Will Mahinda be arrested in the UK?

December 1, 2010 Comments Off on Will Mahinda be arrested in the UK?

Guardian.co.uk (30/11) – War crimes lawyers seek arrest of Sri Lankan president in Oxford

Lawyers working for Tamil activists are attempting to obtain a war crimesarrest warrant against Sri Lanka‘s president and senior member of his entourage who have arrived in Britain.

Mahinda Rajapaksa, whose government defeated the separatist Tamil Tigers last year amid humanitarian protests about the treatment of civilians trapped in the war zone, is due to speak at the Oxford Union on Thursday.

The visit comes as Tamil supporters claim to have acquired a video showing a former Tamil Tiger colonel being interrogated by Sri Lankan forces. His family allege he was killed after surrendering.

The Sunday Leader –  New Claims By Channel 4 Rock Presidential Visit

Un-substantiated Video is ‘elongated’ version
Disapora attempts to use video as evidence of ‘crimes’
President’s arrest is “wishful thinking’

By Faraz Shauketaly in London.

Sensational new claims broadcast by Britain’s Channel 4 TV network on Tuesday night, has threatened to rock President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s semi-official visit to the United Kingdom. Presenter Jon Snow acknowledged that the new video – a lengthier version of one broadcast last year – was “unsubstantiated” but nevertheless, the revelations made on one of Britain’s more popular national news networks was a victory being celebrated by the Diaspora’s media personnel.

The strategically timed release of the news item highlighted the inadequate measures taken by agencies hired by the Sri Lanka government to repair its reputation and to showcase its own version of events of the war victory. Amidst deepening gloom that the Tamil Diaspora are clearly winning the battle on the media and public relations fronts President Rajapaksa is considering his government’s options.

The Sri Lanka High Commission immediately refuted the allegations saying that this new video was merely an “elongated version” of the one released last year which was condemned as being without substance by Sri Lanka at the time.

GoSL's mistress China gets rid of genocide evidence

June 17, 2010 Comments Off on GoSL's mistress China gets rid of genocide evidence

Sri Lanka News First – Government contracts Chinese firm to destroy bodies buried in Nandikadal lagoon

Diplomatic sources say that the government has permitted a Chinese firm to commence a project at the Nandikadal lagoon where Sri Lankan security forces had buried thousands of bodies of LTTE cadres during the final stages of the war last May.

The Chinese firm has been assigned to exhume the bodies and destroy them beyond recognition. More

LTTE promoted women's rights & abolished caste

June 17, 2010 Comments Off on LTTE promoted women's rights & abolished caste

IPS – How the War Gave Tamil Women More Space

By Feizal Samath

Whenever Sri Lankan rights activist Shereen Xavier attends a meeting related to her work in this war-battered northern capital, she makes sure to be dressed in a sari, a traditional gown worn by South Asian women.

“To be accepted by society here, you need to be seen in a sari,” says Xavier, executive director of the Home for Human Rights (HHR). But back in the confines of her office, the Western-educated Xavier feels comfortable enough to wear trousers. More

GoSL tourist Trap: Trample Tamil death trail!

May 21, 2010 Comments Off on GoSL tourist Trap: Trample Tamil death trail!

Yahoo News – Sri Lankans hit Tamil Tiger tourist trail

AFP

KILINOCHCHI, Sri Lanka (AFP) – The wreckage left by a brutal war has created a new tourist trail in Sri Lanka just a year after the Tamil Tiger rebels were crushed by government forces.

A giant water tower smashed to the ground is a star attraction for hundreds of people driving through the former war zone where the rebels once had their de facto capital.

Situated along the highway that links the island’s northern Jaffna peninsula to the south, the white cement tower was a prominent landmark in Kilinochchi, but was blown up by the rebels during a battle with army troops.

Such fighting is now a thing of the past after government soldiers seized all territory controlled by the Tigers and wiped out their leadership one year ago this week.

The guerrillas had been fighting for an independent homeland for the island’s minority Tamil population concentrated in the island’s northeast — a decades-long conflict that the UN estimates cost 100,000 lives.

Surrounded by destroyed buildings and army camps, the water tower provides an irresistible backdrop for amateur photographers. It is also covered in graffiti written by the soldiers who marched in last year on their way to victory. More

More on GoSL's slaughter of Tamils

May 21, 2010 Comments Off on More on GoSL's slaughter of Tamils

The Age (18/05) – Military blamed in Sri Lanka

ABC Radio Australia (18/05) – Calls for new probe into end of Sri Lankan civil warRead transcript & listen to interview

The Independent (UK 18/05) – Sri Lanka accused of war crimes in final onslaught

The Telegraph (UK 19/05) A year after the defeat of the LTTE, human rights are still pivotal in Sri Lanka

Al Jazeera English (18/05)Fighting impunity in Sri Lanka

ICG report makes a lie of PM Rudd's claim that SL is safe

May 17, 2010 Comments Off on ICG report makes a lie of PM Rudd's claim that SL is safe

The Australian – Report damns Tamil returns

A DAMNING international report rejects the Rudd government’s assertion that it is now safe for Tamil asylum-seekers to return home and says that tens of thousands of unarmed Tamil civilians were killed in the final months of Sri Lanka’s civil war – a toll far higher than previous estimates.

And it urges several countries including Australia not to deport suspected former Tamil Tiger fighters, saying that would put their lives in danger.

The report by the International Crisis Group alleges after an eight-month war crimes investigation that industrial-scale slaughter of civilians by the Sri Lankan government included targeting of hospitals, safe havens and foreign aid groups to remove foreign observers and crush the Tamil Tigers (LTTE).

The Sri Lankan government had a long history of intimidation of critics and those with knowledge of atrocities, said the ICG, a major Brussels-based conflict resolution group funded by several governments.

The report includes a specific recommendation to Australia, Canada, the US, Britain, France and the EU that they: “Do not extradite LTTE suspects to Sri Lanka unless guarantees of humane treatment and fair trials are in place.”

Business Week – Sri Lanka War Abuses Killed Thousands, Group Says

Indian Express – US-based rights group claims Lankan forces killed civilians

Financial Times – Pressure on Sri Lanka for war crimes probe

The New York Times – Sri Lanka Forces Blamed for Most Civilian Deaths

by Lydia Polgreen

Tens of thousands of Tamil civilians died in the last, bloody months of Sri Lanka’s civil war, the International Crisis Group said in an investigative report to be released Monday, most of them as a result of government shelling of areas that were supposed to be safe zones.

The report, which cites witness testimony, satellite images, documents and other evidence, calls for a wide-reaching international investigation into what it calls atrocities committed in the last months of the Sri Lankan government’s war against the Tamil Tiger insurgency.

The war ended a year ago, when the Tigers’ top leadership was killed on a narrow strand of beach in northeastern Sri Lanka, capping a two-decade armed struggle by a group that pioneered some of the ugliest insurgent tactics in the world, including female suicide bombers and child soldiers.

Because the government barred independent journalists and most humanitarian workers from the war zone, the death toll of the final months of fighting, when at least 300,000 Tamil civilians were pinned down on a beach, caught between the rebels and government forces, is not known. More

UK: Pro LTTE Tamil pensioner local election

April 18, 2010 § 1 Comment

Croydon Guardian – Tamil Tiger pensioner gets election go-ahead

by Mike Didymus

A pensioner has been given the go-ahead to run candidates in the upcoming elections despite his links to a banned terrorist organisation.

Nadarajah Balasubramaniam, 69, hopes to persuade people the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam are freedom fighters, despite years of suicide bombing and reports they used child soldiers to fight the Sri Lankan army.

The Electoral Commission has reinstated his People’s Front of Liberation Tigers party to its register, having removing it pending investigation on March 19. More

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