Richard de Zoysa

Richard De Zoysa

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Richard de Zoysa

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Richard de Zoysa was a well-known Sri Lankan journalist, author, human rights activist and actor, who was abducted and murdered on February 18, 1990. His murder caused widespread outrage inside the country, and is widely believed to have been carried out by a death squad linked to elements within the government.

Life and death


de Zoysa was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He was of mixed ethnicity, his father a majority Sinhalese and mother a prominent medical surgeon from the minority Sri Lankan Tamil community.

In 1983, de Zoysa starred in Lester James Peries's film Yuganthaya alongside Gamini Fonseka. The role of socialist Malin Kabalana in the movie closely mirrored de Zoysa's own beliefs.


At the time of his abduction and murder, de Zoysa was the head of the Colombo office of the Inter Press Service He lived in the Welikadawatte housing estate with his mother, Dr. Manoranee Saravanamuttu and associate A. V. Karunaratne. at Moratuwa, some 12 miles south of Colombo. He had been...
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