Sri Lanka – People’s Protest – the planners behind the protests

In Sri Lanka a series of protests are taking place with central location set up in Galle Fact Green. The original grievances have got diluted in a plethora of other slogans automatically questioning a possible covert game plan in operation. Having taken out the textbooks and gone through similar protests choreographed by US in strategically important countries, it is quite clear that there is some mischief at play. While the protestors may not like or may not know these hidden hands & the funding that goes into protests & given that they are unlikely to want to accept that they have been turned to pawns in a larger game, it is however important to take stock of the similarities & thereafter seek answers to how we are to resolve the crisis.

National Endowment for Democracy is the covert arm of US-funded regime change. NED is the Trojan Horse carrying democracy” human rights” freedoms” to advance US hegemony – to divide, destroy & destabilize nations with disinformation.

It is no secret that US supported the Hong Kong protests. Senior US diplomats even held meetings with the ‘pro-democracy’ activists. $640,000 was given to these protestors.

National Endowment for Democracy (NED) is alleged to have bankrolled the protests via local entities that included National Democratic Institute (also located in Sri Lanka) NED is said to have given $155,000 in 2018 alone with $200,000 given to the NDI.

NED created in 1983 replaces the role carried out by CIA. This is what NED Founder Allen Weinstein declared in 1991 – A lot of what we do today, was done covertly 25 years ago by the CIA”.

Funds are sent to destabilize countries first & then stage coup-d’etat. The modus operandi is to fund independent” groups & use them to create the system ‘change’ drumming ‘human rights’ ‘democracy’ to camouflage their objectives.

NED is funded by the US State Department & is aligned to US geopolitical goals. NED President is required to appear before the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee every year to brief them of their progress”. With US pivot to Asia, NED plays a major role.

Democracy as per US definition is hardly the will of the People & is all about US hegemony & fulfilling its corporate self-interest.

1964 – Coup in Brazil & overthrowing President Goulart

1973 – Coup in Chile & overthrowing President Allende

1990 – NED manipulated elections in Nicaragua (William Blum)

1990 & 1992 – NED overthrew democratically-elected governments in Bulgaria

1996 – NED manipulated elections in Mongolia (William Blum)

2004 – $65m given by NED to Ukraine’s opposition forces. In 2013 NED funded 65 NGOs in Ukraine & even paid wages” for every person taking to the street.

2017 – Cambodia shut down NDI (National Democratic Institute) & ordered the foreign staff to leave & alleged the NED & IRI for planning to topple the government.

2018 – NED funded think tanks, news agencies, political parties to the tune of $1,000,000 in Bolivia because President Evo Morales nationalized Bolivia’s gas

2020 – NED spent over $2m for so-called human rights movements in Kazakhstan to commence disruptive news”

2020 – More than $10m for nearly 70 anti-China projects in Taiwan

2022 – President of NED visited Taiwan to ‘strengthen solidarity’ via ideology” – main aim to incite separatism.

NED has linked itself to every separatist force in China, sponsoring protests & producing lies & exaggerations. NED used World Uyghur Congress to disseminate false genocide” & detention of more than a million Uygurs” in China’s Xinjiang no different to the false genocide” drummed by LTTE fronts.

NED has also provided French groups $1.4m to campaign against former President Mitterand

NED was involved in overthrowing elected governments in Haiti & Nicaragua, Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia & Belarus.

Denigrating the leaders of targeted countries through NED funded NGOs is part of the plan.

NED invites separatists/fugitives to Washington & they teach these radical how to escalate tensions. NED also teaches how to disseminate disinformation. NED hires so-called observers to use social media to influence general elections.

NED also funds Human Rights Watch, Reporters Without Borders.

NED is also behind the colour revolutions in Europe, Africa & Middle East. Is the yellow democracy” in Sri Lanka part of NED modus operandi as we notice the anti-majority attacks coming from anti-corruption protestors?

Late Hassina Leelaratna’s article CIA/NED/IRI in Sri Lanka – Now targeting local government, political parties”

presents some startling pointers. She says that US foreign policy of Democrats & Republicans don’t vary as the aim is to expand American Exceptionalism. They use supposedly ‘non-partisan’ entities that are led by prominent US politicians – International Republican Institute was led by John McCain, National Democratic Institute for International Affairs by US Secretary of State Madeline Albright.

Both IRI and NDI are funded by NED.

IRI has an office in Sri Lanka & is given an annual budget of $300,000. IRI has got itself linked to the caretakers of the local government system – in Hambantota, Akkaraipattu, Jaffna Municipalities. IRI is assisting with external communication strategies & communication techniques as well as use of social media – how many of the people in these areas actually have sophisticated IT or smart phones to be operating digitally? Who gave IRI access to electoral registers & why? A tweet by IRI CEO in August 2017 says IRI is traveling to North Central Province to work with political party members

What is IRI really up to? Is IRI a registered NGO? Is the intelligence agencies aware of this & what is the National Secretariat for NGO doing about its covert activities? Hassina says that the IRI is listed as a partner/funder of the Federation of Sri Lankan Local Government Authorities , an NGO which receives funding from USAID, British & Canadian Governments. IRI is strategically operating among Mayors & local government officials without any accountability.

NED has provided over $2m to Sri Lankan NGOs in 2016.

In December 2019, the US Congress approved & increased annual funding for NED from $180m to $300m.

NED (National Endowment for Democracy) & its 4 core grantees – NDI (National Democratic Institute)IRI (International Republican Institute), Solidarity Center & Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE)

The funding will mean over 1500 NGOs across 90 countries will be receiving aid for covert operations under the guise of promoting democratic values. The areas they will be asked to target include (elections, trade unions, private sector, media, human rights, rule of law)

NED Sri Lanka alongside its associate entities operate in Sri Lanka

NDI in Sri Lanka

NDI head was former US Secretary of State Madeline Albright who died in March 2022.

NDI partners with Sarvodaya

Involved in 2000,2005,2010,2015 & 2019 elections.

NDI signed Sri Lanka to become the 1st South Asian member of Open Government Partnership in 2015 to develop an Open Parliament Plan in partnership with civil society.

NDI & IRI conducted a pre-election assessment mission in Nov 2019 (Presidential Elections)

Thusitha Pilapitiya is the Country Director of NDI in Sri Lanka

Funding in Sri Lanka by NED to:

  • Solidarity Centre – $708,323 (2016) – empower new generations of workers to engage more directly with the labor movement, center will collaborate with select unions, encourage effective use of social media by local partners, and engage recently trained activists and leaders in advocating for worker rights.
  • International Republican Institute – $300,000 in 2016 / $100,000 + $242,000 in 2017 / $430,000 in 2018 / – provide Sri Lanka’s elected officials and civic actors access to credible public opinion research, encourage newly elected municipal councilors to adopt enhanced standards of democratic governance, institute will conduct workshops for local officials and their staff
  • Center for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) – $219,872 (2016) / $242,216 (2017) /$190,013 in 2018 / $311,355 in 2019 / $669,607 in 2020 / – encourage the private sector’s proactive role in formulating public policy, support Sri Lanka’s transition back toward a market-based democracy.
  • NDI Sri Lanka – $325,000 to support grassroot youth leadership & political engagement, Preparing youth to engage with power holders (interesting)
  • Tracking Transnational Economic Crimes – $106,556 – Accountability. Documenting & raising awareness on corruption & economic crimes, identifying individuals & institution involved in Sri Lanka.
  • Freedom of Expression – $100,000 – independent journalism, independent media network,
  • Verite Research Pvt Ltd – $75,000 – parliamentary tracking for accountability & good governance – applying web-based parliamentary tracking tool. Online platform that documents political activities of MPs & connect to media & civil society.
  • Centre for Human Rights & Development – $70,000 – redress victim communities through legal assistance & public awareness campaigns to repeal PTA.
  • Human Rights Advocacy – $60,000 – women’s experiences. Gather data & stories about women’s experience in the North & East, catalog and analyze the information.
  • Viluthu – $60,000 – strengthening civil society, networks for active political participation. Target audience – youth, university students, women’s network leaders.
  • Law & Society Trust – $50,000 in 2021 / $20,000 in 2019 – improving legal literacy & land rights. Managing a nation-wide network of organizations focused on land rights, convene govt officials, citizens on land laws & policies.
  • Janawaboda Kendraya – $41,500 – civic engagement for sustained collective action. Street theatre being promoted.
  • Centre for Environmental Justice (Guarantee) Limited – $36,,000– citizens participating in monitoring economic development.
  • Centre for Justice & Change – $30,000 to promote leadership development of community leaders & protect human rights in East Sri Lanka (transitional justice)
  • Aham Humanitarian Resource Centre – $30,000 – Develop Democratic actors in Eastern Province.
  • Uva Shakthi Foundation – $29,500 – promoting citizenship participation & enhancing capacity in Estate Tamil communities.
  • Families of the Disappeared – $18,000 – mobilize families of the disappeared” & support transitional justice.
  • The International Working Group on Sri Lanka Ltd – $50,000 annually (2017 /2018 /2019) – human rights protection, justice, reform, reconciliation.

Look at the target audiences & the subject areas that the funding covers. Understand where the agitations take root. US will not pump $3billion annually to NGOs for nothing!

If Sri Lankans think what they are going through has nothing to do with NED, then they should be in for more surprises.



Shenali D Waduge


Note: Article written in April 2022

You may also like...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *