Federal officials try to verify that an MP is under house arrest in Sri Lanka - InfoNews

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Federal officials try to verify that an MP is under house arrest in Sri Lanka

NDP MP Rathika Sitsabaiesan rises during Question Period in the House of Commons in Ottawa on October 19, 2012. The Canadian government is trying to determine if there is any truth to a Sri Lankan media report that a New Democrat MP is under house arrest in the Asian country. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
December 31, 2013 - 8:01 PM

OTTAWA - The Canadian government is trying to determine if there is any truth to a Sri Lankan media report that a New Democrat MP is under house arrest in the Asian country.

The Columbo Gazette is reporting on its website that Rathika Sitsabaiesan (Rah-thee-kah Sit-SAHB-ahn) has been confined to the hotel she is staying at in the community of Jaffna.

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird and the junior minister responsible for consular affairs, Lynne Yelich, have both tweeted they are very concerned about the reports.

Yelich says Canada's ambassador to Sri Lankan has contacted officials to determine the Sri Lankan-born MP's status.

A NDP source says New Democrat leader Tom Mulcair is involved in trying to get the matter sorted out.

A Tamil website, TamilNet, has posted an account saying that some Sri Lankan officials were stationed at Sitsabaiesan's hotel Tuesday night and were not allowing anyone to visit her.

Canadian officials could not immediately confirm or deny those reports.

Sitsabaiesan, 32, came to Canada with her family at the age of five and was elected to the House of Commons in 2011 in the Toronto-area riding of Scarborough-Rouge River.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2013
The Canadian Press

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