Sri Lanka’s genocide in 2009 paved the way for Israel’s genocide in Gaza

This week marks the 76th anniversary of the Nakba, when over 700,000 Palestinians were made refugees after they were expelled from their land by armed Israeli settlers. Fifteen years ago, Sri Lanka’s genocide led to the total military occupation of the North-East and an expanding programme of Sinhala settlements. Week after week, I join millions in demanding a ceasefire in Gaza because I come from a long tradition of Eelam Tamils who oppose the occupation of Palestine. We see direct parallels with the Tamil liberation struggle in the Palestinian liberation struggle. Both are rooted in a history that resists settler colonialism, occupation, and genocide. And, we remember the Tamil genocide as we bear witness to the genocide unfolding in Gaza.

'The way out of Sri Lanka’s crisis is tied to Tamil freedom'

In early April, hundreds of thousands of primarily Sinhala protestors filled the streets of Colombo, enduring tear gas and water cannons, as they inched closer to the presidential compounds, demanding the resignation of Sri Lanka’s President, Gotabaya Rajapaksa.

Doug Ford, the Tamil struggle is not for sale

Photograph: Gardiner Expressway, May 10, 2009 Thirteen years ago, I was among tens of thousands in Toronto’s Tamil community who protested the war in Sri Lanka. I remember waking up on Mother’s Day that year to the horrific news that an all-night artillery barrage killed nearly 1,000 people in a single night. After weeks of candlelight vigils, letter-writing campaigns and petitioning, we felt desperate to draw the world’s attention to Sri Lanka’s escalating genocide against the Tamil people. Later that day, thousands of us occupied the Gardiner Expressway . It would become a landmark event in the history of our community.