|Shut down the prison camps: Build the fightback against oppressionCome to the meeting Time : Saturday 17 October : 5pmPlace : Room 210, Laws building, Queen Mary’s University, Mile end Road
Nearest tube : Mile end
Enter Campus through East gate onto Westfield way. Please call us if you can’t find us
| There is no justification whatsoever for the horrific treatment of the internally displaced people (IDP) in Sri Lanka by the government of Mahinda Rajapakse. It has been months since the official declaration of the end of the war on 18 May, which only came after over 20,000 people were massacred in the last weeks alone. The government has shown no intention of allowing the Tamil people to return to their homes, both during and after the war. Their war on the Tamil people’s basic rights still continues, with around 300,000 men, women and children incarcerated under the most horrific conditions and starved. Conditions in the so-called ‘welfare camps’ were described as a ‘vision of hell’ by the BBC in May. Since then the situation has deteriorated. More than 15,000 people are reported to be missing from the camps. At least 40 people die every day. There is no reason to keep these innocent people in the camp, the majority of whom are children, women and elderly people. Over 35% of the imprisoned children under the age of five are said to be suffering from malnutrition. Surely, even this brutal government cannot claim there is a security threat to the country from these young children. International and local humanitarian agencies have said that they want to help and have asked for access to the camps. The government is still refusing entry to any independent organisations, reporters or individuals. There is no other reason for the existence of these notorious camps other than the government’s intention to make these people suffer more. Meanwhile, government officials and military commanders make millions from the suffering. Recently a leading military commander was accused of profiteering from the sale of shell brass scrap. The Sri Lankan Times reported that a parliamentary group is making millions from smuggling out the IDPs, at a reported cost of 600,000 to 900,000 Sri Lankan rupees per person released. The Guardian recently criticised the bullying attitude of the Sri Lankan government regarding aid, most of which is going into the pockets of corrupt officials. In fact, corruption is said to be at an all time high. The president and all the government officials continue to lie about the suffering and horror faced by Tamil people before, during and after the war. This is despite leaked video evidence of war crimes and the conditions in the camps. If they have nothing to hide why keep the camp and the warzone under military control. The military is also taking control of some civil operations in the name of ‘hunting underworld criminals’. Anyone raising dissent in the country is either attacked, imprisoned or killed. More than 12 journalists have been killed in Sri Lanka since 2006. Many more have been attacked and imprisoned. Many have fled the country in fear of their lives. A report by the Committee to Protect Journalists ranks Sri Lanka number one with regards to violence against the media, well above Iraq. JS Tissanayagam, a Tamil journalist, was recently sentenced to 20 years hard labour for a couple of the articles he wrote which contained mild criticism of the government’s war policies. Unicef chief officer James Elder was expelled from the country after he openly talked about the appalling conditions in the camps. Even the British television station Channel 4 has been threatened with legal action by the Sri Lankan government. Many activists are forced into silence just to carry out their daily duties. We cannot allow this to continue. Continued persecutions and attacks on decent cannot hold back the fightback.We must join forces with those who fighting against Rajabackse regime.
British Government while advocating similar murderous war in Iraq and Afghanistan had given their full support to Rajabakse war. They just asked the Sri Lankan government to respect the international standard! They have done nothing to put pressure on government to stop the war or to close down the camps. IMF loan is passé to sri lanka and they continue to maintain their economic ties. Only worry for them is the economic advantage they may loose if Sri Lankan establishes ties with Iran and China.
If it is not for the brave action of Tamil youth and activist protesting on the streets around the world this massacre could have gone unnoticed. We must not stop fighting. Despite the government boasting about victory and saving the people they suffered a defeat in vavuniya in the last election. It was a clear signal from the people about what they thing of the government. Despite the horrific conditions and constant fear people there were reports of riots in the camps. It is important more than ever that we continue the fight against the Brutal regime in Sri Lanka and the British capitalist parities who will never stand up for the poor here or anywhere in the world.
With the great lessons learnt during the brave demonstrations and activities it is time now we thing about the right way to fight back. We should not rely on the rotten international organisations such as UN who will just be a stooge to the oppressing governments. Despite overwhelming evidence and the condemnation of all most all the humanitarian agencies UN refuse to take any action. In fact they passed a resolution clearing Sri Lanka from any human rights violations. Sri Lanka don’t have to listen to UN words of threats or accusations of human rights violations as its knows very well that there will not be any actions taken by their allies in the UN council. UN will never represent the interest of the poor and the oppressed Tamil people. Western countries including Britain had done nothing meaningful. Important lesson must be learnt from this. Fight for our right is a fight against the capitalist class in Sri Lanka and around the world. We in Tamil solidarity is organising the fight against this oppressive class. We are working with Socialist party of England wales and the sister organisation in Sri Lanka United socialist party. Both of were fighting to change the society for the benefit of all. United Socialist party is the only party in Sri Lanka now stand for the right to self determination upto and including separate country if it is what the Tamil speaking people in Sri Lanka wants. USP is the only alternative force in Sri Lanka that stands for the rights of minority and continue to fight despite the intimidation and death threats from Rajapakse thugs.
Tamil Solidarity: fight for the rights of workers and all oppressed people in Sri Lanka. Originally set up as Stop the Slaughter of Tamils: campaign to end the war and fight for democracy in Sri Lanka, we have organised protests against the Indian government’s support and arms sales to Sri Lanka, against the IMF loan, participated in all the major protests in London, and around Britain, supported the Parliament Square protests, and raised the issue in trade union conferences around Britain.
We stand for the unity of workers and poor people in a fight for their rights and for a future without war. We are part of an international campaign, which suppoted by Committee for workers International and it British section Socialist Party, and its Sri Lankan section United socialist party. It won the support of Booker price winning Author Arundhati Roy, British MP, labour right activist McDonald, Coventry councillor, socialist Dave Nellist and many more.The honorary president of the campaign, Joe Higgins, from Dublin, Ireland, was elected as an MEP in the recent euro elections. Tamil solidarity is also sponsored by number of Trade union branches
We stand for
No to detention camps! – Let IDP control the Aid!
Withdraw the troops! – Stop the disappearances!
Democratic rights for all!
Freedom of speech! –Freedom of press!
Support independent trade unions! – Organise all workers – Unity is strength!
For the right to self-determination!
For the mass movement of the workers and oppressed in defence of Tamils rights.
Please Join us in the fight