Sri Lanka on Tuesday described hacking of the ministry of media and information's website as an act of ‘cyber terrorism’.
"We see this as an act of cyber terrorism," Secretary to the Ministry of Media Charitha Herath said while describing it as the work of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam rump living overseas.
The unidentified hackers yesterday on the ministry's website uploaded a link to an Australian Broadcasting Corp report on atrocities during the final stages of Sri Lanka's conflict against Tamil Tigers in 2009.
"Stop Killing Innocent Tamil Ppl! Or Get prepared 4 Attacks From Us!" read a message left on the website, media.gov.lk.
Herath told the state radio that the ministry had been able to gain control of the hacked site. "They operate on various fronts, this is (cyber) just one of them," he said, adding that the timing was significant as Lanka's alleged rights atrocities was coming under the focus of the United Nations Human Rights Council's ongoing sessions which kicked off in Geneva on Monday.
Rights groups accuse the media ministry of scuttling the freedom of web based media.
Websites carrying anti-government content are being locally blocked by the internet service providers on ministry's orders, they claim. Meanwhile, the government officials said that they had protested at the UNHRC sessions on Monday against the move to screen the British Channel 4 television's 'No Fire Zone' documentary which gave pictures of alleged summary executions.
Sri Lankan Ambassador in Geneva Ravinatha Ariyasinha had held that the documentary was discredited, uncorroborated and unsubstantiated and if allowed to be screened in Geneva, the UN would be flouting its own rules.