Joint Declaration – Australia keeps mum on Human Rights in Sri Lanka : TGTE

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA, July 1, 2017 / —

The Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE), representing the political voice of the Tamil Diaspora worldwide, is disappointed that the joint declaration on enhanced cooperation between Australia and Sri Lanka, failed to address the plight of the Tamils with respect to their political and human rights issues in the country.

Australia is one of the co-sponsors of the UN HRC resolution 30/L1 on Sri Lanka, but the declaration failed to address the key core current issues in Sri Lanka, and for its full implementation, including for an independent international investigation with international judges, prosecutors and lawyers.

Sri Lankan government is deliberately delaying without any justification, especially the repealing of the PTA, release of prisoners of war, addressing the missing persons issues, release of land and houses to the legitimate owners, demilitarisation, not stopping but aiding and abetting all colonization / sinhalanization process to change the demography of the Tamil Homeland, and to further delay justice, accountability and reparations to the victims. The Mullivaikkal war in May 2009, by the Sri Lankan armed forces on the Tamil Homeland, had resulted in more than 100 000 civilians killed, 89 000 widows, 60 000 orphans and disabled, 146 000 still unaccounted for, 50 000 families are still refused entry into their own homes and lands, which is occupied by the army, now eight years after the end of the war.

There are thousands of refugees scattered around the world, including many in Australia and in Nauru. Unless the military is removed from the Tamil areas, the safety and security of refugees returning are not assured. Structural Genocide is taking place under the jackboot of the army.

Numerous reports by the UN and High Commissioner, by UN Special Rapporteurs, International NGOs, and Channel 4 documentary have highlighted that Sri Lanka is not serious on its obligation to the UN or to the UN Charter for international norms and standards.

It is very disappointing for overseas Tamils, that Australia as a co-sponsor, fails its responsibility and commitment to the UN HRC resolution, and with the crisis of large Sri Lankan refugees on hand, failing to help resolve but prolong the pain and sufferings of the Tamil people by not addressing the political and human rights issues, but continues to appease and promote rogue states like Sri Lanka to further suppress and subjugate numerical minorities.

Is Australia’s priority trading for enduring relationship, security and defence cooperation, economic and development cooperation with rogue states, against political rights, human rights, and for justice and accountability for the victims?

K. Manickavasagar
Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE)