British MPs join the Tamil community in remembering the tenth anniversary of the Mullivaikkal massacre.
Helen Grant MP for Maidstone and the Weald tweeted and shared an online video message in rememberance of "the terrible Mullivaikkal genocide of innocent Tamils 10 years ago."
Robert Halfon MP for Harlow expressed the importance of commemorating the loss of so many innocent lives.
"The Tamil people suffered a terrible genocide, a terrible loss of family, of friends. 146,000 Tamils disappeared or killed. Over 280,000 put behind barbed wire and treated inhumanely. There must be an investigation of the genocide that took place against the Tamils. There must be a recognition of the genocide that took place against the Tamil people and above all, there must be proper autonomy and recognition of the rights of the Tamil people in Sri Lanka."
In an online video message, Stella Creasy MP for Walthamstow sent her solidarity to the Tamil community in Sri Lanka. Ms Creasy said:
"We’re here in Parliament today to commemorate the Mullivaikkal massacre and recognise the genocide of the Tamil people and we have been talking about the importance of holding the Sri Lankan government to account. For too long this has gone on now, too many UN resolutions being ignored or drawn out. We don’t have the international and independent mechanism we need to get to the bottom of what had happened so those people who lost family member, who do not know where they are, can get the truth and we can also hold to account thos people responsible."
"You have many friends in Parliament determined to continue this fight and we will continue to fight with you, to stand with you until you have both truth and justice."
Ian Stewart MP for Milton Keynes South sends his "deepest thoughts and sympathies for all who perished in the genocide ten years ago and their loved ones who are remembering who they lost." He urges the world wide community to "redouble its efforts to make sure that justice is done for genocides that have happened."
Theresa Villiers MP for Chipping Barnet released a statement reflecting on the Mullivaikkal massacre:
"After promising safety and protection to the innocent people taking shelter in Mullivaikal, the Sri Lankan government forces the bombed them and attacked with heavy weaponry. It is truly shocking that this occurred even in designated "no fire zones".
The Mullivaikal killings were a war crime and it is disgraceful that no one has been brought to justice for what happened. I will continue to campaign for justice and accountability for the Tamil people and I hope that one day we see those responsible for Mullivaikal answer for their terrible crimes."
Read the full statement here.
In an online video message, Steve Baker MP for Wycombe said:
"Ten years ago today, 30 years of bloody civil war came to an end in Sri Lanka and with so many Tamil families in Wycombe, I know there are British people who were affected by the civil war and whose family were affected who will have lost loved ones. I think the government needs to take extremely seriously your request that the United Nations refer events in Sri Lanka to the International Court of Justice."
British Prime Minister, Theresa May tweeted, "Ten years on from the end of the Sri Lankan conflict we should remember all those who lost their lives. Our relationship with Sri Lanka is important, an after the tragic events at Easter it is crucial communities work together for a peaceful future.”
Alistair Burt MP and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, hopes that "Sri Lanka will realise that only by recognising the agony of the Tamil people at Mullivaikkal, will it be possible truly for the country to move forward."
Mark Field MP, Minister for Asia and Pacific released a statement commenting on the the tenth anniversary of the end of the armed conflict in Sri Lanka.
"On the 10th anniversary of the end of the armed conflict in Sri Lanka, we should take the opportunity to reflect and remember those from across all communities who lost their lives and suffered during the conflict. The UK is a long-standing friend of Sri Lanka and we will continue to support reconciliation and transitional justice in order to build a peaceful, prosperous and stable future."
Read his full statement here.