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Four motorcycle-borne assailtants stab Sri Lankan editor and wife, smash his car

Sri Lankan newspaper editor Upali Tennakoon, of the independent Rivira weekly newspaper, and his wife Dhammika, left, arrive for medical treatment at a hospital in Colombo, Sri Lanka, Friday, January 23, 2009. The Sri Lankan police say the newspaper editor and his wife were stabbed by assailants on motorbikes as they drove to work. The assault came two weeks after another newspaper editor was gunned down by unknown assailants on motorcycles.Photo: Associated Press (AP) / Eranga Jayawardena

Assailants on motorbikes attacked a Sri Lankan newspaper editor and his wife as they drove to work Friday morning, stabbing them repeatedly, the Associated Press (AP) has reported quoting authorities. The couple received minor wounds and both were expected to recover.

Four people on motorbikes blocked Upali Tennakoon's car outside of Colombo as he and his wife were heading to work at the independent Rivira weekly newspaper, police spokesman Ranjith Gunasekera said. The assailants then repeatedly stabbed the couple, he said.

Dr. Prasad Ariyawansa, a doctor at Colombo National Hospital, said Tennakoon was treated for lacerations to his hands and forehead and his wife had some lacerations as well.

"They smashed the windscreen and then started attacking us," his wife Dhammika said as they were brought to the Colombo National hospital, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP). "I hugged him tight as they started hitting us with sticks and stabbed," she said.

The assault came two weeks after Lasantha Wickrematunge, editor of a paper that is harshly critical of the government, was gunned down by unknown assailants on motorcycles. His killing, just two days after a private TV station was shot up by gunmen armed with grenades, prompted a wave of international criticism against Sri Lanka over the safety of journalists. No arrests have been made in the killing.The government has also been criticized for arresting journalists critical of its policies and its war on ethnic Tamil rebels.

Date posted: January 23, 2009 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 498