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‘Human rights issues in North-East not settled’ - Penang Deputy Chief Minister

Human rights issues in the Tamil North-East have not yet been settled and the Sri Lankan government is yet to prosecute members of the armed forces responsible for war crimes, said P Ramasamy, the Deputy Chief Minister of Penang.

In a piece entitled “End of war in Sri Lanka, but Tamils still suffering,” the deputy chief minister rebutted the argument that a piece dividend has arrived for the Tamils, stating that “One can hardly talk about the dividends of peace, when major human rights issues concerning the Tamils in the north and east have not been settled yet”.

“The call by international human rights agencies for the Sri Lanka Government to undertake reconciliation measures by accounting for the hundreds of thousands of Tamils who have gone missing, the more than one hundred thousand, mostly innocent women, children and the elderly who were killed during the height of the civil war as well as the rapes and torture inflicted on Tamil women, have not been addressed,” he added.

Mr Ramasamy went on to state,

“The new government of Maithripala Sirisena has failed to punish those responsible for war crimes. Unfortunately, despite calls by international human rights agencies including the United Nations, countries like India and the United States have shown no interest in addressing the human rights violations in Sri Lanka.”

"The war might have ended, but the civilian Tamil population, particularly in the north and east, are being robbed of their properties and land by the Sri Lankan armed forces."

The deputy chief minister was writing in response to a piece by Azman Ujang’s piece entitled “Peace pays off for Sri Lanka” published in The Sun Daily last week. He stated the piece “seems to be an exercise that is echoing the propaganda efforts of the Sri Lanka government rather than critically examining who really benefited from the end of the civil war that raged for more than 30 years”.

Read the full text of Mr Ramasamy’s piece here.