Link: Sri Lanka's Genocide [Moggy's Blog]
This is a previous post on Moggy's excellent blog. If, like me, you are a newcomer to the situation in Sri Lanka, this will give you a good introduction and it is a good place to start.
Within the last six weeks, I've watched Sri Lanka's 25-year ethnic conflict become a full-scale genocide against the Tamil population (the primary minority group in the country). Some of the more obvious indications include:
1. The government is in the process of putting approx. 300,000 Tamil civilians into military-run camps, which are, for all intents and purposes, Holocaust-style concentration camps: forced labor, lack of basic necessities and sanitation, indiscriminate killings and generally dire conditions.
2. A few weeks ago, the military began systematically raping the women being held in these camps.
3. In mid-January, the Sri Lankan military created a "safe zone" for Tamil civilians who were still in the war zone so that they would not be "caught in the crossfire". Once the civilians moved into the area, the military started bombing it, even hitting a hospital multiple times.
4. The government instituted a mandatory registration last month whereby all Sri Lankan citizens are legally required to provide the government with such details as their name, ethnicity and home address.
That last point sounds frighteningly similar to what the Rwandan government did just before the genocide in 1994.
Link: Repeating Rwanda: The Consequences of Euphemizing Genocide [Moggy's Blog]
This excellent article warns of the danger of euphemising what is going on in conflicts around the world. It does not help to call it "ongoing conflict" or "humanitarian crisis" no matter how much we want to bury our heads in the sand.
It is genocide, plain and simple and we need to identify who is doing what to whom so that the international community can exert pressure and action can be taken.
Link: Thousands call for international help to end 'genocide' in Sri Lanka [harrowtimes.co.uk]
Earlier this month a memorial service was held for Murugathasan Varnakulasingham, a 26-year-old from Harrow, London. Last month he burned himself to death in front of the UN headquarters in Geneva in protest of the Tamil deaths in Sri Lanka. Comments on this article have raised the question as to why the world is remaining silent about the conflicts when they have raised their voices about the Palestinian situation.
Link: Thousands of Tamils decry Sri Lankan 'genocide' [google.com/AFP]
Thousands of supporters of a Tamil state protested in Brussels, Belgium on Monday against the genocide in Sri Lanka. Presently, up to 50 to 100 Tamils are being killed a day in so-called protected areas.
Protestors also demonstrated outside of the UN's headquarters in Geneva and said that the world body was complicit in the genocides. This seems to be because UN calls for a cease fire in northern Sri Lanka were not heeded. Now up to 170,000 civilians are trapped in the crossfire between the Sri Lankan armed forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.