Remembering The Sencholai Massacre — A Gendered Attack on Tamil Women

- Brannavy Jeyasundaram It was August 14, 2006; two years after the earth-shattering tsunami had ravaged Sri Lanka, leaving its people in destitute. The North-East was particularly vulnerable, with limited access to resources and deprivation of aid by the Sri Lankan government — despite being the worst-affected region . In this aftermath stood the Sencholai children’s home for orphans in Mullaitivu. In an effort to shift the dependence on state-sponsored relief, a ten-day workshop on first aid and disaster management was organized by the Mullaithivu and Kandavalai Principals Association. Over 400 young women between the ages of 17 and 20 years old were gathered at the home to learn how to provide for the suffering. At the beginning of day four, shortly after sunrise, four Sri Lankan air force jets dropped sixteen bombs over the home, killing 53 school girls and 3 teachers. Over 150 girls were seriously injured, suffering deep wounds, lost limbs, and severe burns. In a devastating irony, they had become the subject of their study.

Sencholai massacre remembered in Mullaitivu

The massacre of 53 Sencholai schoolgirls by the Sri Lankan air force on August 14, 2006, was remembered today in Mullaitivu. The Northern Provincial Council member T Ravikaran led a remembrance event, where a lamp was lit and flowers laid in memory of the girls.

Jaffna Uni remembers Sencholai massacre

Students and staff at the University of Jaffna today remembered the massacre of 53 schoolgirls in Mullaitivu on August 14, 2006, when the Sri Lankan air force bombed their Sencholai school. Three teachers were also killed in the bombing. To date, no-one has been held to account for the deaths. The children's home had been designated a humanitarian zone and its GPS coordinates had been passed to the Sri Lankan military via the UN children’s agency, UNICEF, and the International Committee for the Red Cross (ICRC). Read more here .

Sencholai massacre - Searching for justice after 12 years

Tamils around the world today remember the 12th anniversary of the massacre of 53 school girls by the Sri Lankan air force. On August 14th, 2006 four Sri Lankan air force jets flew over the Vanni and dropped sixteen bombs were dropped over the Sencholai children's home for orphans, killing 53 school girls and 3 teachers. To date, no-one has been held to account for the deaths.

Sri Lankan Army to discuss diaspora at Defence Seminar

The Sri Lankan Army is to discuss diaspora at its upcoming Defence Seminar in Colombo, in a topic titled “Diaspora Communities amidst Peace and Conflict.” The two keynote speakers of the topic will be the Sri Lankan security forces’ Mullaitivu Commander, and Radhika Coomaraswamy, former United Nations Under-Secretay-General, Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict. The topic will not just be about Sri Lanka, Daily News reports Sri Lanka’s Army Commander as saying. He added that “diaspora communities of other countries too have their conflicts. They have their pros and cons for...

Sri Lankan Army intelligence monitoring social media

Sri Lankan Army intelligence is monitoring ‘changes taking place’ on social media, the country’s Army Commander said last week. Army Commander Mahesh Senanayake said the Army Intelligence Unit was monitoring changes “due to the fact that could have an impact on the security of the people and the country”, Daily News reports. The commander said that this would be a topic at Sri Lanka’s upcoming Defence Seminar in Colombo.

Tamil fishing huts and boats set alight, tense situation in Mullaitivu

A tense situation has erupted in Mullaitivu after the huts and boats of Tamil fishermen were set alight on Monday night.

Ancient Tamil temple not off-limits but under Archaeology Dept control

Sri Lankan police have said that access to an ancient Tamil temple in the Vavuniya district would not be restricted as previously announced, but that the land on which the temple is situated would still be under the control of Sri Lanka’s Archaeology Department. After warning locals that the Aathi Aiyanar temple on Vedukkunari Malai in the Nedunkeni-Olumadu area was off-limits and that trespassers risked arrest, Nedunkeni police clarified on Sunday that the temple could still be accessed by worshippers and visitors. However any changes such as constructions or refurbishments would not be...

Govt has no will to hold elections says monitor

Sri Lanka's election monitor, People’s Action for Free and Fair Elections (PAFFREL) said today that the coalition government did not have the political will to hold provincial council elections, highlighting the lack of agreement on the holding of the elections between coalition partners. Eastern Provincial Council in the North-East, along side Sabaragamuwa and North Central provincial councils, has been under the authority of commissioners following the end of its term last September. The Northern Provincial Council's term of office will end this October along side Central and Wayamba...

Estate Tamils did not demand separate state like North - Ranil

Speaking at the opening ceremony of an Indian housing scheme on Sunday, which sees 10,000 homes handed over to the predominantly of Indian origin Tamils in Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka's prime minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe made a point of saying that these Tamils had not called for a separate state like Tamils in the North. “We launched the Suwaseriya Ambulance service all over the country, while the Mahatma Gandhi Housing Scheme, opened today in Nuwara Eliya, had brought equality to all people in the estate sector. People in the plantation sector did not have villages and a house of their own...