Stu Harrison

The Sri Lankan government’s fake sincerity towards the plight of the country’s Tamil minority may have impressed the Australian government, which claimed “changed circumstances” as the reason behind its decision to suspend the processing of asylum seekers from Sri Lanka for three months. But it has done nothing to resolve the ongoing oppression of the Tamil people.
Shortly before Christmas, the owners of the big three free-to-air commercial television networks, Seven, Nine and Ten, accompanied by Free TV Australia lobbyist and former Queensland ALP premier Wayne Goss met with Kevin Rudd at Kirribilli House. They cried poor and demanded corporate welfare for their “struggling” businesses.
Incumbent and Sri Lanka Freedom Party candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa has won the January 26 presidential election, receiving 58% of votes cast.
Sri Lanka was guilty of crimes against humanity for their war against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) that concluded last May, a People’s Tribunal in Dublin on January 14-16 found.
On December 23, almost one year after Israel launched its brutal war on the Palestinian Gaza Strip, the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) released its report on the situation facing Gazans.
Honduran Supreme Electoral Commission (TSE) magistrate Enrique Ortes announced on November 29 that the election run by a regime installed by a military coup had been won by the “Honduran people” and it was to be a day “recorded in gold letters”.
Israel's ongoing takeover of East Jerusalem shows it is trying to kill any hope of a negotiated settlement to Palestine’s struggle for self-determination.
Australia was one of 18 countries to vote against the United Nations Goldstone report into Israel’s December-January war on Gaza at the UN General Assembly in New York on November 5.
President of the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority (PA), Mahmoud Abbas, said on November 5 that he would not run in the presidential election scheduled for January 24.
Australia’s racist refugee policy continues to create greater horror stories. Over recent weeks, in a replay of the years of former prime minister John Howard, the prospect of masses of refugee boats landing on Australian shores have sent politicians and the corporate media into a frenzy of right-wing rhetoric.
While two boat loads of Tamil refugees fleeing Sri Lanka push their case to be admitted into Australia, two reports on Sri Lankan atrocities against Tamils have been released without a word from the Australian media or government.
The report of the United Nations’ fact-finding mission to Gaza, led by former South African jurist Richard Goldstone, was released in September. It detailed atrocious human rights abuses by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) during Israel’s December-January war on the Palestinian territory.
The Sri Lankan government has continued to use “emergency” measures justified by Sri Lanka’s 25-year civil war against the pro-independence Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to severely limit democratic rights, despite declaring a final victory in the war in May.
“The war could have finished the day before I arrived”, independent journalist and author Antony Loewenstein told Green Left Weekly of his recent trip to the besieged Palestinian territory of Gaza.
More than 50 people attended a Greenpeace meeting with paroled Japanese anti-whaling activist Toru Suzuki on September 9.
The communications chief for United Nations children’s charity UNICEF, James Elder, has been given until September 21 to leave Sri Lanka for making statements critical of the government.

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