2ND LEAD (Adds video, photos)

Emboldened by EU delisting, genocidal Sri Lanka bans Tamil fishermen from entering their lagoon

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 26 April 2016, 11:13 GMT]
Christy Lal Fernando, the director general of Colombo's Fisheries Department, who was on a sudden trip on Monday to Mukaththuvaaram, situated at the mouth of Kokku'laay lagoon in Karaithu’raip-pattu division of Mullaiththeevu district, instructed the local authorities to block the native 300 Tamil fishermen from engaging in fishing in the lagoon. He was citing Colombo's declaration of sanctuary. In the meantime 1,352 Sinhala colonisers brought from South by the occupying SL military are engaged in large-scale illegal fishing in the same lagoon. The latest move by Colombo to block Tamil fishermen has triggered wide-scale protests on Tuesday. Mr Fernando was using complaints from Muslim fishermen from Pulmoaddai as excuse to announce the ‘ban’, Tamil civil sources in Mullaiththeevu said.

The EU Ambassador in Colombo David Daly, who recently praised Mr Christy Lal Fernando, should visit Mukaththuvaaram and see for himself and report back to EU how a demographic genocide is being carried out by the SL fisheries ministry in Colombo, the occupying Sinhala military, Buddhist monks and the intruding fishermen from South, protesting Tamil fishermen from Mukaththuvaaram told TamilNet on Tuesday.

The EU recently withdrew the ban it had issued on Sri Lanka based on “Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) regulations”.

“[...] after a lengthy dialogue process Sri Lanka has now successfully reformed its fisheries governance system. The country was issued with a yellow card in 2012 and been listed by the Council in February 2015. By today it has amended its legal framework, strengthened sanctions and improved its fleet control. Sri Lanka joins the growing list of countries (Ghana, Papua New Guinea, Korea, the Philippines, Fiji, Belize, Panama, Togo and Vanuatu) that have reformed their systems, following a warning by the EU,” a news release by the EU stated on 21 April.

Tamil fishermen who started to resettle in their native village 4 years ago, mostly use Veechchu-valai, a net thrown into shallow waters from the shore, to catch shrimps while the occupying Sinhalese fishermen deploy illegal means to catch shrimps in large numbers using boats and heavy nets.

Tamil fishermen in Kokku'laay protest

Tamil fishermen in Kokku'laay protest
Tamil fishermen in Kokku'laay protest
Tamil journalists who took video of the huts and boats of the Sinhala colonisers on Sunday said there were 252 Sinhala families consisting of 652 illegal settlers at Mukaththuvaaram East. There are 352 families consisting of 700 Sinhalese settlers at Mukaththuvaaram North, they said. The video clips also show SL military vehicles along the huts.

On Tuesday, the Tamil fishermen launched a protest in front of the District Secretariat demanding justice.

In the meantime, SL Minister Mahinda ‘Buddhadasa’ Samarasinghe, who co-chairs the Permanent Standing Committee on Human Rights along with SL Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera, said on Monday that the removal of the ban that has been imposed so far by the European Union for ‘Sri Lankan’ fish exports was a ‘huge victory’ of the current regime, Daily News reported in Colombo.

The SL Minister was claiming this after describing the federal demand of Tamils as “unconstitutional” and as something that would strengthen “extremism”.

“Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) is very clear in its policy to oppose a federal solution. Such a solution would be unconstitutional and would lead to disturbances by strengthening extremism”, the PTI reported on Monday.

“During the last regime, the country was in a foreign policy, which had relationships only with a few selected friends. But this has changed today and a new foreign policy is in place for the betterment of the country,” the Daily News quoted the SL minister as saying.

The EUs ban on LTTE in May 2006 laid the ‘diplomatic’ foundation for the physical genocide to be carried out by Colombo's military on Eezham Tamils.

Now, the actions of EU, amidst open documentation of the disparity being systematically engineered along the coast of North and East, will only be contributing to strengthen Colombo's structural genocide against the nation of Eezham Tamils through militarisation, Sinhalicisation, demographic engineering of the entire coastal stretch in the Tamil homeland, the Mahaweli scheme and colonisation, the representatives of Tamil fishermen in Mullaiththeevu told TamilNet on Tuesday.

Tamil fishermen in Kokku'laay protest

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