I am 22 years old. My right hand was amputated during the end of the war in Valainjarmadam. I was 10 years old at the time and I became disabled. I am right-handed. It was very difficult to learn to write with the left hand after I lost my right hand. At the beginning no matter how much I tried, my writing didn’t come out well. However, now I am able to use my left hand to do everything I need to do. I sat for Ordinary Level exams twice and now I have passed the A / L exam as well.
As part of a series marking 11 years since the atrocities of Mullivaikkal, land protestors from Keppapilavu shared their reflections on their experiences and the struggles they continue to face. The community has been protesting the military’s occupation of their land continuously since February 2017.
I am from Vadduvaakal, Mullivaaikaal. I was a fisherman before the war. I used to do all my work, no matter how much work I have. I lost both my legs during a Kfir attack during the last days of the war. I wanted to die when I knew that I lost my legs. I asked the doctors at the hospital I was being taken care of, to please kill me with an injection; but they helped me recover.
Phil Miller was a student in university when he first heard the name ‘Keenie Meenie Services’ . “It was about 2010, 2011,” he told the Tamil Guardian in London. “I was involved in visiting asylum seekers in immigration detention centres.” Miller had spoken to Tamils who fled Sri Lanka, but faced an uphill battle in the United Kingdom, where British authorities were still attempting to deport them. “The Home Office was saying it was safe to send Tamils back,” says Miller. “And after the first few deportations, reports emerged that Tamils were being arrested upon arrival and tortured.” “So that got me thinking - why is the UK government sending people to be tortured when supposedly we are a country that respects human rights and opposes torture?” From conversations that Miller had with activists and asylum seekers themselves, the name ‘Keenie Meenie Services’ or KMS began to crop up.
On the morning of September 16th 2008, Benjamin Dix was part of a United Nations convoy that was driving out of Kilinochchi. “Civilians were protesting outside our offices begging us not to leave,” he recalls. “As we drove out that morning a Kfir - a government fighter jet - flew over the top of us and into the Vanni… It almost haunts me”.
The Sri Lankan government announced that Viraj Mendis, the Sinhalese chairperson of the International Human Rights Association – Bremen (IMRV), has been added to their list of known “terrorists” in an updated gazette notification that has been slammed as a "escalation in political repression". Mendis, who joins dozens of other Tamils who have been on the list, is accused of “funding terrorism”. “The listing by the Sri Lankan State of someone whose real crime has been to campaign strenuously against the criminalisation of the Tamil struggle, shows an escalation in political repression,” Mendis...
As part of a series marking the atrocities of Mullivaikkal, families of the disappeared protesting in Kilinochchi shared their reflections on their experiences and the struggles they continue to face a decade on.
As part of a series marking the atrocities of Mullivaikkal, land protestors from Keppapilavu shared their reflections on their experiences and the struggles they continue to face a decade on.
If the Sri Lankan government continues to reject key tenets of a UN Human Rights Council resolution on accountability then “clearly something has to be done in another direction,” UK Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn told the Tamil Guardian in an interview this weekend. “There’s been systematic abuse of the Tamil people,” Corbyn told reporters at the sidelines of the Tamils of Lanka exhibition, organised by the Tamil Information Centre (TIC) in London. “That is very clear. There’s been unbelievable levels of killing of Tamil people from the 1980’s onwards and the massacre which we are...
Roy Samathanam, a Tamil torture survivor, who filed a civil lawsuit against Sri Lanka's former defence secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa, described how his experience of torture at the hands of Sri Lankan security forces "never goes away" speaking in London today.