2ND LEAD (Adds links)
State machinery brutalizes Tamils with impunity- TNA
[TamilNet, Saturday, 09 June 2007, 17:21 GMT]
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentarians condemned the eviction of Tamils from Colombo as "one more reprehensible act of discrimination against Tamils by the State of Sri Lanka," and called upon the International Community to "take cognizance of this grave situation facing the Tamil people," in a press release issued Friday from Colombo.
The full text of the press release follows:
Sunday Leader Editorial
"Sinhalese people who laugh these off as trivial pinpricks should imagine what life would be like were the tables turned. What if the official language of Sri Lanka were Tamil - together with the national anthem, car number plates etc.? What if Hinduism was constitutionally recognised as having "the foremost place" in our state? What if every time you were stopped by a policeman, he addressed you only in Tamil? How long would you tolerate that before you looked to extreme remedies?"
The expulsion of several hundred Tamil people at gunpoint from Colombo is one more reprehensible act of discrimination against Tamils by the State of Sri Lanka. Ordinary Tamils from the Northeast who were in Colombo, including many who had come for medical treatment, study, travel abroad, trade and to visit relatives, were forced onto busses and deported to the Northeast. The Sri Lankan Government Armed Forces gave the victims less than half an hour’s notice to gather their belongings and board the waiting buses. Even those with medical conditions that made them unfit for travel were not spared.
The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) condemns in the strongest possible terms this act of ethnic cleansing. We point out that this is the latest of a series of violent acts by the Sinhala-dominated State against ordinary Tamil people, which include the indiscriminate bombardment, starvation by embargo, disappearances and extra-judicial killings of Tamils.
Tamils in Government-controlled areas of the Northeast and the south are being brutalized with impunity by the State machinery. Large numbers of Tamils are fleeing their homes. Many have fled to neighboring Tamil Nadu and others further abroad.
The TNA calls upon the International Community to take cognizance of this grave situation facing the Tamil people. It is clear that the Sinhala dominated Sri Lankan State wishes to exclude the Tamil people from it. These actions of the Sri Lankan State have not only reinforced the need for the Tamil people to have a safe and secure homeland in the island, but also, reflecting on arrangements in other parts of the world, the need for a robust security arrangement to protect them from future abuse by the Sinhala State.
R. SAMPANTHAN M.P.
(TNA PARLIAMENTARY GROUP LEADER)
MAVAI SENATHIRAJAH M.P. (ITAK)
SURESH PREMACHANDRAN M.P. (EPRLF)
SELVAM ADAIKALANATHAN M.P. (TELO)
G. G. PONNAMBALAM M.P. (ACTC)