As Ambihai Selvakumar enters her 13th day of hunger-striking, she has garnered international support from politicians across the globe.
Ambihai K Selvakumar, a director of the International Centre for the Prevention of Genocide (ICPPG), has refused food and only having water, as she called on the international community to act and “save our kith and kin back home in Tamil Eelam”. Her health has continued to deteriorate, causing great concern amongst family, friends and the local community who are calling for her to conclude her hunger strike and for the British government to respond.
Minister of State for South Asia, Lord Ahmad
Responding to a letter from Christy Nilani Kandeeban, a spokesperson from the International Centre for the Prevention of Genocide (ICPPG) and British Tamil hunger striker Ambihai Selvakumar, British Minister of State for South Asia Lord Ahmad maintained that the UNHRC resolution would ensure that accountability in Sri Lanka would be kept “firmly on the UNHRC agenda”. In his statement, he highlighted the need to “strengthen the capacity of OHCHR to consolidate, preserve and analyse information and evidence to support future accountability processes”.
Read more here: UN resolution will keep Sri Lanka ‘firmly on agenda’ says UK
Shadow Minister for Asia and the Pacific, Stephen Kinnock
Shadow Minister for Asia and the Pacific, Stephen Kinnock, has called on the British government to ‘comprehensively rewrite’ the current proposed UN resolution and questioned why the government’s review of its Global Human Rights sanctions regime does not include “a single senior Sri Lankan government minister, official or military officer”.
Leader of UK Liberal Democrats, Ed Davey
Leader of the UK Liberal Democrats, Ed Davey, also slammed the proposed resolution to maintain that it “completely fails to rise to the challenge” and called for Sri Lanka to be referred to the International Criminal Court.
MP for Ilford South, Sam Tarry
MP for Ilford South, Sam Tarry, has released a statement in support of Ambihai Selvakumar and maintaining that human rights must be upheld in Sri Lanka
MP for Ealing South, Virendra Sharma
MP for Ealing South, Virendra Sharma, has similarly called on the government to present a stronger resolution and to consider imposing sanctions on senior Sri Lankan officials implicated in human rights abuses.
David Shoebridge, member of the New South Wales Legislative Council
David Shoebridge has issued a statement of support, expressing solidarity with Selvakumar and others who are hunger striking and calling on the international community to take action to address on-going and past human rights abuses.
Commenting on the issue of forced disappearances he notes:
“Sri Lanka continues to have the second highest enforced disappearance rate in the world with between 60,000 and 100,000 enforced disappearances since the 1980s. The majority of these are Tamil people, and families of these people have received little support. No one has been held criminally responsible for these disappearances. Sri Lankan authorities have continued to avoid accountability for these matters”.
Read Shoebridge’s full statement here.
Dr Mehreen Faruqi, Senator for New South Wales
Dr Mehreen Faruqi, also issued a statement of support for those hunger striking and calling for an “independent investigation into allegations of war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity”.
Read Faruqi’s full statement here.
Vijay Thanigasalam, MPP for Scarborough-Rouge Park and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Transportation,
Vijay Thanigasalam has expressed support for the protest urging Canada's Foreign Ministry and the Canadian Prime Minister to act.
(2/2) I’ve heard many heartbreaking stories of the genocide and Tamil mothers' mental trauma right here in my own riding. On behalf of my constituents, I urge the Canadian Foreign Ministry to work with your counterparts in the UK and help save this mother. @JustinTrudeau pic.twitter.com/qcTNFHS6wZ
— Vijay Thanigasalam (@VijayThaniMPP) March 7, 2021