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British MP speaks out against ‘senseless destruction’ of Mullivaikkal memorial and forced cremation of Muslims

Labour MP for Manchester Gorton, Afzal Khan, has written to the Sri Lankan High Commissioner demanding an end to “senseless destruction” and for the government to “avoid further abuses”.

His statement follows mass protests in Jaffna as authorities destroyed a Mullivaikal memorial commemorating the deaths of tens of thousands of Tamils killed during the armed conflict. Whilst the Vice-Chancellor has given assurances that the destroyed Mullivaikkal memorial monument will be rebuilt, there is concern that he will not fulfil his promises.

Khan also raises concerns over the denial of Muslim burial rights noting that such rights “are an integral and vital aspect of the exercise of freedoms”.  He also notes that despite World Health Organisation guidelines permitting burials and pleas from human rights organisations, “the Sri Lankan government has not responded”.

Khan’s statement also highlights the solidarity expressed the Muslim and Tamil community, as he notes;

“The Muslim community has joined their Tamil brothers and sisters in protest over the government’s actions”.

Similarly across the North-East, Tamils have stood in solidarity with Muslims in protest of the government’s policy of mandatory cremations.

Read his Khan’s full statement here.

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