17 June, 2019

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The Noose Tightens: India To Vote Yes In Geneva, Channel 4 Documentary Screened In New Delhi

By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

News reports datelined 22nd Feb. 2013 announced that according to Sudarshan Nachiappan who led a band of Tamil Nadu Congress MPs in meeting Dr. Manmohan Singh, the Prime Minister of India, was firm and definite at their meeting that he would vote for the US resolution, and emphasize the rights of Tamils, the returning home of Tamils displaced abroad and the restoration of confiscated Tamil properties.

This is a subtle change from the Prime Minister’s previous stance announced in Parliament that India is likely to vote for the US resolution.

In an independent development, a 20-minute extract of the third documentary titled No Fire Zone by Britain’s Channel 4 was screened in New Delhi on Friday at 4:30 in the afternoon for Indian Parliamentarians by Amnesty International at the Constitution Club. A 12-minute segment has been released on www.puthiyathalaimurai.tv

The extensive footage of the documentary cannot be easily dismissed by the Sri Lankan government as concoctions. Heartrending are images of a hospital floor strewn with corpses, a young girl child worried about her missing parents, and young 12-year old Balachandran Prabhakaran while he was alive in the custody of the army and then dead with other bodies (presumably of his bodyguards). The evidence in the videos correlates with the experiences and testimonies of Vanni Tamils. The new footage will surely make the international community want to do something.

An example of how this war ensnares even good people is Prasad Kariyawasam, Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to India, whose Tamil friends swear he is a decent man. He had to lie on TV when he asked rhetorically, why Sri Lankan troops would want to kill civilians. Being from Galle he must be aware of the many Sinhalese civilians killed by the army there in 1989-90. Surely he understands even more easily why the army would ‘want’ to kill Tamils. In India Today’s Headlines Today TV program, he even slipped up, calling the new evidence more substantiated and named Mullivaikal events as in the Easter Province. Given the job he holds, his only choices are to resign or lie for the President. He let himself down by calling the film morphed whereas morphing provides a smooth transition from one image to another and cannot produce the movie images of Colonel Ramesh being interrogated – a movie that would be the most difficult for the government to explain away.

The Col. Ramesh footage melts any heart to see a hardened Tiger cowing down before semi-educated soldiers and addressing them as “Sir” as they ask him for his “live place.” The evidently visible fear and anxiety on his face measure the terror of the army that would have been felt by less hardened Tamils in Mullivaikal and throughout refugees camps in May 2009. The interrogators’ faces are recognizably visible. Within the army, they would be quickly identified, making it awkward for the government. Trophy photos being taken – the undoing of the murderers – is also seen. For Col. Ramesh’s family the images of their father/husband reduced to what we see would only deepen their grief.

If the world ignores this irrefutable record in the documentary (with promises in the documentary of more to come from film-maker Callum Macrae), we might as well stop speaking of rights, justice, peace and accountability – which are a precondition to the reconciliation the government so glibly mouths. 

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    The strategy of the regime – ‘Dont see, dont tell’, by denying access to UN, ICRC, media and humaniitarian agencies towards the end of the war has clearly failed. The evidence has been provided, some by the members of the military themselves.

    Now can all this be denied? Deny the undeniable? These gory scenes doctored or committed by the LTTE themselves? Would people kill their own kith and kin to prove a point? Better to come clean than to lose ones honour and credibility before the world for the sake of protecting a handfull of inhuman racist elements.

    • 0
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      Exactly Safa.

      I have no idea why Sri Lanka needs to protect violent criminals in law enforcement. Rather than just punishing them.

      Benefits of this strategy are hondsomely collected by dispicable LTTE rump overseas.

      GOSL, burst the LTTE propaganda bubble. Search out and punish criminals in our own ranks at once. So called, international agents of the LTTE will have to shut up then.

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        Please note I know Ramesh is a terrorist. It does not justify brutal death in custody.

        Sri Lanka should not have sunk to the level of the LTTE.

        Sri Lankan judiciary and post war process could have easily dealt with likes of Ramesh according to law.

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          Ben Hurling

          “Sri Lanka should not have sunk to the level of the LTTE.”

          I am sorry I could not help but think the whole state of affair since 5th April 1971.

          • 0
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            Native Veddda,

            This is why I think a simple regime change will not resolve grave HR situation in Sri Lanka.

            Though, I would love to see the corrupt Rajapassa clan sent home already tmrw.

            Impunity for crimes for Armed Forces and Police in Sri Lanka is an institution protected by both corrupt UNP and SLFP. This dispicable tradition has deep roots in our society.

            That is the beast we must tame. If we are to see real change.

        • 0
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          In war every one is doing the same thing while saying no civilized government can stoop to the level of terrorists. Haven’t you seen in Afghanistan how US soldiers urinating on the Afghanistan prisoners.How civilians were killed by American soldiers.This happened in every where in places like Palestine,India,in Falkland war,to name a few.I am not justifying those actions what I am simply saying is,it happens every where not only in Srilanka.

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            Moda Man

            Agree. It happens everywhere. We have seen it in Iraq and Afganistan.

            However, Sri Lankans have a 2500 years of civilized, humane history.

            Why follow the West. Rather, we should set an example to the hypocrites in the West.

            Dispicable crimes committed by SL Armed Forces and Police with total impunity must end. Must end now. No excuses required.

            Criminals must face the music. Justice.

            • 0
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              Ben Hurling! It is easy to be wise after the event. This might not be a case of a Sri Lankan soldier aping the actions of Western soldiers. If in fact it was done by a soldier, could it not be the angry reaction of a soldier or soldiers who have been at the receiving end of Tiger Terrorist atrocities over three decades?

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      How can you take the writer seriously when his despicable arrogance based on race and class is so glaring when he says: “The Col. Ramesh footage melts any heart to see a hardened Tiger cowing down before semi-educated soldiers and addressing them as “Sir” as they ask him for his “live place.”

      Ha!

      “Hardened” (euphemism for mass killer of civilians) Ramesh should have more dignity than Sri Lankan soldiers because they are “semi-educated” (euphemism for less-refined, inferior). The writer is even mocking these goday Sinhalayas’ English.

      Is the writer an educated man?

  • 0
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    There is no denying that war crimes and crimes against humanity were committed by both the Sri Lankan military and the LTTE. Geneva Conventions clearly prohibit attack on protected persons which includes civilians.

    Despite these humanitarian law rules and despite the establishment of an international criminal court to deal with individuals responsible for these crimes, we continue to witness these crimes being committed over and over again.

    Look at the carnage in Syria and what happened in Iraq. Only in very extreme cases those perpetrators are brought before international criminal courts. Because of the way international law and international system works it will be extremely difficult to bring to book all perpetrators of war crimes and crimes against humanity to book.

    United States declared “free fire zones” over the whole of Basra and everyone within that city was game for US bombers. How many Iraqi children, women and men were killed in those indiscriminate bombings and in other attacks on civilins who happened to live there? Did the world criticise US or wanted those Americans responsible including President Bush hauled before international criminal courts? Might was right and we only heard feeble voices from some quarters. Again look at what US did in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos. Carpet bombing by B-52 bombers destroyed not just innocent civilians but destroyed their livelihood and their habitat. Cambodians are still loosing their limbs to buried umexploded American bombs dropped couple of decades ago. This dastardly acts of the Americans went generally unnoticed. Did any one try to haul the US Presidents or the US Generals who prosecuted the Indo-China War before international criminal courts? By refusing to sign the Rome Statute, US has ensured that its leaders and military personnel are beyond the reach of international justice.

    If you look at world history, only defeated powers and their leaders and generals have faced international criminal courts. In the past only Gemans, Japanese or Italians were brought before Nuremburg or Tokyo criminal courts. Never an American or a British or French were brought before any of the past criminal courts. If you look at the recent past, only leaders and generals of emerging states like Serbia or some African states like Rwanda or Sierra Leone have been hauled before the international courts. That is how the lop sided international system works.

    In the case of Sri Lanka, I can understand true lovers of humanity criticising these war crimes and crimes against humanity, but how can the LTTE remants and their voiciferous backers in the West including the so-called Prime Minister TGTE Rudrakumaran be heard to criticize the SL military and those in command of the SL military machine. I do not condone the SL military or their leaders for their part for what ever happened in the months and weeks before the end of Eelam War IV. I am only a realist and see that nothing worthwhile could be achieved by the Tamils by taking those Sri Lankan soldiers and others before an international criminal court.

    The wounds created by three decades of war should heal. This can be achieved by true reconciliation not by retributions. What is needed in Sri Lanka is some kind of Truth Commission and if desired an internal international crimes court to try well documented cases of breaches of humanitarian and human rights laws.

    As for the Indian Congress MPs requesting their Prime Minister to vote for the US resolution on Sri Lanka, my only comment is that these guys are compelled to say or do something in the face of irrational and emotional outbursts from the Tamil Nadu Dravidian parties. None of those Congress MPs including Natchiappan have a clear grasp of the problems of the Sri Lankan Tamils. Sri Lankan Tamil issue has become a very emotional issue that could deliver votes for these Tamil Nadu politicians facing the Lok Sabha elections next year. These Congress MPs have to go with this emotional anti-Sri Lanka tide that is sweeping Tamil Nadu.

    I hope New Delhi does not make any rash decisions by blindly supporing any US resolution against Sri Lanka. India can still play a major role in getting the Sri Lankan government deliver on its promise to fully impelement the 13th amendment in the spirit of the Indo-Sri Lankan Accord. This is possible not by voting against Sri Lanka but by initiating a quiet diplomatic dialogue with Colombo. India should make use of this opportunity at a time when US and EU are applying lot of pressure on Sri Lanka by assuring its support for Colombo provided MR give a firm commitment to go ahead and implement 13th amendment fully which include the merger of Northern and Eastern provinces. MR should realize that he cannot any more postpone the settlement of the Tamil problem once for all.

    • 0
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      Naga,

      Your kilometers long harangues will finally come to a rest soon at Geneva! Take a long breath now!

  • 0
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    Remember… Nachchiyappan was a fan of th Regime until recently. He even messed with a meeting of Sri Lankan Tamil Party leaders in Chennai. Politics or not, trouble is brewing. Shall we let Rajapakses pay for their sins and take care of the country for the innocent people, who were in pain with LTTE over 30 years and Rajapkses since?

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    Naga,
    Thanks for your well reasoned and sensible comments. All wars are evil and inhumane. They represent and bring out what is worst in man. They also bring out the worst in men, long after they end, as seen in the various blogs and comments in Colombotelegraph.com. The pot calling the kettle black phenomenon is the manifestation of the venom on both sides of the battle lines. There cannot be a closure or reconciliation given this reality.

    The only solution is to address issues that are of importance to a stable, peaceful and enlightened future. India can no doubt play an important role in this. If it takes sides in Geneva, whatever the justification or compulsions, it will no longer have the influence required in Sri Lanka. It should abstain, while expressing dissatisfaction with SriLanka on substantive issues such as devolution on which Mahinda Rajapakse made repeated promises.

    India should demand immediate engagement, on an urgent basis, to discuss these issues, before the Geneva meetings convene. The issues such as the Indo-Sri Lanka agreement , its full implementation or renegotiation; the 13th amendment, its implementation and further improvement; the right to sing the National Anthem in Tamil; and the right of the Tamils who sought political asylum in foreign countries ( who have no direct terrorist connections) to have dual citizenship rights, should be discussed and an agreement inked. The implementation of the Tissa Vitharane committee report as promised during and after the war should also come within the ambit of these discussions. India should thereafter insist on Sri Lanka implementing what it agrees ,honestly and sincerely. These discussions and the follow up should be done discreetly in a manner that does not trigger the ‘ Touch me not Sovereignty syndrome’, Sri Lanka usually finds convenient to manifest. Further, India should address the devolution and / or power sharing issues in such a manner as to take the communal sting out of it. A difficult task considering our political history. However, it will be the best approach to put an end to the structural entrenchment of communal politics.

    Dr. Rajasingham Narendran

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      Right, so let India mollycoddle this regime a little bit more for what ?
      How many delegations have come and gone, remember the delegation of Krishna in front of whom he promised 13 + then denied it a few days later ?
      Again all I see in your comments is your pay master speaking through you
      Was prabakaran not enough ? Do we need you to add to our misery ?

      • 0
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        So what do you propose to change the situation? Would a toothless resolution against Sri Lanka bring forth solutions? How long do you propose to wait till the Security Council decides on punitive action?

        I am sure VP who is yet alive and yet watching what is transpiring on TV, will give you directions, if you approach him. My ‘ Master’ has never paid me, since he has not cared tuppence for my advice. He is also unlike to pay me any time soon since I refuse to be his slave, or for that matter anybodies slave on this earth ( Naam yaarkum Kudiyalloam).

        Dr. Rajasingham Narendran.

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          RN
          What the hell are you preaching? Who made the last resolution toothless? It was India! Why did India do that? As you preach, India wanted to stay in the good books of Sri Lanka. How did Sri Lanka respond? GORA now says India must answer the question about the missing civilians in the Vanni war! MARA ruled out devolution at the indendence speech!! Now GORA says there should be a referendum to keep the 13A!!! India sacrificed over 2000 Indian soldiers, over 4000 Indian soldiers who were maimed and a great national leader – India sacrificed all this to defend “territorial integrity of Sri Lanka”!!! Sri Lanka will only understand sanction coupled with gunboat diplomacy. Please grow up. Even if you now beg don’t worry India will not ote against the resolution next month. India is, to my surprise, listening now.

        • 0
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          As I have stated many times before you and your master (MR) resort to calling any Tamil who disagrees with you a LTTEer
          What is sad is that you at the latter part of your life choose to sell the misery of the Tamil people

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            Real Peace and Deva,

            Please explain what would have happened if India had not diluted the resolution in Geneva last year? Would the UN Security Council have instituted sanctions and hauled MR, Gota ,SF and others before the international War Crimes Tribunal ? Would this ever happen? Sri Lankan governments have learned to do weather criticisms and condemnations and have made it a fine art. As I had stated in a previous comment the governments in Sri Lankan even neutralised the Indian military intervention and came out the winners. They have neutered the Indo-Lanka agreement and the 13th amendment. They garnered the support of the small and big counties, capitalising on the stupidity of the LTTE and decimated it. Did they get any signed agreements committing Sri Lanka to resolving the ‘ Tamil Prolem’ . The Rajapakse government dangled carrots such as 13 th amendment plus and the APRC before them and made them run. I had the guts to tell the SL government big wigs in March-April’ 2009 that this was hog wash.

            The GOSL’s , like the King of the Kotte Kingdom of old, who took the first Portuguese visitors to Colombo on a several days long walk to Kotte. will procrastinate and drag things until the Sinhala people wake up to the truth. It is beginning to happen now. This may be a straw now, but is worth clutching, as it is bound to become bigger and bigger soon. This would be more promising for us than trying to catch a rainbow or mirage that is the Human Rights Council in Geneva. India also can help us along, if it approaches issues soberly and persistently, using the onside rave leverage it has here, due its proximity and growing economy.

            You can insinuate imagined reasons for my stance to the extent you desire, but do not blind yourselves to realities. Naga, who apparently is very knowledgeable about affairs both past and present here has given sound advice. It is worth listening to.

            Dr. Rajasingham Narendran.

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              I can again see & hear your orgasm in praising your Guru: Mahinda-the-murderer…!!!

              I do not need to give you a long reply…

              Indo-Lanka is an international agreement between two sovereign nations. However, SL unilaterally keeps abrogating this agreement repeatedly. In retaliation, India has the right to deploy the troops in the NE to uphold this agreement. I think things are moving in that direction, if India does this, I have no doubt the IC would applaud. I have problem about the emotional outbursts in TN. Only TN can put Delhi on the right path.

              This year SL regime will face humiliation after humiliation….very interesting time ahead! I wonder how you can achieve your orgasm as Mahinda’s regime rapidly becomes a pariah state!!!!!!!

  • 0
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    All these evidences will be as usual ‘flatly’ denied by you-know-who.
    However the TRUTH shall prevail. Even if the destination is many many miles away, an inch by inch at a time will definitely REACH the destination one day. THAT IS THE POWER OF TRUTH. No one can deny or destroy IT.

    There was total black-out in the war zone. No outsiders whoesoever were allowed in order to achieve total erasure of any foot print. But now we see that these evidences are supplied by the very ‘involved’. Truth can never be hidden. THAT IS THE POWER OF THE TRUTH. BECAUSE GOD IS THE TRUTH.

  • 0
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    I FULLY AGREE. GOD IS TRUTH AND TRUTH WILL TRIUMPH!!!!!

    • 0
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      Who created GOD?

      • 0
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        Why, Man created God, no one else.

        • 0
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          What a joke – God is any invisible force behind us according to several religions. They do believe man is created by god, not the other way around.

          Even some natural scientists who are strongly attached to evolution theory believe to some extent that there should be unexplainable forces….

          Perhaps, all what they call – that is still to be discovered, can be named as -god.

          For me, it is better to believe in God (supernatural powers behind us) than not doing so. There are so many things that have no explaination on this world. What the humanbeings are already known is much much less than what they dont know.

          WHAT BLACK IS NOT BLACK….

  • 0
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    If and when an Independent International Inquiry is held, more and
    more evidence will surface. Now “white vans” prevent it. The witness
    protection legislation must be enacted before any Inquiry commences. Yes,
    TRUTH will prevail some day.

  • 0
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    Reading comments here we see some who regular commentators who now travel on the same trajectory, give us a good example of that hilarious “you scratch my back – and I’ll scratch yours” in what has now become their habit of white-washing the sins of the regime. Occasional cosmetic forays to shed tears for the Tamil people notwithstanding, that is. Col. Ramesh was no saint and has
    blood in his hands. But, if we are to take Sarath Fonseka at his words,
    “we conducted the War respecting Human Rights and avoiding War Crimes” then these tapes give much room to censure both GoSL and SLA. Fonseka plans an escape route when he says “Buggers like Gothabaya did the unprecedented thing in by-passing me and my high-command by giving bad and wrong instructions to my men in the battle-ground” The common denominator in all of this is the Rajapakses are neck-deep in trouble – both by omission and commission.

    Senguttuvan

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      Who is going to judge/punish the Rajapakses’

      • 0
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        None other than their step-brother, so-called “Dr” Mervyn Silva!!

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    What is disheartening is the current GoSL wasting the country’s foreign reserves to bribe some countries to vote in their favor. There are number of foreign MPs, Lords, Ministers and Senators ready accept money or any other favours from the corrupted Head of Sri Lanka.

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    What Jogan writes about is widely believed to be the new kind of our
    diplomacy. Problem is there are others (Lankans, of course) coming between the giver and taker burdening the Lankan tax-payer more. The story goes one minor official in our Mission in the US, entrusted to arrange transport, to our jumbo delegation to the UN when the Big Boss made his “address” – made so much as Commission it was enough for the party to partially finance a 3-roomed Apartment at Bambalapitiya.
    Enterprise, in the reverse, eh! what.

    And all this does not include the millions of dollars gobbled up by
    Bell Pottinger and the like. One wonders under what votes in Parliament the enormous sums expended are accounted for. We haven’t heard even a whimper from the Auditor-General’s department – so far.

    Senguttuvan

  • 0
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    Ramesh got back what he gave to others. There is no need to get shocked. His activities were aimed at women and children, a lot more helpless than Ramesh was. After all he was a soldier, a Colonel for that matter. Justice follows once deeds to suit the gravity of what he did. Its natural justice.

    • 0
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      Yes this Ramesh is a mass murderer. However I do not believe anything channel 4 says about sri lanka. With the advanced technology we have today anything is possible to be produced.

      What channel 4 and HRW fails to comprehend is that the LTTE leadership was a mass murdering, ethnic cleansing terrorist criminal outfit. All these Colombo 7 classy types here who are defending the LTTE terrorist gang and leadership if they were in the north during prabhakaran’s reign and if they were the wrong ethnic or religious group or even critics of prabhakaran they would have gotten their heads blown off in an instant.

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        kautilya

        How do you know Chanakya?

        Show us the proof as David Blacker would demand.

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    during premadasa regime in sri lanka, 600 unarmed policemen who were asked to surrender to MURDEROUS LTTE by the sri lankan president in the eastern province were brutally shot and killed by murderous prabhakaran,s fighters. at that time where was this UNHRC? WHERE WAS MRS.NAVANIGRAPILLAI

  • 0
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    The only solution to the Sinhalese ..

    This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy
    https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

  • 0
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    Some misguided but well meaning Sri Lankans have suggested that Sri Lanka investigate alleged ‘war crimes’ alleged by none other than the separatist terrorist diaspora tiger lobby and their partners in crime Channel4, HRW, Amnesty International and some politicians in western countries.

    However these allegations are all false based in hearsay and innuendo and no real evidence whatsoever. They are in effect made up stories to tarnish the image of Sri Lanka and to ensure that Sri Lanka is sanctioned at the current sessions of the UNHRC.

    As someone who has until recently lived a long time in the west I can say with confidence that these separatist terrorist diaspora tiger lobby spreads many lies against Sri Lanka on a regular basis now for well over thirty years.

    Their real agenda is definitely to partition Sri Lanka and finally create an Eelam that could not be achieved so far using the LTTEs violence, massacres, mass terrorism and bombings. The diaspora tiger lobby if they even remotely care about human rights should first and foremost apologise for the thousands of sinhala, tamil and muslim civilians who were massacred by the LTTE terrorist leadership and their tacit support of such. Then they should apologise for the civilians massacred by the LTTE using countless bomb blasts. Afterwards they should apologise for the ethnic cleansing of the north carried out by the tigers. Then they should apologise for all the prisoners of war massacred by the tigers. Then they should apologise for the child soldier recruitment. There are too many gross violations of human rights committed by the tigers to list here but they should apologise for all of them unreservedly since they tacitly supported such atrocities without question.

    It is very clear that human rights are the furthest from the minds of the diaspora separatist tiger lobby. Additionally what has this lobby done to make the lives of the people in the north better? Nothing. The people of the north are much better off without them trying to use them as pawns in their dubious schemes and plans. The diaspora tiger lobby are actually trying to destabilise Sri Lanka.

    Sri Lanka should not waste any of its precious time or precious resources investigating gross lies spread by this tiger lobby. Instead Sri Lanka must tell the UNHRC that

    (i) do not waste Sri Lanka’s time demanding Sri Lanka investigate made up stories

    (ii) Sri Lanka has a massive task ahead in terms of development and peace

    (iii) Sri Lanka is doing well and has achieved normalcy during the last four years and is forging ahead with peace and development restored

    (iv) point out that the so called accusers i.e. the tiger separatist lobby were not so long ago supporters of a terrorist criminal gang

    (iv) if any of these groups want to engage with Sri Lanka they should do so directly and bilaterally and that Sri Lanka does not under any circumstances entertain the idea of investigating unsubstantiated stories, video tapes etc. and that Sri Lanka has better things to do like running a country and taking care of over 20 million people.

    Sri Lanka should be very firm and forthright in this reply. Sri Lanka should point out that all these ‘accusers can discuss any issues they have directly and bilaterally with the Sri Lankan Government and that that is it.

  • 0
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    Where was the UNHRC when prabhakaran and his terrorist gang was busy terrorising and mass murdering? Where was HRW, Channel 4 and the whole lot?

    Sri Lanka does not have to listen to lectures by these separatist, terrorist apologists. Sri Lanka should tell them where to get off.

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      kautilya

      “Where was the UNHRC when prabhakaran and his terrorist gang was busy terrorising and mass murdering? Where was HRW, Channel 4 and the whole lot?”

      They were all planning the final pace of the war against LTTE.

      “Sri Lanka does not have to listen to lectures by these separatist, terrorist apologists. Sri Lanka should tell them where to get off.”

      Rather the International Community would enforce its terms of surrender on MR and his cronies depending on what MR is prepared to barter with them.

  • 0
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    This professor is lunatic,he is trying to white wash terrorist

  • 0
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    We are against the current rulers. But that does not necessarily mean we have to accept all doctored pictures that have been the case with Ltte propaganda machineries carrying out being on UK, Germany, France, Canda and any other countries.

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