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UK politicians praise Tamil community in Thai Pongal wishes

British politicians from across the political spectrum praised the Tamil community for their contribution to life in the United Kingdom in their Thai Pongal wishes. 

Boris Johnson, the UK's prime minister, thanked the British Tamil community for their contribution towards the coronavirus pandemic response in the country. 

"Thank you for everything you're doing in our struggle against COVID, because throughout this crisis your values of hard work, discipline and community spirit have really shone brightly," he said in a video message. 

Read more here: UK Prime Minister praises Tamils for COVID response in Thai Pongal message. 

Leader of the Opposition, Keir Starmer, expressed his gratitude "for the huge contribution the Tamil community has made during the pandemic."

He also raised concerns over Sri Lanka's decision to withdraw from the 2015 UN Human Rights Council Resolution on accountability, justice and reconciliation and called on the UK "to lead and be a strong voice on international accountability."

Read more here: UK Labour leader raises 'deep concerns' over Sri Lanka during Thai Pongal message. 

Sir Ed Davey, Leader of the Liberal Democrats tweeted his Thai Pongal wishes and added that the "contribution of British Tamils to our country and society has been exemplary, with the hard work, intelligence and dedication of so many amazing British Tamils," in a statement.



Elliot Colburn, Conservative MP for Carshalton and Wallington and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils (APPGT) celebrated the contribution of the Tamil community in the UK for their role in "stepping up to care for COVID patients in our hospitals and care homes; helping to deliver the ever important vaccine and testing facilities; volunteering to support the most vulnerable in our society and much, much more."

Commenting on the upcoming United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) session, Colburn said he hopes that Sri Lanka "will reflect on their recent actions and renew their commitment to addressing human rights abuses."

Sam Tarry, Labour MP for Ilford South, wished Tamils for Thai Pongal and condemned the demolition of the Mullivaikkal memorial at the University of Jaffna, highlighting that Tamils in the North-East continue to face "repression in their attempts to remember their war dead."

Read more here: 'Sri Lankan officials must face sanctions' - Sam Tarry reaffirms commitment to Tamil self-determination during Thai Pongal message.

Bob Blackman, Conservative MP for Harrow East joined others in condemning the destruction of the Mullivaikkal monument. "There is no excuse for this. This was a peaceful monument It wasn't meant to be anything else than commemorating all those wo very sadly lost their lives." 

"It's difficult to restore a monument after it's been wrecked but I think it's absolutely right that we call on the Sri Lankan government to restore that monument."

Paul Scully, Conservative MP for Sutton and Cheam and Minister of State sent his thanks to those in the Tamil community "who have been on the front line in our COVID-19 response, in the Health Service, caring for those people who have been so ill and some of whom have lost their lives in that process. But also those of you that have fed the nation, that transported the nation and been working in really critical roles."

Theresa Villiers, Conservative MP for Chipping Barnet, wished her Tamil constituents a happy Pongal. 

Andrew Rosindell, Conservative MP for Romford sent his wishes to the Tamil community across the UK. 

"The Tamil people have gone through a huge amount in recent years and throughout history but I know that they are resilient and determined and they will defend their rights and I will back them all the way," he added. 

Robert Halfon, Conservative MP for Harlow, wished the Tamil community a "very happy , prosperous harvest season and a prosperous new year."

Jackie Doyle-Price, Conservative MP for Thurrock highlighted the change in celebrations this year due to the pandemic but "makes us appreciate previous  years and look forward to future ones."

Stephen Baker, Conservative MP for High Wycombe praised the "fabulous" Tamil community in his constituency in his Thai Pongal wishes. 

Robert Buckland, MP for South Swindon said Thai Pongal is "very much part of the important culture of Tamils that we celebrate today and indeed throughout the year."

Keith Prince, Conservative Member of the London Assembly for Havering and Redbridge expressed his gratitude to British Tamils "for the wonderful contributions that they make to London and indeed to the whole of the United Kingdom."










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