Sri Lanka: New Tamil protests against repression

Tamil women whose relatives are missing completed a three-day hunger strike at Nalloor, a town in the north of Sri Lanka, on March 8.

The women, led by Northern Provincial Council member Ananthy Sasitharan, were demanding an international investigation into the disappearance of their relatives, who were arrested or abducted by the Sri Lankan armed forces.

The women were joined by young people who had finished a four-day march from Mullivaikkaal, site of the genocidal massacre of Tamils by the army in the final stages of the war, which ended in May 2009.

Tamil National Alliance MP Suresh Premachandran, addressing the protesters, said there were at least 20,000 cases of forced disappearances in the Tamil homeland.

A new organisation called Chilampu has been formed to campaign around the issue. A statement issued by Chilampu on March 8 said: “We seek global support for the demands of international investigations on Tamil genocide and complete de-militarisation of the North-East.

“We also call upon the global community to demand the Sri Lankan state release all Tamil political prisoners and to clarify the status of the missing persons without further delay.”

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