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Murugathasan's sacrifice remembered 15 years on

Murugathasan Varnakulasingham, the 26 year old who self-immolated in protest outside the United Nations in Geneva over the inaction of the international community in the face of the 2009 genocide of Tamils, was remembered in London today. 

Murugathasan's parents laid a flower garland on his tombstone and the national flag of Tamil Eelam was raised to honour his sacrifice. 

In his parting letter, Murugathasan wrote: 

"We Tamils displaced and all over the world loudly raised our problems and asked for help before [the] international community in your own language for three decades. But nothing happened[...] So I decided to sacrifice my life by burning myself before the international community and the UN headquarters." 

"The flames over my body will be a torch to guide you through the liberation path," Murugathasan wrote in his letter. 

Following his death, Murugathan's brother-in-law, Thavaroopan Sinnathamby, told the BBC:

"He was a refugee in his own country before he came here, so he knew the pain of what the people were going through. He'd go to the demonstrations and no-one was bothering and he wanted to make an impact. I think he wanted to give his life, we feel proud for that."

At the commemoration in London, candles were lit for other Tamils who also sacrificed their lives in the Tamil struggle for liberation. 


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