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In Pictures - Tamils in London march to Downing Street calling for justice for Mullivaikkal

Thousands of Tamils gathered in London on Saturday to mark the 15th anniversary of the Mullivaikkal genocide, a somber occasion remembering the tragic events that transpired in May 2009. The events called for justice and the recognition of Eelam Tamil self-determination, with a significant turnout demonstrating the ongoing demand for accountability and recognition of the atrocities faced by the Tamil community.

A rally organised by Tamil Coordinating Committee UK (TCC UK) and Tamil Youth Organisation UK (TYO UK) saw Tamils march from London’s Parliament Square towards Downing Street, the official residence of the UK Prime Minister. Protesters carried placards with messages such as ‘Tamil Eelam is the only solution,’ ‘End Sinhala settlements,’ ‘End militarisation,’ and ‘Free Tamil Eelam,’ highlighting the ongoing political demands and grievances of the Tamil community.

In a symbolic gesture, the Director of TYOUK, Barbara Rajan, hoisted the flag of the United Kingdom, while the national flag of Tamil Eelam was raised by Newton, the coordinator of the TCC UK. The Tamil Eelam flag song resonated in the air as the flags were hoisted outside Downing Street.

Survivors of the Mullivaikkal genocide laid flowers at a symbolic monument set up in front of Downing Street. This poignant act of remembrance was followed by various cultural performances, including poetry readings in Tamil and English, and rousing dance performances.

The event also featured a memorial art competition, with prizes awarded to the winners, reflecting the community’s commitment to honouring the past through creative expression. Attendees were served kanji, a simple rice gruel, which has come to symbolise the starvation wrought upon the victims of Mullivaikkal in May 2009.

A later rally was held at London’s iconic Trafalgar Square, organised by the British Tamils Forum (BTF). The event featured cultural performances, as well as serving kanji and the erection of an informative exhibition on the various challenges faced by Eelam Tamils at the hands of the Sri Lankan state.

Dozens of dancers also took part in a performance at Trafalgar Square. 

See a video of the performance below.

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