‘Stop, stop genocide!’ - Hundreds of British Tamils protest against Sri Lankan president at COP26

Hundreds of British Tamils gathered in Glasgow today, where world leaders were attending the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26, to protest against the presence of Sri Lanka's president and accused war criminal Gotabaya Rajapaksa. “Go back Gotabaya!” chanted the protestors, as they lined the south side of the River Clyde directly across the from COP26 conference venue, waving Tamil Eelam flags and holding placards denouncing the Sri Lankan president.

An early wake up call for Rajapaksa as protestors gather outside hotel

As the sun rose over the DoubleTree Hilton hotel in Dunblane this morning, Sri Lanka’s war crimes accused president was in for a surprise awakening as dozens of protestors gathered outside, calling for his arrest over his role in war crimes and genocide. The president, former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, was visiting Scotland for the UN COP26 climate summit that is currently underway and is scheduled to deliver an address later today.

‘Rajapaksa of Sri Lanka, Wanted for Genocide’ – Scottish Parliament lit up ahead of Gotabaya visit

Projections across Scotland, including on the Scottish Parliament Building in Edinburgh, called for international accountability for the Tamil genocide in Sri Lanka ahead of the island’s president Gotabaya Rajapaksa visiting the country next week. “Wanted for Genocide, President of Sri Lanka,” warned the projections which were placed in several locations across Scotland.

How Sri Lanka’s CID tried to take down Tamil Guardian’s Twitter

In December 2020, Twitter notified the editors of the Tamil Guardian that Sri Lanka’s Criminal Investigations Department had formally written to the social media platform, calling for posts by the news website to be removed. “In the interest of transparency, we are writing to inform you that Twitter has received a request from Sri Lanka's Criminal Investigation Department,” reads an email from Twitter sent on Monday, December 7 th 2020.

Submission filed with International Criminal Court to investigate Sri Lanka

A landmark legal submission has been filed with the International Criminal Court (ICC) calling on the Chief Prosecutor to “investigate and in due course arrest” several senior Sri Lankan officials for crimes against humanity. The submission, filed by Global Rights Compliance LLP on behalf of 200 Tamil victims in the United Kingdom, is being made under Article 15 of the Rome Statute, which allows the prosecutor to initiate investigations “on the basis of information on crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court”.

‘Gotabaya Rajapaksa is coming to your city,’ warns advert in Scottish national paper

A full page advert in this morning’s The Herald warns the people of Scotland that Sri Lankan president Gotabaya Rajapaksa, who stands credibly accused of war crimes and genocide, will be coming to Glasgow next week.

Beth Van Schaack nominated for US Ambassador at Large for Global Criminal Justice

Dr Beth Van Schaack, an esteemed human rights lawyer and academic that has written extensively on accountability and justice in Sri Lanka, has been nominated by US president Joe Biden for the post of Ambassador at Large for Global Criminal Justice at the Department of State. See more of her work on accountability in Sri Lanka below.

Colin Powell, Sri Lanka and the road to Mullivaikkal

Powell in Colombo, 2005. This week, former US Secretary of State Colin Powell passed away from COVID-19 related complications, aged 84 years old. Powell will be remembered as being the first African-American US Secretary of State and also for his role in garnering international support for the US invasion of Iraq. We look back on his interactions and remarks on Sri Lanka, the faltering peace process between the Sri Lankan government and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) and Washington’s support for Colombo that empowered the Rajapaksa regime and its military offensive.

British Tamils pay tribute to murdered parliamentarian Sir David Amess

British Tamils from across the country have paid tribute to Sir David Amess, MP for Southend West and member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils, who was stabbed to death whilst meeting with his constituents at a church in Leigh-on-Sea. In response to his tragic death, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson expressed the country's sorrowing stating "our hearts are full of shock and sadness" at the loss of "one of the kindest" people in politics. He further added that Amess had an "outstanding record of passing laws to help the most vulnerable".

Sri Lanka eyes up 2026 Commonwealth Games bid

The Sri Lankan government is considering launching a bid to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games according to a report in the BBC, following a previous failed attempt under Mahinda Rajapaksa in 2011 and ongoing controversy over the island’s human rights record. The BBC quoted “insiders” as stating that Sri Lanka, alongside Australia, Canada and India and Sri Lanka have “expressed interest in staging the 2026 Games but, as yet, a host has not been secured”. The next set of games in 2022 are set to be held in Birmingham in the United Kingdom.