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Tamil diaspora organisations look to universal jurisdiction to prosecute Sri Lanka’s war criminals

Diaspora organisations across the world have resolved to support universal jurisdiction actions against war criminals suspected of involvement in Sri Lanka’s genocide of Tamils.

In a message released to mark New Year’s Day 2018, US Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC), People for Equality and Relief in Lanka (PEARL), British Tamils Forum (BTF) and Australian Tamil Congress (ATC) said they “resolve to expedite justice and expand relief for the survivors of Sri Lanka’s genocide against Tamils”.

The joint statement went on to state that the organisations would “use all available diaspora resources to support action against accused war criminals in Sri Lanka through universal jurisdiction”.

“To this end, we call upon the international community to strongly act, including executing travel bans on the accused and seeking detentions and prosecutions when identified war criminals travel to or through their countries,” it added.

The statement also highlighted in Sri Lanka following up on consensus UN Human Rights Council Resolution 30/1which called for the establishment of a credible accountability mechanism with strong international participation to investigate war crimes.

“We bring to the attention of the international community that, two years after Resolution 30/1, the Sri Lankan government has failed to implement even a single key mechanism for Transitional Justice,” it said.

The statement concluding by saying,

“We urge the High Commissioner for Human Rights to issue specific alternative measures to address Sri Lanka’s non-compliance with the Human Rights Council resolutions, including possible referral to the UN Security Council”.

See the full text of the statement here.