it you stand  condemned.”

 

 

Bruce Haigh - Full Biography
is a former Australian diplomat.He served in South Africa from 1976/79 where he initiated Australian Embassy contact with members of the black South African resistance, including the Black Consciousness Movement. Included amongst the friends he made at this time were Steve Biko and Dr. Mamphela Ramphele. Bruce helped a number of political activists escape South Africa including banned newspaper editor, Donald Woods, and his role in this escape was portrayed in the film, “Cry Freedom” produced by Richard Attenborough.

 

Bruce has also worked in the Australian Embassy in Saudi Arabia (1982/84), was Director of the Indonesia Section (1984/86), worked in Islamabad (1986/88) when he travelled to Afghanistan to report on the war and other aspects of the Soviet occupation. In 1994, he was Deputy High Commissioner at the Australian High Commission, Colombo.

Bruce was instrumental in helping to set up the Ifa Lethu Foundation which locates, repatriates and curates South African works of art taken out of the country during the years of apartheid. He now provides regular political analysis on international and domestic issues for radio and television, conferences and writes for a number of newspapers.

Carolyn Hayman OBE

Carolyn Hayman OBE

Advisor

“I have been shocked to see friends from Sri Lanka become increasingly intimidated and silenced over the last few years. The whole world should be concerned that the seeds of the next conflict are being sown right now.”

 

 

Carolyn Hayman - Full Biography

is a specialist in conflict resolution and peace-making and has direct experience of building coalitions for peace in Sudan.  After a brief career in the UK civil service, Carolyn has focused on supporting innovation and startups in the private and not for profit sector. She was a Board member of the Commonwealth Development Corporation from 1994 to 1999, is a former member of the Quaker UN Office (Geneva) Committee, and received an OBE in 2003.

Antony Loewenstein

Antony Loewenstein

Advisor

“The Tamil struggle for justice and self-determination is a cause that should be supported by all citizens of good faith. Like the disenfranchised Palestinians, Tamil stories should resonate around the world.”

Antony Loewenstein - Full Biography

is an independent freelance journalist, author and blogger.He has written for many Australian and international newspapers, including the Guardian, Washington Post, Haaretz and the Nation, and appears regularly around the world on radio, TV (includingDemocracy Now!), in public, writer’s festivals (in Australia and overseas) and at universities (including Harvard) discussing current affairs, politics and media.

Antony contributed a major chapter to 2004’s Australian best-seller, Not Happy, John! on the Middle East. His best-selling book on the Israel/Palestine conflict, My Israel Question, was short-listed for the 2007 New South Wales Premier’s Literary Award. He was a contributor to A Time to Speak Out: On Israel, Zionism and Jewish Identity and his second book, The Blogging Revolution is on theinternet in repressive regimes.

He writes regularly for online magazines New Matilda and Crikey, is a board member of Macquarie University’s Centre for Middle East and North African Studies and co-founder of advocacy group Independent Australian Jewish Voices. He contributed to Amnesty International Australia’s 2008 campaign about Chinese internet repression and the Beijing Olympic Games.

Chibli Mallat

Chibli Mallat

Advisor

 

Chibli Mallat - Full Biography

is Presidential Professor of Law and Professor of Middle Eastern Law and Politics at the University of Utah. He also holds the EU Jean Monnet Chair of Law at St Joseph ‘s University in Lebanon. He has been tenured on three continents, and has in his academic career held teaching and research positions at a number of universities, including Princeton, Yale, Lyon, London, and Virginia. He has published over thirty books in English, French and Arabic, including the award-winning The Renewal of Islamic Law, Cambridge 1993, Introduction to Middle Eastern Law, Oxford 2007, and Iraq: Guide to Law and Policy, in press at Aspen.

As a legal practitioner and consultant, he was lead counsel in a number of international criminal law cases, including for the Sabra and Chatila victims in Belgium, for Imam Musa Sadr’s family against Mu‘ammar al-Qaddafi, and has helped set up Amnesty International’s regional office in Beirut in 2000, for which he acts as legal counsel. In 1996, he helped establish Indict, the international NGO that worked to bring Saddam Hussein and his aides to justice. He has advised several governments and governmental agencies on various legal issues, currently as Senior Legal Advisor to the Global Justice Project: Iraq. He is a frequent contributor to the media, and presently edits the Beirut Daily Star law page. In 2005, he ran the first democratic campaign for the Lebanese presidency.

Farah Mihlar

Farah Mihlar

Advisor

“I have always admired and appreciated the Sri Lanka campaign’s work on human rights and justice and joining the campaign gives me an opportunity to support and more directly make a contribution to their work.”

Farah Mihlar - Full Biography

is a Sri Lankan academic and human rights activist. She started her career in journalism; reporting on the conflict in Sri Lanka for national and international media including, Reuters and the Times of India; and also worked at the BBC World Service in London. She shifted into human rights work in 2005 working for the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). She specialised in minority rights and conflict prevention, for more than 8 year, working at Minority Rights Group International (MRG). She has conducted research and published reports and articles on minority rights in Israel, Kenya, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Uganda. She has a broad spectrum of work experience, ranging from training community activists on human rights to conducting advocacy campaigns at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva. She is currently completing a PhD at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) on the radicalisation of Muslims in a minority context, looking at the case of Sri Lanka from 1990-2010.

Lucy Popescu

Lucy Popescu

Advisor

“Sri Lanka is rated the 4th most dangerous place in the world for journalists, higher even than Afghanistan. The new peace in Sri Lanka has come at a high cost to freedom of expression and the human rights of its citizens.”

 

Lucy Popescu - Full Biography
Lucy Popescu is a writer, journalist and editor with a background in human rights, literature and theatre. For over 20 years she worked with the English Centre of PEN, the international association of writers, and was Director of its Writers in Prison Committee from 1991 to 2006. Lucy co-edited the PEN anthology, Another Sky (Profile Books, 2007). The Good Tourist, her book about human rights and ethical travel, was published by Arcadia Books in 2008. She writes a monthly column in the Literary Review about persecuted writers and journalists, reviews books, theatre and film and contributes to various publications in the UK and abroad, including The Guardian, The Independent, Independent on Sunday, Words without Borders and Tribune magazine. Lucy is a trustee of the JMK Award for theatre directors and a creative writing mentor for the Write to Life Programme at Freedom from Torture (formerly the Medical Foundation). She is an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Natalie Samarasinghe

Natalie Samarasinghe

Advisor

“What is – and isn’t – happening in Sri Lanka matters to us all. The bloodshed in 2009 and worrying developments since continue to challenge the global rallying cry of ‘never again’. The failure to investigate past and current abuses is preventing the country from moving forward; tempting others to adopt the ruthless ‘Sri Lanka model’; and undermining hard-won global standards. Sri Lanka is a test case for the international community. We failed in 2009. We must not fail again.”

Natalie Samarasinghe - Full Biography

is Executive Director of the United Nations Association – UK (UNA-UK), a UK-based charity that provides independent analysis on UN issues. She is the first woman to hold this position.

With a background in human rights, Natalie has worked for UNA-UK since 2006. Prior to joining the Association, she held various roles in the public, private and education sectors, and contributed to media in the UK and Sri Lanka. Natalie provides voluntary support to a number of NGOs, including as a Trustee of the Association for Citizenship Teaching. She edits publications on a wide range of global issues for organisations such as Witan Media and SAGE.

J. S. Tissainayagam

J. S. Tissainayagam

Advisor

“I am a Tamil from Sri Lanka who is a victim of State terror. For sustainable peace, all peoples in Sri Lanka should have the freedom to exercise their right to self-determination, nationhood and a homeland. I would like to contribute to realising that peace.”

J. S. Tissainayagam - Full Biography

worked in English-language national newspapers in Sri Lanka for over 20 years. In 2009 he was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment for writing critically of the Sri Lanka government. Released after 675 days in detention following an international campaign, he now lives in the US.

He was awarded the British Press Freedom Award – Foreign Journalist of the Year (2010) and the CPJ Press Freedom Award (2009). He was Nieman Fellow at Harvard and Reagan-Fascell Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy.

He contributes to Foreign Policy, GlobalPost and Asian Correspondent. His article ‘Fear of Ethnic Reconciliation Reason for Post-War Censorship in Sri Lanka’ appears in the South Asia Review (Pub. University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, Vol. XXXIII No.3 Jan 2013).

In memory

Edward Mortimer CMG (1943 - 2021)

Edward Mortimer CMG (1943 - 2021)

First Chair of the Sri Lanka Campaign

“I don’t want yet again to be wringing my hands, in a few months or years, about something close to ethnic cleansing or genocidal war crimes that we failed to investigate or prevent while there was still time.”

Edward Mortimer - Full Biography

was the first Chair of the Sri Lanka Campaign.

From 1998 to 2006 he served as chief speechwriter and (from 2001) as director of communications to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He spent much of his career as a journalist, first with The Times of London, where he developed an expertise in Middle East affairs, and later with the Financial Times, where from 1987 to 1998 he was the main commentator and columnist on foreign affairs. From 2007 to 2011 he was Senior Vice-President and Chief Programme Officer at the Salzburg Global Seminar.

Mr. Mortimer also served as a fellow and/or faculty at several institutions, including the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the International Institute of Strategic Studies, and (as Honorary Professor) the University of Warwick; and on the governing bodies of several non-governmental organizations, including Chatham House, the Institute of War and Peace Reporting, the John Stuart Mill Institute, the 21st Century Trust, Minority Rights Group International, the Agence France-Presse Foundation and the Children’s Radio Foundation. He is President of the British Association of Former UN Civil Servants.

Read our tribute to Edward.