Sri Lanka steps up checkpoints around Mullivaikkal memorial site

(PEARL) As Tamils in the homeland travelled to the Mullivaikal memorial site to commemorate Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day, People for Equality and Relief in Lanka (PEARL) documented the proliferation of Sri Lankan military checkpoints at key locations, situated along roads leading to the site. PEARL tweeted earlier today, “Tamils right to memorialization is continuously suppressed by the Sri Lankan state, with arbitrary court orders and especially surveillance, intimidation and harassment by security forces. Unimpeded memorialization has been one of the fundamental demands of the Tamils.” On...

Sri Lanka officially defaults for first time in its history

Sri Lanka has officially defaulted on its international debt for the first time in its history amidst warnings of accelerating inflation, as the island’s economic crisis continues. Colombo had a 30-day grace period to make a payment of approximately US$78m, but that expired on Wednesday, as tens of thousands of Tamils across the North-East marked Tamil Genocide Day. The next day, Sri Lanka was officially into what some analysts called a “hard” default. According to the Financial Times, Sri Lanka has now become the first Asia-Pacific country in decades to default on foreign debt. Earlier today...

Human Rights Watch urges QUAD leaders to prioritise human rights crisis in Sri Lanka

Ahead of the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue Alliance’s (QUAD) meeting on 22 May, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has urged leaders of the four-member states to address (the United States, India, Japan and Australia) to address democratic backsliding in Asia. “The Quad needs to place Asia’s massive human rights and humanitarian crises at the heart of its discussions and decisions,” said John Sifton, Asia advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. He further added: “Although each has vastly different causes and features, the human rights crises in Afghanistan, Myanmar, North Korea, and Sri Lanka should...

Editorial: Recognition overdue

Yesterday was Tamil Genocide Day, a day of solemn remembrance and collective mourning. Across the Tamil homeland and around the world, millions commemorated their kith and kin who were deliberately and systematically massacred by the Sri Lankan state. This year, as flames were lit and flowers laid across the North-East, political turmoil continues to rage across the South. Whilst Colombo’s politicians tussle for power, international focus remains on whether Sri Lanka will be able to climb out of the crisis in which it has landed. May 18, more than any other day, served as a reminder that...

If Modi was in power, Mullivaikkal would not have happened claims BJP

The head of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Tamil Nadu claimed that if Narendra Modi was the Indian prime minister in 2009 the massacres at Mullivaikkal would not have happened, as he controversially addressed a genocide memorial event this week. K Annamalai, who recently returned from a visit to Jaffna , told the crowd in Chennai that there was “no one other than Narendra Modi” to solve the Eelam Tamil conflict in Sri Lanka. “The BJP's position is not to create problems but to solve them,” he added. “India is carefully adjusting the Sri Lankan problem like a sari falling on a thorn.” The...

Danish Tamils rally in Copenhagen to demand justice for Tamil genocide

Tamils in Denmark held a rally in Copenhagen today to mark 13 years since the massacre at Mullivaikkal and to demand justice for the war crimes committed by Sri Lanka. They rallied towards Kongens Nytorv before gathering outside Danish parliament where attendees laid flowers to pay their respects to the victims of the Tamil genocide. Mullivaikkal kanji was also served at the end of the event to remember the struggles faced by Tamil trapped in the No Fire Zones in May 2009. See more photograohs below:

PEARL calls for justice and accountability for Sri Lanka's crimes on Tamil Genocide Day

People for Equality and Relief in Lanka (PEARL) called on the international community to push Sri Lanka "to take meaningful steps toward achieving justice and accountability for its past and ongoing crimes, demilitarisation, and a sustainable, long-term political solution for the Tamil people" as the Tamil nation marks Tamil Genocide Day. In a statement, the advocacy organisation highlighted that Sri Lanka's lack of accountability "has enabled the brutality of the Sri Lankan state to flourish such that its violence — which has always targeted Tamils on the island — has now turned against the...

'A demilitarisation of the traditional Tamil speaking homelands...a political settlement that respects the right to self-determination' - Sam Tarry MP

Speaking at the Mullivaikkal Remembrance event in London Sam Tarry, Labour MP and shadow minister for Buses and Local Transport, called on the UK government to apply targeted sanctions on those responsible for human rights abuses and stressed the need for demilitarisation across the Tamil homelands. He added, "We know that Sri Lanka is engulfed in its worst economic crisis in its entire history... one of the reasons the economic crisis is so severe is because the government of Sri Lanka billions of billions of pounds to keep one of the world's largest standing army in post and why do they...

Canada's Parliament recognises Tamil Genocide in landmark motion

Canada's House of Commons unanimously adopted a motion recognising May 18 as Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day, in a landmark move making it the first parliament in the world to recognise the Tamil genocide.

'Tamils must be given justice and the right to self-determination' - US Senator

Marking Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day, US Democratic Senator Wiley Nickel expressed his solidarity with the Tamil people and highlighted their "right to self-determination, to peacefully and democratically determine their own political future" The North Carolina Senator added "Today, Tamils in Sri Lanka and around the world are commemorating Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day. Tamils must be given justice and the right to self-determination, to peacefully and democratically determine their own political future." Today, #Tamils in Sri Lanka and around the world are commemorating #...

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