Hidden Lives - The Untold Story of Urban Refugees (16/43)

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Sri Lankan refugee, Paramanantham Dhushyanthan, 31, from Mannar District, pictured in Bangkok, Thailand<br />
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"I was a member of a political party called EPRLF (Eelam People Revolutionary Liberation Front). I joined them to get work and I became a bus conductor, this is a government job. In the election campaign we had some problems from the government parties, they did not want us to run in the election so they always beat us and warned us not to enter the election. When I was there every day when you go to sleep you don't know if you will wake in the morning, because in my area many people were taken during the night by the military and you will not see them again. They arrive in unmarked vehicles, in Sri Lanka we call it the 'white van'. <br />
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I would not stay in my home because I thought something could happen to me, I stayed in a friend's, or at my sister's. So one day I was kidnapped, it was July 10th, 2008, at 7pm. During that time there were many people kidnapped, we would see many people dead in the mornings by the roadside; the government and their parties would shoot them. That evening six people came in a vehicle, they pointed a gun at my chest and told me to get in the vehicle. They bound my hands, I recognised them, one was from Criminal Investigation Department of Sri Lanka. They took me to an open area and took me out from the vehicle and everyone started to beat me with guns, I was kneeing in front of them and one man loaded a gun and pointed it at my head and was ready to kill me. Then one man said, "don't do it now let's do it later, because when we caught him there was a doctor watching us". They beat me again and left me. I went to my house and told my mother, the next day my mother took me to Columbo. <br />
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I arranged some money, my sister pawned some things, and I came to Bangkok. A man told me that Bangkok is the only place that the refugees can stay, that you can register with the UNHCR and they will look after you. After I came here people visited my ho
Sri Lankan refugee, Paramanantham Dhushyanthan, 31, from Mannar District, pictured in Bangkok, Thailand

"I was a member of a political party called EPRLF (Eelam People Revolutionary Liberation Front). I joined them to get work and I became a bus conductor, this is a government job. In the election campaign we had some problems from the government parties, they did not want us to run in the election so they always beat us and warned us not to enter the election. When I was...
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