29 October, 2020

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Tribunal Delivers Sri Lanka’s Guilty Verdict

By Bruce Haigh

Bruce Haigh

Bruce Haigh

A tribunal of 11 eminent judges has unanimously found the Sri Lankan government guilty of the crime of genocide against ethnic Tamil people. Sitting in Bremen, from December 7 to 10, the Second Session of the Peoples’ Tribunal on Sri Lanka found that the crime of genocide has been and is being committed against the Eelam Tamils as a national group.

I was invited to appear before the tribunal as an expert witness on the treatment of Tamils from Sri Lanka by the Australian government. The Second Session in Bremen was convened in response to the determination of the First Session, held in January 2010 in Dublin, that war crimes and crimes against humanity had taken place against the Tamil population in the final months of the war in early 2009, and that further investigation be undertaken regarding the question of genocide.

The two sessions of the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal were established in response to submissions made by the International Human Rights Association, Bremen, and the Irish Forum for Peace in Sri Lanka. The Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal is based in Rome under the auspices of general secretary Gianni Tognoni. Thirty eye-witnesses and other experts appeared before the Second Tribunal, some at great personal risk.

The tribunal found that genocide against the Eelam Tamil group has not yet reached the total destruction of their identity; however, the genocide is a process and the process is ongoing. The military killings of May 2009 have been transformed into other forms of conduct causing serious bodily and mental harm to members of the group. The tribunal considered that the proof established beyond any reasonable doubt that the following acts were committed by the government of Sri Lanka:

Killing members of the group, which includes massacres, indiscriminate shelling, the strategy of herding civilians into so-called ”no fire zones” for the purpose of killings, targeted assassinations of outspoken Eelam Tamil civil leaders who were capable of articulating the Sri Lankan genocide project to the outside world.

Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group, including acts of torture, inhumane or degrading treatment, sexual violence including rape, interrogations combined with beatings, threats of death, and harm that damages health or causes disfigurement or injury.

Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or part, including expulsion of the victims from their homes; and seizures of private lands; declaring vast areas as military high security zones to facilitate the military acquisition of Tamil land.

The tribunal undertook to further examine allegations of forced sterilisation of Tamil women.

Britain and the US were found to be guilty of complicity in the crime of genocide, including complicity by procuring means, such as weapons, instruments or any other means, used to commit genocide, with the accomplice knowing that such means would be used for such a purpose; and complicity by knowingly aiding or abetting a perpetrator of a genocide in the planning or enabling of such acts.

The tribunal recognised that Sri Lanka did not have the capacity to achieve genocide without assistance and, on the basis of evidence provided, came to the conclusion that Britain, the US and possibly India are guilty of complicity. However, due to the constraint of time, the tribunal limited its findings to Britain and the US, pending the availability of further evidence against India and other states.

After the recent gift of two patrol boats to Sri Lanka’s navy, Australia is in danger of being one of those states. The gift adds to the military capacity of the Rajapaksa regime to illegally detain and harm Tamil asylum seekers fleeing repression.

In recent times the Rudd and Abbott governments took it upon themselves to send Tamil asylum seekers back to Sri Lanka without hearing their claims. This was done on the basis that they were economic refugees – although how this determination was reached without first hearing claims was not explained.

Australians outside of government involved with the welfare of Tamil asylum seekers have long known of the genocidal intent of the government. But it has been puzzling why the Australian government was not informed of this by its high commission in Colombo.

I took the opportunity at the hearings to ask some of the Tamil witnesses from within the country whether they thought the high commission was informed and they said yes, on the basis that they had briefed Australian diplomatic officers. This raises the question of what was done with that information. The assumption must be that it had gone to Canberra and had been ignored by government for reasons of policy and politics. This would suggest that both major parties knowingly acted illegally with respect to processing Tamil asylum seekers. How low can we go?

Lower, it seems. I was also informed that the high commission has now ceased briefings from Tamil sources in the north, presumably on the basis of what they don’t know they don’t have to lie about. A form of deniability adopted and refined by Hitler’s Third Reich towards the final solution of the Jewish question.

The tribunal requested that states able to do so should take Tamil asylum seekers as refugees.

*Bruce Haigh is a political commentator, human rights activist and retired diplomat. A Version of this article appeared in Canberra Times on January 02, 2014 

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Latest comments

  • 16
    13

    Now all that is needed is to endorse this verdict by the UNHRC and the UN to bring the perpetrators to justice.

    • 13
      13

      Oh my, sounds like the mythical Eelam is just around the corner, just like it was when this kangaroo court and Brucey found Sri Lanka guilty of this and that the last time they gathered for a similar feast of punnakku. LMAO :D

      • 2
        10

        LOL go out of your well and see what the world thinks of your nation LOL

      • 12
        5

        @Siva Sankaran Sarma

        Hey Blacker David, you keep popping up like a bad penny from time to time using your new found pen name. Eelam may not be on the cards, but maximum devolution of power is what your boss Goatapaiya will have to settle for if he does not want to be tried for war crimes along with his brother MR. Keep March free and watch what happens in Geneva. :)

        • 10
          5

          Sorry to say pal but this Tribunal is the joke of the new year. I am dead against the Rajapaksha and clans who suck the life blood out of the country.

          But this type of self-appointed tribunals only make the Tamils a joke in the eyes of the rest of the world.

          If such tribunals have any impact on the aristocracies of Jews on poor Palestinians the Middle East problem could have been long solved…

      • 3
        1

        Siva Sankaran Sarma,

        Sometimes looniness is a quality loonies like you can be proud of!

      • 1
        3

        Aussie are giving boats to this goats

    • 1
      5

      If any international community or all collectively would pay genuine efforts on lanken humanitarian issue, they have enough prima facie evidences to bring the man (no body else killing minded Mahinda Rajapakshe) before the courts. The problems lie mainly on International communities not to have made whole heartedness in this regard yet. Moreover, there may be many facts related to war end untold stories that have been not yet open neither to local community nor to IC yet.

      However, predominant fractions within the island nation, make up villagers across the island are in a common view that Rajapskse came to power and single handedly did everything winning the war against tamil rebells. They dont care about the great assistance offered by India, the US or any other countries, nor have village folks asked yet whose guidance was highly instrumental in anhiliating the rebells mingled with rebells, that were then trapped in the de facto LTTE territories. Why the man and his rule failed to grant amnesty to those who believed to have surrendered to the forces stay unanswered by the folks. FOr them, only thing that they would still praise has been getting the LTTErs crushed and set the country free from terror but by any price.
      It is the common nature of those hallozinated masses – not to see issues with wider eyes; latter attitudes have dug their own grave today, while allowing rulers to exercise any crimes or injustices on them. Can anybody of the commentators to this forum add any fair verdict made by the crime investigations held in the country today. Regardless of the race and religions, they the ruler have been barbaric to any communities today. Some believe, the situation can easily be comparable to what they experienced in late 80ties in the country by which JVPers and state men went on killing any youth for no proper reaons. I know how they killed my then mates at the Uni. Many of them were not political activists. Those astrocities were recorded by AI or other human rights organisation and thought the country would never be run by a leader like Premadasa again. But MR ´s has been even all bearing to this day. Those who attack RW (most gentle by nature, not abusive, not corrupted for billions of peoples money, never abusive mouthed even if he is constantly been attacked) should rethink whether they are right in that context, it is high time all to think properly, who would be the next leader to lost nation. I think at least edcuated masses should rally round to bring RW as the next leader. That is the only alternative we have now.

    • 9
      8

      hahaha..Thiru…
      How many eminent NAZIS in this gang ?

      Idiot! They represent gun dealers and they lost revenue when LTTE was wiped out!

      Navi Pillai read the statement of LTTE word to word and became a useless bitch now.

      Destruction of terrorists is not genocide in any country!

      UNHRC and Human Rights become forums for jokers and criminals!

  • 6
    10

    Hope they are also sitting and looking at the evidence of life lost due to activities involving ‘freedom fighter-terrorist’ elements.It is important to point the finger at ALL THE PEOPLE WHO CONTRIBUTED TOWARDS THE WAR.There is more than an ethnic issue here,it involves internal caste issues etc.No one should sit on judgement without the real facts.

    • 13
      3

      “No one should sit on judgement without the real facts. ” – This is why we are asking for international independent investigation.

      • 12
        8

        When ‘they’ hear international independent investigation they start peeing in their pants. Why is that?

      • 9
        6

        LTTE terrorism is a “local” one and Sri Lanka found a solution. International investigations are needed to inquire American invasion in Iraq, not in Sri lanka.

        I hope you LTTE morons will ask an international investigation over the killing of sandalwood smuggler Veerappan also!

        When are you EELAM guys ask to investigate USA and call Bush a criminal?

    • 4
      2

      I agree. All those who contributed to the Sri Lankan government’s war by providing military, intelligence and political support must be investigated. They include India, China, Israel, USA, UK, The EU, Pakistan and Iran.

  • 7
    8

    Are we living in a barbarous world where small nations striving for freedom from oppression are exterminated in the name of terrorism?

    • 6
      4

      haha..Thiru
      In which small nation you live? Maldives?

    • 7
      1

      Of coures not!

      Barborous terrorists like your hero Pirapakaran was allowed to massacre at least 30000 civilian including about 5000 Tamils. The world led by Norway and the USprovided succour to tat blood-thirsty monster.

      Exterminating that bastard, in the name of anything, was the best thing that ever happened in the human history.

      You can cry. See who cares.

  • 10
    7

    Commentators like Bruce Haigh do not engage in any in-depth study of people who come to Australia claiming refugee status. If he had cared to study the background of those Tamils who now come to Australia and claim refugee status he would not have written this highly inaccurate article comparing Rudd and Abbott Governments to Hitler’s Third Reich.

    The undeniable fact is that those Tamils who now come to Australia claiming asylum are economic refugees helped by Sinhalese people smugglers. Many of these Sinhalese people smugglers are believed to be politically influential. Besides Tamils there are Muslims and Sinhalese as well who get into the boats and enter Australia to claim refugee status.

    The present Abbott government has taken the right decision to turn them all and send them back to Sri Lanka. Bruce Haigh is yet another misguided Australian who has swallowed the bait of the pro-LTTE Tamil Diaspora in Australia bent on discrediting the Rajapakse government. I have personally made inquiries during my recent visits to Sri Lanka on these illegal immigrants and heard first hand evidence on these people smugglig activities involving Sri Lankans. From my inquiries I am convinced that not even one per cent of those Tamils who entered Australian shores illegally in the recent past are genuine refugees. Most of them are unemployed youths and thanks to some stupid Australian NGOs who provide these guys with funds and other material assistance they send periodic remittances back home in Sri Lanka. Seeing these flow of remittances from those who managed to enter Australia other familis in places like Batticalloa send their young ones on these illegal boat journeys to Australia. Many of those who were returned or caught by the Sri Lankan authorities try again and enter Australia.

    Bruge Haigh should not forget that the Australian government is facing a massive budget deficit due to the expenses it incurs in dealing with these illegal boat people. Last year alone Australian government had to spend Aus$ 1.3 billion on account of these illegal boat people, and the government has to cut other important budgetary allocations. Australian tax payers are furious about these boat people and one of the reasons for the defeat of Rudd government was the dismantling by former Prime Minister Rudd of the tough immigration policies of the previous Howard goverment. Australian Taxpayers like this writer has to foot the bill of these bogus asylum seekers from Sri Lanka.

  • 6
    3

    Whosoever has been at its helm, the tax-payer maintained state apparatus of Sri Lanka, has been and, still is being used, as a tool not only to extra-judicially kill her own citizens -Sinhalese,Tamils & Muslims – without due process, but also to commit crimes against humanity/genocide/war crimes, ever since she gained political independence from the British colonial rulers in 1948. In a sense, by Ceylon political independence back then, Britannia had cast pearls before swine.

  • 9
    4

    So the “Tribunal of 11 Eminent Judges” “UNANIMOUSLY” decided “GUILTY” even without calling a “DEFENSE”.

    PLEASE DO NOT DISGRACE AND RUIN THE INDEPENDENCE AND THE HOLY SPIRIT OF THE JUSTICE SYSTEM.

    • 6
      3

      Like the justice system you have in Sri Lanka you mean? Did the Sri Lankan justice system deliver justice to the Trincomalee 5 or the Mutur 17ACF massacres by the SL military? Remember how the attorney general?s department sabotaged the inquiry? Justice will be served at the UNHRC and at the ICC my friend. Just watch and wait. The regime is guilty as he’ll!!

      • 5
        4

        Prepare for another “kothurotti” business or knock the doors of the Tamils and ask money to run train to Geneva!

        You and many other LTTE guys find a source to pay mortgages!

    • 7
      4

      LTTE kangaroo courts also delivered “unanimous” verdict to kill many Tamils.

      This another kangaroo court comprised of NAZIS!

  • 2
    4

    Naga should define who “genuine refugees” are.
    Most ‘would be’ refugees – who would like to leave sri lanka to some other country – not necessarily australia – to escape persecution,are in secret detention.
    Many escaped to india.
    A few die in custody,after illegal arrests.
    Many ‘vanished’ after being transported away in buses by the army,on the last day of the war,in full sight of witnesses – the wife of one of them is now a NPC member.
    Many more are being persecuted on the trumped up excuse that they are ex-LTTErs and/or ‘supporters’ of so-called ‘rump-LTTE’ – all these would like to escape to any other country,merely to survive.

  • 6
    2

    Quote: A tribunal of 11 eminent judges has unanimously found the Sri Lankan government guilty of the crime of genocide against ethnic Tamil people.”……….. They have been unable to differentiate between an enthnic Tamin & a terrorists. PROBABLY WILL HAVE TO SIT IN JUDGEMENT AGAIN.

    Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal have consumed the holy spirit of Justice to enable the NGOs to wipe their crocodile tears with one hand and dip the other into their Goverment kitty.

    • 7
      3

      These 11 donkeys cannot deliver any judgement against USA and Bush over the invasion of Iraq because they are also whites and Nazis!

      • 0
        1

        you seem very agitated dear, calm down !!

  • 11
    5

    Well this kind of tribunals any where in the world against Sri Lanka, should be done only after such tribunals are held for war crimes committed in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Vietnam and so on. Ours is not an invasion, this was an internal conflict against a terrorist outfit.
    Proscribed as terrorist organization by many countries including Australia.
    Surely some ordinary civilians did die this is the unfortunate reality in any war, termed fashionably as “Collateral” damage when it suits the western powers.

    Rather the efforts towards Sri Lanka should be concentrated to bring about good governance, equality and prosperity to all in this nation.

    These mellow dramas are played out and funded by around million(+) Tamul diaspora who would would want to hang on the there new found nationalities and pending asylum request at the expense of the tamils who are living in Sri Lanka.
    Now that they don’t have to pay LTTE any more a collection of 1/10 of what they paid to LTTE will suffice to run this kind of drams all over the world. So they will continue to run such puppet shows as an when they see it required.
    Greedy politics who are eager to get these votes will merrily support these actions.

    One MP Rathika Sitsabaiesan from Canada waited nearly 5 years to visit her home town ! why now ? what was the purpose visiting when the smoke has died down ? Nothing short of personal gain!
    “Strips of a Tiger does not change just so that it has been moved to a different Zoo”

    • 7
      1

      Well this kind of tribunals any where in the world against Sri Lanka, should be done only after such tribunals are held for war crimes committed in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Vietnam and so on.

      Actually, my expectations are even simpler.

      Just ask these “respectable judges” to first investigate and hold accountable those who funded LTTE terrorism for 30 years now living in these Western countries (Canada, UK, France, Switzerland, USA, …) first.

  • 3
    3

    .
    Looks like Gota has to do an other trip to Dublin ( hopefully this time he’ll take more valuable gifts ).
    >
    :-)

  • 6
    3

    what did the so called tribunal do when the barbarian prabhakan killed many – sri lankan

  • 1
    2

    No worries. The psychopath, goon, defiance secretary Gota will take care of all the ‘things’ his way after keeping MR under house arrest sooner or later:-) This UN, Ban-Ki- Buffoon, UNHCR stuff are all big humbug.
    Their sanctions will not affect the robbers who had already looted millions or billions of peoples money and from borrowed loans given by World Bank, ADB, China, and from other donations like Tsunami funds, Japanese aids etc., Only the poor masses and the middle class will suffer. Thuggery, intimidation, killings, drugs, casinos, prostitution, sex tourism, nepotism, racism,bad governance are on the rise. Our country’s troubles are not going to be solved that soon. A miracle is needed very badly !

  • 3
    0

    Elam tamil !!!!! what the f…. is that, there is no such thing in this world. So these jokers gave a verdict that is non exist in this universe!!!! This is the best example for a modern day kangaroo court.

  • 4
    0

    This man Bruce Haigh is complaining of allegations of unauthorised violence supposedly carried out by the Sri Lankan government, yet he has openly stated on several occasions that terrorism is legitimate if it brings about the desired result. For him, that applies to terrorist groups like the IRA, al-Qaeda and the Tamil Tigers, but not, it seems, to countries trying to defend themselves from terrorism.

    An “expert witness”, the by line reads. Bruce Haigh is an Australian political head-banger of the first order or, as Lenny Henry once sang:

    “He’s mad, mad, one brick short of a load
    He’s mad, mad, one sandwich short of a picnic.”

  • 5
    0

    Seems like the 60% of tamils that live outside the northern province was overlooked in the genocide. If genocide was committed Wellawata would have been the largest cemetary in the world.

  • 5
    1

    Kangaroo court!!

  • 3
    0

    The footnote to Bruce Haig’s article tells us he is a “retired diplomat”. It seems to me he is more like a “tired” diplomat if he sees fit to describe the members of the so-called Tribunal as “11 eminent judges”. ‘Eminent’ persons they may be (eminent in what field and is anyone one of them a world figure?) but they are certainly not judges (unless you use the word ‘judges’ also carelessly) eminent or not.

    The Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal (PPT) seems like another of those shadowy and meddlesome groups who simply are a nuisance.

    The PPT has no real authority or evident skills. If it has seen fit to find the SL government guilty of genocide against the Tamils, seemingly without considering a case from the ‘defence’ it has been simply reckless and foolish and shown itself to be incompetent in the extreme.

  • 0
    0

    CT is good for Jokers, now.

    • 0
      1

      Are you including yourself in this group of “jokers”, obviously you must be, otherwise why would you be here right? LOL

  • 2
    0

    Looks like some people try to fool the innocent Tamils by arousing their sentiments and then get rich.

  • 0
    0

    Now the second largest community is Muslims in srilanka and do the Tamils living out side the srilanka are happy to see your brothers and sisters living peasefully or not?

  • 2
    0

    Over one thousand died in Sarin attacks. 3 Million Syrians are refugees,, Eight to ten year old girls and boys are working on Beirut streets.

    This is just in two years after Mr Cameron launched his Humanitarian Operation to liberate Syrians and restore their Human Rights.

    Libyans are totally under War Lords and living like refugees, Suicide attacks are rampant.. That is after Cameron and his Franco Mate launched Air Strikes in order to make passage for the hired Guns even from Al Queda to restore Human Rights to the Libyans.

    No body surely didn’t alert these eminent lawyers about the poor Libyans and Syrians and even the Iraqis.

    Human Right Protector Aussie Bruce must have been busy preparing the brief to highlight the 30 years of Human Rights violations of the poor Srilankan inhabitants of all ethnic groups by the Rajapaksa Regime.

    l

  • 2
    0

    Who are these eminent jokers! and how much were they paid?

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