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Protest in Jaffna shows solidarity with Batticaloa farmers

A protest was held in Jaffna on Tuesday January 16, as demonstrators gathered to demand justice for the beleaguered farmers of Batticaloa, who have faced repeated attacks by Sinhala settlers.

The protest unfolded in front of Nallur Nallai Thirugnanasambandar Atheenam and a crowd that included Members of Parliament D. Siddharthan, Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, former members of Parliament, former members of the Northern Provincial Council, Saiva Maha Sabha members, religious leaders, and concerned members of the public.

This demonstration was in solidarity with a significant protest that took place in the Batticaloa district, where Mayilathamadu and Madhavanai farmers marked the occasion of Thai Pongal by expressing their grievances. The Batticaloa farmers, who have been persistently protesting for 126 days, have been demanding the removal of illegal encroachers from the vital pastureland in Madhavanai and Mayilathamadu.

Read more:

‘Patti Pongal is a black day for Tamil farmers’ – Tamils protest land encroachment by illegal Sinhala settlers

Sri Lankan police and racist Sinhala monk block Tamil MPs in Batticaloa

Sri Lankan police refuse to register complaint after Tamil farmer's cow is shot by Sinhala settlers

The core issues driving the protest date back to at least 2021, as Tamil farmers in Mayilathamadu and Madhavanai have been grappling with the encroachment of their lands and the killing of their cattle by Sinhala settlers. Recent months have seen a surge in tensions, with Sinhalese settlers intensifying their efforts to target the livestock owned by Tamil farmers.

The Jaffna protest served as an expression of solidarity with the farmers in Batticaloa, emphasizing the urgent need for a resolution to the longstanding issues faced by the agricultural community in the North-East. 

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