Remembering Black July 1983

Today we mark thirty-four years from the horrors of the anti-Tamil pogrom of 1983, when Tamils were killed by Sinhala mobs backed by the then UNP government and state forces. Armed with electoral rolls, Sinhala mobs targeted Tamil homes and businesses looting and ransacking property. Driven from their homes, particularly in Colombo, over 3000 Tamils were massacred, whilst thousands more were effectively deported by the state to the North-East. Eye witness reports described mobs chasing Tamils down the street with knives and setting them alight alive. Many hundreds of women were raped. Tamil political prisoners locked up in Welikada jail, deep within the island's south, were also targeted as prison guards allowed Sinhala inmates to slaughter them.

‘Jaffna holds special significance for Singapore’ – Foreign Minister

Singapore’s Foreign Minister said Jaffna “holds special significance” for his country, during a visit to the region today.

UN Rapporteur: Sri Lanka done 'almost nothing' on accountability; warns of Security Council referral

The Sri Lankan government has done “almost nothing” to hold human rights violators in the military to account said Ben Emmerson, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on human rights and counter-terrorism on Friday, warning it was laying down conditions that may “reignite conflict”. In a press release at the end of a five-day visit to the island, Mr Emmerson criticised the Sri Lankan government for its failure to implement a UN Human Rights Council resolution that it co-sponsored in 2015 and was quoted by Reuters as saying, 'Sri Lanka could face a range of measures, including a referral to the UN Security Council, if it fails to meet commitments it made under a 2015 UN resolution.'

President Sirisena promises families lists of forcibly disappeared will be released

President Maithripala Sirisena promised families of the disappeared he would issue directives to the National Security Council the following day to release lists of surrendees, detainees, and political prisoners that families were demanding. This assurance was given during a meeting between representatives of families of the disappeared from across all eight districts of the North-East and President Sirisena in Jaffna on Monday. The meeting was arranged as a result of demands by the families at demonstrations on the 100 th day of their Kilinochchi protest on May 30. Also in attendance at the...

'Stories of Mullivaikkaal' documentation project launched by Adayaalam Centre for Policy Research

The Adayaalam Centre for Policy Research (ACPR) launched “Stories of Mullivaikaal,” the first series in ACPR’s “Stories of Resilience” project at . The project will document stories of resilience and agency, highlighting narratives other than victimhood within Tamil community, who have exhibited diverse forms of resilience through various stages of Sri Lanka’s unresolved ethnic conflict. See full press release below: Today the Adayaalam Centre for Policy Research (ACPR) launched “Stories of Mullivaikkaal”, the first series in ACPR’s “Stories of Resilience” project...

36 years of burn wounds: The Jaffna Library

Thirty-six years ago today, the Jaffna Public Library, a crown jewel among Tamil cultural institutions and one of the largest libraries in South Asia, burned at the hands of Sri Lankan security forces and state-sponsored mobs.

Tamils mark 'Tamil Genocide Day' on May 18

Eelam Tamils across the homeland and the diaspora commemorate the Mullivaikkal Remembrance Day

Return land, restore dignity

Land is linked to identity, and identity is important to all communities regardless of whether they are from the North or the South. By Aingkaran Kugathasan, for Tamil Guardian | Colombo Subsequent governments in Sri Lanka have manipulated the issue of land for political and economic gains by; promoting the livelihood and well-being of one Community over another (in this case the ethnic majority), providing lands to transnational corporations (TNCs), acquiring lands for security purposes (High Security Zones: HSZ). Both private and state lands of people who have for generations been settled...

UN human rights chief's report says Sri Lanka's progress inadequate, reiterates hybrid court

The measures taken by Sri Lanka since October 2015 have been inadequate to ensure real progress a report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights released on Friday in Geneva concluded, reiterating the need for a hybrid court with international judges and lawyers. Assessing the progress made by Sri Lanka in implementing resolution 30/1 which it co-sponsored at the Human Rights Council the report urged "stronger, tangible results need to be forthcoming without further delay to prevent any further dissipation of hardearned trust." Welcoming the Sri Lankan...