9 August, 2020

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Callum Accused GoSL Of Attempting To Suppress The Truth About War Crimes

The producers of the feature documentary No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka have condemned an unsuccessful attempt by the Sri Lankan government to prevent the screening of the film as part of the Film Southasia film festival in Nepal. The film’s director Callum Macrae accused the government of attempting to suppress the truth about their complicity in war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Callum Macrae

“The government has constantly assured the international community – and in particular the members of the Commonwealth – that they will investigate the serious allegations war crimes and crimes against humanity which we exposed in No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka,” Macrae said today.  “In practice though, they seem more concerned with travelling the world attempting to suppress our film – and prevent anyone from seeing the evidence of these crimes.”

“I am glad to say that so far they have not succeeded.”

This latest incident – which follows a similar unsuccessful bid to stop the film being screened in Malaysia (see below) began yesterday, when the Nepali authorities gave the organisers of the Film Southasia festival just 24 hours notice that they must not show No Fire Zone and two other Sri Lankan films in their festival as planned.

Film Southasia issued an immediate statement: “We announce with great regret that the Sri Lankan Government has pressurised the Nepali authorities to stop the screening of all three documentaries from Sri Lanka selected for the Film Southasia ’13 festival.”  They described the attempted ban as “ an action that goes against the freedom of expression and the right of documentary filmmakers to exhibit their work.”  The other two films were shorts by the respected Sri Lankan/British documentary maker and photographer Kannan Arunasalam.

Despite this attempt to ban the films the organisers have announced that No Fire Zone will now be screened at a private venue, at Yala Maya Kendra, Kathmandu, Nepal, on Sat 5 Oct 6:30pm

No Fire Zone is a devastating indictment of the Sri Lankan government’s role in the massacres at the end of the Sri Lankan war. The culmination of a three year long investigation, it contains a mass of carefully authenticated evidence – including video, photographic and eyewitness accounts – of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the last few months of the Sri Lankan civil war in 2009.

It describes, in harrowing detail, how in January 2009, the government of Sri Lanka encouraged thousands of Tamil civilians to gather in a  series of what they called “No fire zones” – and then subjected them to deliberate, sustained shelling.  They compounded this by deliberately denying adequate supplies of food and medicine into the area.  No-one knows how many died, but one UN report suggested it could have been as many as 40,000.  A later UN report suggested the total could have reached 70,000 or even more.  No Fire Zone also examines the role of the Tigers in the tragedy revealing how the agony of the trapped Tamil  civilians was further compounded by the Tigers who refused to let those  who wanted to leave the zones from doing so – even, on occasion, shooting at those who tried.

This new attempt to ban No Fire Zone follows a similar move in Malaysia where a screening of the film was raided by between 30 and 40 members of the Malaysian Censorship Board and police officers – again on the instigation of the Sri Lankan Government.  However they did not succeed in preventing the screening.

Last month Lena Hendry of Malaysian Human Rights organisation Pusat Komas appeared in court and was charged for organizing the screening. She faces a maximum of three years in jail if convicted.

In protest over the attempts to silence the film another Malaysian organization Lawyers for Liberty, screened the film again.  Yet more screenings are now planned.

Following attempts to stop the Nepalese screening No Fire Zone, the film’s Director, Callum Macrae, issued the following statement.

“Once again the Sri Lankan government has shown its true colours. While telling the world that it is investigating the allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity  – it is in practice mounting an international campaign to deny the truth and silence the witnesses. Film South Asia deserves every credit for refusing to stop the screenings, instead moving them to another venue.

“The Sri Lankan regime of Mahinda Rajapaksa and his brothers is determined to suppress the evidence of these crimes and their responsibility for them.  That is why the Sri Lankan government wants to stop the world seeing our film. From the UN to the European parliament, from Malaysia to Nepal they have tried  to stop the screenings.  I am glad to say they have never succeeded.

“In Sri Lanka itself they are desperately trying to silence any critics.  Military repression of the Tamils in the north of the country is ongoing.  The Tamil homelands are being ethnically re-engineered by plantation of majority Sinhala families and soldiers. Land grabs are rampant.  In the south anyone who speaks out against the regime is silenced. The independence of the judiciary is under attack.  Journalists are being threatened and intimidated. Government supporters are now turning on other ethnic minorities in Sri Lanka – in particular, they are targeting Muslims.

In November the leaders of the Commonwealth will gather in Sri Lanka for the bi-annual Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). 

If those leaders want the Commonwealth to retain any credibility, they must not turn a blind eye to the crimes of their hosts – or their attempts to deny the truth and silence their critics.   For our part we pledge that we will continue to take this film around the world – and we will continue to tell the truth about what happened. “

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    “Humanitarian operation, No fire zones and zero tolerance to civilian casualties” are blatant lies of the Sri Lankan regime during the war that ended in 2009.

    These are comparable to Joseph Goebbels’ grand lies in Nazi Germany.

    Callum, please keep up your noble effort to expose those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity/genocide and bring them to justice.

    This is the best way to honor tens of thousands of innocent civilians massacred during the war.

    We thank you so much.

    Thiru

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      Well said Thiru!

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      Callum MacRae

      “These are comparable to Joseph Goebbels’ grand lies in Nazi Germany.”
      “Callum, please keep up your noble effort to expose those responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity/genocide and bring them to justice.”

      Please add Henry Kissinger and the WMD Lies, Characters of Iraq War to your list.

      The Trial of Henry Kissinger

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Trial_of_Henry_Kissinger

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/13/tony-blair-iraq-war-wmd-a_n_390464.html

      Former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s recent admission that he would have invaded Iraq even if he knew from the start that it did not have weapons of mass destruction has sparked public outrage and calls for his prosecution for war crimes in the ongoing war inquiry, the AFP reported.

      Blair’s administration originally used WMDs to justify going to war, leaving the public feeling that the former minister had entered Iraq under false pretenses, using the language that was most convenient at the time.

      Blair maintains that Saddam Hussein’s presence in the region would have been enough of a threat to justify the war.

      “I would still have thought it right to remove him. I mean, obviously you would have had to use and deploy different arguments about the nature of the threat,” Blair told the BBC.

      “It was the notion of him as a threat to the region, of which the development of WMD was obviously one, and because you’d had 12 years of United Nations to and fro on this subject, he used chemical weapons on his own people — so this was obviously the thing that was uppermost in my mind,” Blair continued.

      Blair’s admission has gotten a reaction from all corners– even Defense Secretary Bob Ainsworth told the BBC he was “a little bit” surprised by Blair’s comments.

      “I supported the war in Iraq based on the arguments that were put at the time and a big part of those arguments was – and I firmly believed that they existed – was the existence of WMD at that time,” Ainsworth said.

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    The leaders of the Commonwealth should not turn a blind eye for the war crimes against srilankan Tamils perpetrated by the host country. Those who attend the conference too will be regarded as war criminals.
    (Birds of the same feather flock together)

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    This jobless pig should investigate war crimes by the British if he has nothing better to do .

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      Abaya Premawardena, the Great Shit Shop Millionaire,do not call others pigs because they might work into your ancestry.

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    Is it not against the freedom of expression to ban the Madrass Cafe? Is not against the freedom of expression to stop Mahinda Rajapakse speak at Oxford Union? Will McTripe respond and protest?
    Typical of English to muck rake, but why not McTripe air British atrocities in many parts of the world, and demand compensation to the families of victims?
    A passing statement on LTTE atrocities, only to be seen as balanced in critism. Yet, more than happy to accept LTTE remuneration and perks. Scum!

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    Callum, you are the guy suppressing The Truth About SL. Its LTTEs properganda that is comparable to Joseph Goebbels’ grand lies which Callum & Channel 4 is taking further. Prabhakaran was a combination of Hitler and Stalin ! Which you don’t like to admit.OMG what a investgative journalist !

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    The world must know the truth, that all. Only an independent investigation with representatives of all the parties involved will establish the truth. Callum Macroe, your service to humanity is and will be appreciated by those who respect human rights and humanity. In former Yugoslavia, Palestine, Myanmar, Indonesia and other countries where injustices are committed against hapless and numerically inderior communities people like you ventured to expose the truth and saw justice done. In Sri Lanka, too, you will succeed. Best wishes.

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      You are absolutely correct. Mass murderers must be hunted down and punished.

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      ela kolla

      Brilliant

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        Native I believe you have to give this Kela Kolla some lessons on Civility. Can you nominate someone for the Job. What about as an ‘Abiththaya’ in a BBS temple. He will learn to pronounce his vowels well, especially ‘O’.

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    Ignore his antics and his paymasters will drop him when he doesn’t generate the publicity. Big deal screening it in some supporter’s house!

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    Callum,
    Since you are accusing the Sri Lanka Government of silencing its critics, what do you think your buddies are doing in the UK stopping the Madras Café from being screened?

    Madras café was to have opened in the U.K. on August 28, 2013 in theatres owned by Cineworld, Odeon and Vue.

    By August 24, protests began outside the head office of these theatres, organised by Sri Lankan Tamil groups led by the Tamil Youth Organisation (U.K.). Carrying placards that said, “Inciting violence is not entertainment,” “Ban Madras Café”, “Ban hate speech”, its members shouted slogans and burnt copies of the film’s posters.

    The anti-Madras Café campaign went on the Facebook page of the Tamil Youth Organisation. An online campaign called on Tamils to sign a petition against the film, and to telephone theatres to protest the screenings.

    When the cinemas complied with this demand, exultant messages appeared on the page.

    Not only did they cave in, the theatres have been surprisingly circumspect in commenting on their decision.

    A senior executive from Odeon, in response to a question from The Hindu, merely said her company “does not wish to cause any offence to any local community groups and hence took the decision.”

    A Cineworld spokesperson was equally guarded. “Our policy is to show a wide range of films to different audiences. However, following customer feedback and after working with the film distributors, we have decided not to show Madras Café.”

    So Callum, do you want some customer feedback?

    And where is Jon “champion of free speech” Snow, when we need him?

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      Madras Cafe was a distortion of the truth, whereas No Fire Zone movie is the truth.

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        The protesters were claiming the film portrays the LTTE as a terrorist organisation, but the LTTE is a terrorist organisation, banned in the UK.
        Yes the truth hurts.

        If we start banning film because some segment might be shown in the negative light, most films cannot be shown. What about all the films where Muslims are shown as terrorists and countries like Pakistan are shown to promote them, then UK should ban all those as well.

        What about the previous movies where Russians or Germans were villains, should they all be banned as well?

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        For the terrorist No Fire Zone is truth

        thiru earn hard and give to callum Macrae he will produce hundreds of these photoshop films, so you can satify your fantasy world with Callum Macrae

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        How can Madras Cafe be a distortion of the truth when it never claims to be the truth, but rather a Bollywood movie? You remind me of the people who banned Handangama’s and Vimukthi’s movies because they didn’t know the difference between a movie and a documentary. Callum however claims his movie is a documentary ;)

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    Macrae allegedly was a dustbin collector , prior to his entry to Channel 4 . He continues to collect garbage to titillate the public with his fantasy and lies . His other accomplice ,is no better . This duo can set the world on fire.

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      Yes Sarojini,

      This duo can set the world on fire: If only truth can set the world opinion on fire!

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      sarojini why not use your own name instead of hiding behind a woman.I know your payment depends on the garb age you spout but this is not the forum for you.

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        Kay who are you to decide who should be in this forum ??? who decided that you could be in this forum ?

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