A Common Cause

Eranga Jayawardena / AP

An ethnic Tamil Sri Lankan woman holds a photo of a missing relative during an Aug. 30 candlelight vigil in Colombo.

On Aug. 1, a throng of heavily armed men in helmets and camouflage vests charged a crowd in Weliweriya, a town northeast of Colombo. Demonstrators had gathered on the streets to demand clean drinking water. Instead, they were met with a volley of live rounds from security forces. At least three civilians were killed and several injured. By the next morning, one eyewitness told a local paper, the military had rinsed the blood off the streets.

Washing such incidents from Sri Lanka's international reputation won't be as easy. The island nation has...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!