Sri Lanka: European parliament calls for ceasefire

Issue 

The article below is reprinted from Tamilnet.org,
which has also published the full text of the resolution.

The European Union parliament passed a resolution on March 12, with a large majority, calling for immediate ceasefire between the Sri Lanka Army and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in order to allow the civilian population to leave the combat zone.

Condemning all acts of violence against civilians in the "safe zone" and expressing serious concern for the plight of the people in the refugee camps run by the Sri Lankan government, the EU parliament demanded full and unhindered access to international and national humanitarian organisations, as well as journalists to the combat zone and to the refugee camps.

The EU resolution, calling for an immediate ceasefire without any conditions and expressing concern not only for the plight of civilians in the safe zone, but also for the inmates of the internment camps run by Colombo, is being viewed as a significant stance by political observers.

"What the Indian parliament couldn't do has been achieved by the European Parliament. Some of the important demands the people of Tamil Nadu have been making to the Indian government have at least been heard by the European Parliament", a Chennai-based political observer commented.

The resolution was passed by 358 votes to 232.