2ND LEAD (Adds NY, OH pictures)

Boycott Sri Lanka campaign expands to multiple US cities

[TamilNet, Sunday, 13 September 2009, 05:22 GMT]
North American Tamils expanded their boycott campaign over Sri Lanka goods to over a dozen cities across the US and Canada, targeting GAP and Victoria's Secret stores on Saturday, youth organizers of the event said. Leveraging the "No to Sri Lanka" website run by Canadian youth activists to spread the campaign message, the organizers held protests in San Francisco, Chicago, North Carolina, Boston, Atlanta, New York city and in several Canadian cities. The protesters stood inside malls, outside shopping centers, and some in the median of busy streets, urging ethical shoppers to resist buying garments made in Sri Lanka.

Protest in Raleigh, NC
Protest in Raleigh, NC
New York city protest - GAP
New Jersey protest - GAP
Protest in Raleigh, NC
Protest in Raleigh, NC
New York city protest - Victoria's Secret
New Jersey protest - Victoria's Secret
Atlanta protest
Atlanta protest
"We wanted to convey a unified message that by conducting business with Sri Lanka's apparel manufacturing industry, GAP and Victoria Secret are indirectly funding a brutal regime that is accused of possible war crimes, and which is holding nearly 300,000 Tamils in military supervised camps with little or no freedom of movement," spokesperson for co-ordinating the protests said.

Dozens of protesters, including women and children held placards and distributed leaflets in several places in the campaign cities, and drew the attention of large crowds of people,

The busy intersection at Market St. and Powell St. outside the GAP store was targeted by protesters in San Francisco. Protesters met with the store management and explained why protesters object to GAP's business with Sri Lanka.

Another group of protesters met outside Victoria's Secret store on Powell St. in San Francisco while similar protests were held in major cities across north America.

Volunteers distributed more than 3000 campaign fliers while walking from Macy's to Victoria Street and to GAP around 4 blocks also on Michigan Street in Chicago.

Nearly 20 protesters were present at the Atlantic Station shopping district near the Victoria Secret and GAP Stores in Atlanta, and held placard from 3-5 PM at the busy intersection and the entrance to the shopping district.

Volunteers left fliers in the windshields of the vehicles parked in the public parking garage and distributed fliers to interested shoppers.

Many US state statutes prohibit using Mall premises for protests. "With the successes so far, and additional knowledge gained in understanding procedural matters related to picketing, we hope to further expand the protests to other cities, and to continue campaign in a sustained basis, until an acceptable solution is found for the 300,000 internees," organizers said.

GAP has its headquarters in San Francisco and sells apparels under the brands GAP, Banana Republic and Old Navy among others.




Columbus, OH protest
Columbus, OH protest
Columbus, OH protest
Columbus, OH protest


Picketing in San Francisco
Picketing in San Francisco


Chronology:


External Links:
USTPAC: United States Tamil Political Action Council
NoToSriLanka: Consumers making the right choice on genocide

 

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