Members of the Human Rights Team of BTF are currently present in Geneva attending the 26th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. The Human Rights Team persistently work for justice for the suffering Tamils in our homeland in the North and East of the Island of Sri Lanka. Read More
British Tamils Forum joins the international community in condemning the violence that is currently being targeted at the Muslim community in Sri Lanka. A Sri Lankan state supported organisation, the Bodu Bala Sena, which has very close links with the Defence Secretary Mr Gotabaya Rajapakse, is directly involved in the violence. On 15 June, the General Secretary of this organisation delivered an openly racist speech citing Muslims as a threat to the Sri Lanka’s Sinhala identity. Consequently, Sinhala thugs have attacked Muslim owned shops and houses in southern towns and cities. Read More
Several thousand British Tamils attended a rally organised by British Tamils Forum at Trafalgar Square on Sunday 18 May 2014 to mark the fifth anniversary of the Mullivaikkal Massacre. The event commemorated the tens of thousands of Tamil people who were killed, and many more injured, at Mullivaikkal and drew together many of those who spent weeks in Parliament Square in 2009 warning the world of the impending catastrophe.
Following the horrific end to the armed conflict 5 years ago in May 2009, in which Tamil women became victims of sexual violence and rape as a weapon of war, they continue to be subjected to many forms of structural sexual violence perpetrated by the Sri Lankan military occupying the Tamil Homeland. The social stigma attached to the victims afflicted by sexual violence, is preventing them escaping from one of the most persistent and most neglected injustices in the world. They remain vulnerable and exposed to further violence and exploitation by predators.
While we remember this May the deaths of over 70,000 innocent Tamil civilians who were killed during the final 5 months of that armed conflict, and 146,679 people who still remain unaccounted for, we must not forget the over 90,000 Tamil war widows. The structural violence against these women is destroying individuals, families and the Tamil Nation in the Island of Sri Lanka.
To shine a spotlight on these issues, British Tamils Forum and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils will hold a conference at the UK Houses of Parliament on 13 May 2014, bringing together civil society experts, MPs from UK and Sri Lanka, witnesses, and victims to speak of the structural violence against Tamil women in the Island of Sri Lanka.
Five years on from May 2009, when Sri Lanka’s decades-long persecution of the Tamil people reached its violent climax on the shores of Mullivaikkal, British Tamils will commemorate the tens of thousands of Tamils who were killed and the many more who were injured, disappeared or raped.
The rally, which will be held in Trafalgar Square, London, will not only remember those who were killed and wounded in 2009, but also the thousands of Tamils who continue to be killed, tortured, abused and harassed every day in Sri Lanka, in what the Tamil people believe to be a continuing programme of structural genocide.
British Tamils will also press world leaders to honour their promise to obtain justice for the victims of Sri Lanka’s oppression of the Tamil people.
British Tamils Forum encourages both Tamils and the wider British community to join us in remembrance of the victims of this ongoing conflict on the island of Sri Lanka.
BTF has published its report on the International Conference on State Grabs of Tamil Land in the Island of Sri Lanka, which took place between 31 January and 2 February 2014 in London, organised jointly by BTF and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils.
Foreign and commonwealth office has raised concern over Sri Lanka on their recent human rights report published on 10th of April 2014. There are 27 other Countries of Concern also listed in their latest annual Human Rights Report. Full report can be accessed on the following link.
All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils responds to Sri Lanka’s move to proscribe diaspora organisationsadmin | April 2nd, 2014 | 70 Comments »
APPG for Tamils Statement on UNHRC resolution establishing an independent international inquiry on Sri Lankaadmin | March 31st, 2014 | 21 Comments »
The All Party Parliamentary Group for Tamils (APPG for Tamils), welcomes the decision by the United Nations Human Rights Council to adopt the resolution on 27th March 2014, which establishes an independent international inquiry into abuses that have taken place in Sri Lanka. The adoption of this resolution is the culmination of five years of hard work by many people around the world; the APPG for Tamils would like to express its sincere gratitude for their dedication and unwavering commitment to seek justice for the victims and survivors of this conflict.
Now the inquiry has been announced, the APPG for Tamils would like to seek clarification on how it is to be implemented. In particular, the APPG for Tamils asks the Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) to explain how it plans to conduct the inquiry if Sri Lanka does not cooperate.
The APPG for Tamils also encourages the UK Government to consider how it can encourage the Sri Lankan state and officials, particularly those implicated in the crimes being investigated, to cooperate with the inquiry. The UK Government should use the full range of tools at its disposal to persuade Sri Lanka to comply.
Finally, the APPG for Tamils reminds both the UNHRC and the UK government that the abuses did not end in 2009 – disappearances, arbitrary detention, rape, land grabs and militarisation continue to this day. Therefore, it is crucial that the international community takes immediate action to stop these ongoing crimes, even as the inquiry into past crimes gets underway.