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NPC passes resolution asking UN to investigate genocide of Tamils by Sri Lanka state

08:32 GMT

The Northern Provincial Council passed a resolution today calling on the UN inquiry to investigate the genocide of the Tamil people by the Sri Lankan government and recommend appropriate measures for the International Criminal Court, stating that the Tamil people have no faith in domestic commission.

The resolution, tabled by the chief minister of the province, Justice C V Wigneswaran, was passed with an overwhelming majority around 9.30am local time.

"This resolution provides as overview of the evidence demonstrating successive Sri Lankan governments' genocide against Tamils, and respectfully requests the ongoing United Nations Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Investigation on Sri Lanka (OISL) to investigate the claim of genocide and recommend appropriate investigations and prosecutions by the International Criminal Court (ICC)," the resolution read.

Stating that the "Tamils have no hope for justice in any domestic Sri Lankan mechanism, whether conducted by the Rajapaksa regime, Sirisena regime, or its successor" the resolution called for justice and accountability for the Tamil genocide "to be driven and carried out by the international community".

See full resolution here. Extracts reproduced below:

"Although the OISL investigation is a time-bound effort focused on February 2002 – November 2011, Sri Lanka’s genocide against Tamils began with the island’s independence. Since then, Tamils across Sri Lanka, particularly in the historical Tamil homeland of the NorthEast, have been subject to gross and systematic human rights violations, culminating in the mass atrocities committed in 2009. Sri Lanka’s historic violations include over 60 years of state sponsored anti-Tamil pogroms, massacres, sexual violence, and acts of cultural and linguistic destruction perpetrated by the state. These atrocities have been perpetrated with the intent to destroy the Tamil people, and therefore constitute genocide."

"The obligation to prevent and punish genocide under the Genocide Convention is not a matter of political choice or calculation, but one of binding customary international law. This Council urges OISL to comprehensively investigate and report on the charge of genocide in its submission to the UN Human Rights Council in March 2015. The UN Security Council should refer the situation in Sri Lanka to the International Criminal Court for prosecutions based on war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide. Alternatively or concurrently, domestic courts in countries that may exercise universal jurisdiction over the alleged events and perpetrators, including but not limited to the United States, should prosecute these crimes."

"To this day, Tamils in the NorthEast suffer from Sri Lanka’s ongoing genocide. In some areas of the NorthEast, there is 1 soldier for every 3 Tamils; this level of militarization is utterly unjustifiable, given that war ostensibly ended over 5 years ago. In Tamil-speaking areas, the Sri Lankan military has exponentially increased its role in Tamils’ daily life, expanded the amount of land it controls, and is establishing itself as a permanent, occupying presence. There has been no change in the oppressive level of militarization in the NorthEast with the election of Maithripala Sirisena. The extreme level of militarization uniquely affects Tamil women. There are approximately 90,000 female-headed households in the NorthEast after the end of the armed conflict. These women are especially vulnerable to sexual violence due to the military’s predatory practices. This Council urgently calls upon the international community to create conditions suitable and sustainable to protect the Tamils of the NorthEast Provinces in Sri Lanka from genocide."

"The case of genocide in Sri Lanka is unique among genocides in history because it occurred over several decades and under different governments before intensifying into a no-holds-barred war for nearly three decades and culminating in the mass atrocities of 2009. It is accordingly vital that Sri Lanka’s historic violations against Tamils, in addition to the 2009 attacks, are addressed through an international mechanism in order to combat Sri Lanka’s institutionalized impunity. This international intervention, coupled with action to promote the respect of human rights, is necessary to ensure a sustainable future for self-determination, peace, and justice, in Sri Lanka and for the Tamil people."

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