The genocide of Tamils cannot be forgotten by the Tamils all over the world. The oppression against the Tamils commenced immediately after Sri Lanka [then called Ceylon] gained its independence on February 04, 1948. It should be noted that the Tamils Kingdom of Jaffna flourished for more than 800 years before the arrival of Portuguese in 1621, at that time three Kingdoms existed in Sri Lanka [then Ceylon]
1. Kotte Kingdom [Sinhalese Kings ruled]
2. Kandy Kingdom [Sinhalese Kings ruled]
3. Jaffna Kingdom of [Tamil Kings ruled]
The Portuguese ruled Sri Lanka as three units from 1621 to 1658
The Dutch ruled Sri Lanka as three units from 1658 to 1795
The British ruled Sri Lanka as three units from 1795 to 1833 and in 1833 the British amalgamated the three units as one unit for their easy administration. And ruled until independence in 1948.
Unfortunately the British handed over the entire administration [including the Tamils Jaffna Kingdom] to the majoritarian Sinhala Buddhist political leaders where most of these leaders were and are in the mindset to make Sri Lanka a BUDDHIST/SINHALESE NATION.
The disturbing feature of Sri Lanka’s post independence is the state organized violence in the form of anti-Tamil riots and pogroms periodically unleashed on the Tamil people in 1956, 1958, 1961, 1977, 1981 and 1983, The last in 1983 referred as ‘Holocaust’ or: Black July 1983” witnessed over 400 to 500 Tamils killed and billions of rupees worth of their properties and business establishments destroyed. And from 2006 to 2009 more than 70,000 Tamils were brutally massacred as per United Nations estimates.
Please note that the Canadian Government, Tamil Nadu State in India and the Northern Provincial Council already passed laws to this effect.
On May 20, 2022, Canada’s Parliament has created a day to recognize the genocide of Tamil people in Sri Lanka. Parliament unanimously adopted the motion to make May 18 of each year Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day.
Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly [India]
The Tamil Nadu State Assembly of India on March 27, 2013 passed a unanimous Resolution “Calling for an Independent International Investigation into the crime of genocide and other violations. It also requested the Central Government of India to impose economic sanctions and arrange for a referendum by Tamils to decide the feasibility of a separate state in the North and East. It also asked the Central Government to stop treating Sri Lanka as a friendly country.”
Northern Provincial Council [Sri Lanka]
The Northern Provincial Council passed a Resolution on February 10, 2015 requesting the UNHRC to investigate the claim of genocide and recommend appropriate investigations and prosecutions by the International Criminal Court.”
Brampton City Council [Canada]
Brampton City Council in Canada passed a Resolution on April 24, 2019 “Recognising the crimes committed against the Tamils in Sri Lanka constitute genocide.” It also recognized May 18 as Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day with request to educate others about the tragic loss of life, land and human rights of the Tamil Nation and the crimes of genocide committed against them.”
The Catalan City Of Barcelona
The Catalan city of Barcelona has called for an investigation into the genocide of Tamils by Sri Lanka, and to recognise the rights of the Tamil people to an independent homeland, Tamil Eelam.
In a resolution voted by the city’s municipal council on January 25, representatives denounced systematic violations against the rights of Tamils, urged the recognition of Tamil sovereignty and called for an end to the Sri Lankan military’s occupation of the Tamil homeland.
British Labor Party Leader Hon. Keir Atarmer
Marking 13 years since the genocide in Mullivaikkal, the UK’s Labour leader has called for Sri Lanka to be referred to the International Criminal Court noting that “the perpetrators of these atrocities still have not been brought to justice”.
His statement comes as British MPs are continuing to demand accountability for the atrocities Tamils have suffered and to impose sanctions on perpetrators such as Sri Lankan army commander, Shavendra Silva, and Defence Secretary, Kamal Gunaratne. Thus far the UK government has failed to impose a single sanction on a Sri Lankan government or military official implicated in war crimes.
It is clear how the genocidal pattern is braided in with the history of the state of Sri Lanka. The slow protracted genocide proceeds with the intent to wipe out the fundamentals of the existence of the Eelam Tamil nation in various aspects and forms. All these crimes are committed to target the Eelam Tamil nation. It is crystalline and obvious, even for an outsider, that the Tamil nation represents the victim of this genocide
Analysing the cause of the genocide in the case of Eelam Tamils, and realising the failure of the International Community to act genuinely and on time has led us to reflect back to the question of whether the crime of genocide is a jurisdictional problem or something that is not applied because of the political discretion the international bodies hold.
*Kumarathasan Rasingam – Secretary, Tamil Canadian Elders for Human Rights Org.