COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — A corruption watchdog has accused Sri Lanka’s government of twice disrupting a training program for journalists from the country’s former civil war zone, accusing them of being agents for the defeated Tamil Tiger separatists.

Transparency International Sri Lanka said in a statement Wednesday that it organized training on corruption-related investigative reporting for ethnic Tamil journalists from the country’s north and east.

The statement said the journalists were evicted from two venues. The managers of the first venue told the group that the defense ministry had objected to the training, while a group of protesters, including military personnel, disrupted a second attempt, according to the statement. It said the participants were also forced out of their hotel at night.

Defense ministry spokesman Ruwan Wanigasooriya rejected the allegation.

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