Sri Lankas Killing Fields. Warning: Graphic Images

Warning: This article is not light reading. This story contains graphic images.

In a truly damning story produced by Channel 4 in Britain, Australian international current affairs show Four Corners has aired for the first time, graphic, horrific footage and forensic evidence that up to 40,000 Tamil civilians were killed by the Sri Lankan Government in the final weeks of the 25 year civil war between the Sri Lankan Government and the Tamil Tigers.

The program provided evidence that while the ‘Tigers’ used civilians as human shields, the Government forces repeatedly shelled civilians who had been offered sanctuary in “no fire zones”, in a no-holds-barred effort to destroy the Tamil Tiger army. These allegations are serious enough to suggest serious violations of human rights law, some of which could amount to war crimes, and crimes against humanity.

The Government of Sri Lanka denies this, saying the information is based on “biased material”, questioning the numbers killed and the authenticity of the visual evidence.

Full Four Corners Video Link : You can judge for yourself.

Sri Lanka Government War Crimes – Shelling Civilians | Footage still taken from the Four Corners film in question

Warning: The program (and the image stills below) contains disturbing descriptions and footage of executions, atrocities and the shelling of civilians. It includes devastating new video evidence of war crimes. Some of this material was shot on video cameras; other scenes are taken from mobile phones used by Sri Lankan soldiers as trophy vision.

Put together, it creates one of the most confronting stories of war and conflict ever seen on Australian television.

The film went to air on July 4th, 2011, just as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon faces growing criticism for refusing to launch a full independent investigation into “credible allegations” of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

While the program clearly shows the brutality of Government forces, the film’s producers also detail the horrific atrocities carried out by the Tamil Tigers, who used civilians as human shields. In one case, a Tamil Tiger suicide bomber detonates an explosive charge while standing in the middle of a “safe haven” area for other Tamils.

As one international legal expert explains, the behaviour of the ‘Tigers’ cannot be ignored:

“Crimes by one side do not begin to give a kind of carte blanche to the other side to break the rules as well.”

However, in the end “Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields” presents a damning account of the actions of Sri Lankan Government forces, in a war that the Government still insists was conducted with a policy of “Zero Civilian Casualties”.


Mobile phone video taken as a grotesque trophy, recorded by Sri Lankan government soldiers as they take pleasure in executing unarmed, bound prisoners. Footage was authenticated as being filmed in May 2009 in the last few days of the war. Image still taken from Four Corners (Channel 4) film aired July 4th, 2011 – Sri Lankas Killing Fields

images (1)

Mobile phone footage of naked Tiger prisoners being executed with their hands bound. The government claims the footage is fake, even though the footage has since been authenticated by the United Nations. | Image still taken from Four Corners 4th July 2011


Tamil star TV Presenter Issipriya: raped, tortured and killed by Sri Lankan government forces. Sri Lankas’s ministry of defense claim she was a member of the Tamil Tigers given the rank of Lt.Col, although she did not participate in combat. Secondary Information Source: video published by ChannelSriLanka | Image still source: Four Corners “Sri Lankas Killing Fields” 4th July 2011

While truly distressing, I share the same view as Four Corners and Channel 4 who produced the news film being discussed: I too believe it is important the world be prompted into loud public outcry enough so that action is taken to bring  justice upon witnessing the extent of atrocities like this around the world. This is worse than any inhumane cruelty to animals in Indonesian Abbatoirs and more worthy of your time and attention, as a fellow human being.

Source: Four Corners – 04/07/2011: Sri Lankas Killing Fields


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Crime, Multiculturalism, People, Politics, Law

Author:Andrew Beato

CEO, Chief Editor and founder of Intentious. Passionate comment enthusiast, amateur philosopher, Quora contributor, audiobook and general knowledge addict.

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20 Comments on “Sri Lankas Killing Fields. Warning: Graphic Images”

  1. Phil
    July 5, 2011 at 7:38 pm #

    Words fail me as we humans are judged by the Universe.

    • Anonymous
      July 6, 2011 at 9:28 pm #

      Like Phil words also fail me. Those images posted put the animals that did this and continue to do these crimes into a class of their own, far removed from anything that decent and loving human beings would every decide to do to their fellow man. How far has certain groups in our human race deteriorated. JUDGEMENT DAY is closing in on them all. Chez, Sydney

  2. July 6, 2011 at 9:17 am #

    Words also fail me. The C4 film director McCray was recently interviewed and the best bit (for me) was when he waffled that he couldn’t find a representative of the LTTE to ask questions. And I thought McCray was a fearless investigative filmmaker with extensive contacts 🙂 Couldn’t he get an interview with the TGTE or BTF?

    In his article in the Grauniad, he writes: ..“The brutal Sinhalese government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa..” that alone shows his (and C4’s) view point. There’s nothing so nauseating as being lectured to by whiny Brits like Mc.

    How C4’s propaganda technique works
    It’s not made clear if the clips are from the same camera or even from the same incident. The famous the execution clip of the naked men, then the execution of clothed women (LTTE or civilians?), then the one of ‘Lt Col’ Issipriya’s body, and the segment showing naked female bodies being disposed of are different films. C4 shows them together to create the impression that it is all of the same guys at the same place.

    In the last two clips its clear that the soldiers are Sinhalese, the impression a Western viewer (or ‘concerned humanitarian worker; 🙂 ) gets is that the first clip must be from the same source and of actions being undertaken by the same perpetrators. It’s a sly, subtle and common technique in polemic documentaries.

    This is not to say that LTTE and/or Tamil civilians weren’t executed as some obviously were. But let’s please not pretend that C4 have suddenly discovered a monopoly on what happened in SL. It can and will be disputed.

    • November 5, 2011 at 5:48 pm #

      no matter what all these apologists for these cruel murderers(GoSL/Sinhala Sri Lanka Army) say the truth is thousands of innocent Tamils were killed, raped and thousands more injured. Tamil culture has been destroyed.

      Everyone knows the GoSL/Army didn’t let any international media/NGO’s/third-party/independent people in during 2008/2009 because they wanted to hide all the dead bodies of the innocent Children, Women and men they killed.

      The Sinhalese Army who murdered and raped so many civilians should not be allowed to get away with their crimes.

      see this website —->

    • March 11, 2012 at 1:06 am #

      you are in ‘denial’ mode…

      More and more evidence is coming out of Sri Lankan Army brutality , warcrimes/genocide.

      If the Sri Lankan govt really believed that Channel 4 video was fake, they would have challenged them legally.

      There are also survivors/victims of SL Army crimes who can provide evidence.

      The SL govt has been killing, raping, torturing and illegally imprisoning Tamils for more than 60 years.

      more info at

  3. July 6, 2011 at 9:09 pm #

    I witnessed the anti Tamil riots of July 1983. Given my understanding of the atrocities of the LTTE I was able to rationalize the anger behind them.
    When I returned home I was able to research further and although I considered the demands of the LTTE excessive and their methods unnacceptable, there was no way I could accept that the greater Sri Lankan populace were purely innocent victims of terrorism even then
    Although history is written by the victors, there is nothing that can be done to expunge the horrors of this genocide. The sooner the UN investigates and attempts to bring these criminals to justice the better

  4. July 7, 2011 at 6:30 pm #

    Ahh… interesting. My comment writing against this film lasted about two days before being removed. Just like the SL Govt, whiny liberal lefties don’t like being contradicted, no? Typical.

    • July 10, 2011 at 2:21 pm #

      No comments have been deleted from this site, or ever will be (unless they’re auto-SPAM). Regardless of the position we encourage all comments and language. Please re-post as I haven’t seen your original comment go live?

  5. March 11, 2012 at 1:08 am #

    Dear Andrew Beato,

    Thanks for writing this article.

    Due to Economic/Trade/Poilitical/Geo-Political/Strategic reasons many countries have supported the Sri Lankan Govt. The Financial Crisis and the rise of China & India means that the USA and it’s allies (including Europe & Australia) are using this issue to their own advantage. You can read about this in detail on the website

    The Sri Lankan Govt can deny as much as they want, but the truth will come out slowly.
    (The Sri Lankan Army like typical murderers/rapists/thieves deny their crimes. There is no surprise in that.)

    None of us should remain silent. If we ignore this. These types of brutality will become normal. We may even become victims of such crimes ourselves one day. As the saying “First they came for the jews, we did nothing. … … … Then they came for me.”

    We need to urge our local politicians to urge the United Nations to conduct an independent war crimes inquiry.

    Let’s never forget.

    1. The Sri Lankan Govt did-not allow independent/foreign media during the war and even after the war did not allow media free access in the NorthEast. and especially to the open prison where they held captive 300,000 civilians.

    2. The Sri Lankan govt held captive pregnant mothers, babies, young children and old people (even aged over 70)

    3. ALL of the SL Army who took pleasure killing and raping civilians have not been punished. They are living happily in Sri Lanka, and may even come to Australia one day as a migrant!!!!!
    – Do Australians or other countries want these Rapists and Murderers coming to their country as migrants????

    see more at this website,

  6. March 17, 2012 at 6:04 pm #

    Please remove the last picture, Or edit it..This is not humanity… Please , Please Please…It’s our humble request..

  7. Priya
    March 18, 2012 at 9:19 pm #

    Ye sab galat hai.

    • Hero
      March 18, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

      Kya galat h?

  8. June 19, 2012 at 3:18 am #

    I have worked with an Australian charity in Northern Sri Lanka. What happened there is horrible, and there are whole towns without any young men.

    But don’t give up on the country – working there, I have never seen such hope for the future in people. For the first time in thirty years, the people are working towards their future, rather than towards subsistance.

    If you want to read a little about my work in SL –

    • June 19, 2012 at 3:21 am #

      One more thing, although the government did horrible things, such as allegedly targeting civilians, one can’t forget that the Tigers, too, did horrible things, such as forcefully recruiting child soldiers and using human shields. This was a dirty war, and neither side was innocent.

      A good piece of reading on it is The Cage by someone Weiss (can’t remember off the top of my head).

      • June 19, 2012 at 3:25 am #

        And one more, “one more thing” – whilst the AP’s to the Geneva Convention do place some rules on intra-state conflicts, they are obviously not regulated to the same extent as international armed conflict, and are much harder to police, both because journalism can be controlled within the country, and because access is denied to proper observers. Further, the outcry against “terrorism” has been used to erode the rights of those who alleged terrorists represent (although, they represent these people often without consent).

        This conflict is just one example about how easy it is for the world to turn a blind eye to horrific crimes against humanity (both legally, and journalistically) in an internal conflict.

  9. JC
    August 25, 2012 at 8:52 am #

    The Tamils started the war. The Tigers started the war crimes, suicide bombings, torture and masscres. Don’t complain if the government responds the same way. If you live by the sword, you will die by the sword.

    • Frank
      February 22, 2013 at 4:59 pm #

      – They started!
      – But they say we started?!
      – Yes, but they are lying, we are telling the truth.

      And the war goes on forever, and people like you support it.

  10. raja
    November 21, 2012 at 1:31 am #

    do u know issipriya is a pornstar??


  1. Sri Lankas Killing Fields. | Lovely - October 15, 2012

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