Rally Urging India to Stop Supporting Tamil Genocide in Sri Lanka

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Tamils Against Genocide is organizing a rally to encourage the Indian government to emulate the ideals of Mahatma Gandhi in recognizing the freedom struggle of Tamils in Sri Lanka and stop being an accomplice to the Genocide of Tamils perpetrated by the Sri Lankan Government. The rally will be held from noon to 3 pm this Friday, January 23rd in front of the Indian Embassy (2107 Massachusetts Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20008, USA).

Hundreds of Americans from across the country will descend on D.C. to recall the image and memory of Gandhi. Rally participants will dress like Gandhi and simulate his infamous fasting by sitting in front of an empty plate, empathizing with the Tamils in Sri Lanka who are prevented by the State from getting food and medicine freely. The rally will encourage the Indian government to keep Gandhi's legacy alive, by stopping all military aid and ending its support to the genocidal regime in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka has experienced a brutal ethnic conflict since its independence in 1948, but the conflict has escalated sharply in the past year. In early 2008 the Sri Lankan government withdrew from a ceasefire and peace process with the ethnic Tamils. In September, the Sri Lankan government launched an intense military offensive against Tamil-held areas; in October, the Sri Lankan government ordered the withdrawal of international aid organizations. Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch report over 360,000 Internally Displaced Persons trapped in this region, with minimal humanitarian supplies. The Sri Lankan Government military stands accused of thousands of disappearances and killing of Tamil civilians by aerial bombing and shelling. The Government has barred the press accessing the war zone, and is complicit in the slayings of 14 journalists in the last two years.

The Genocide Prevention Project has declared Sri Lanka to be on "Red Alert" along with Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and 5 other countries due to the presence or likelihood of mass atrocities. The Indian government continues to provide financial and military support to the Sri Lankan government, which enables the continuation of the genocidal conflict there.

While asserting that Eelam Tamils are natural allies of the Indian people, the rally will call upon the Indian government to stop providing military aid to Sri Lanka, and call for the recognition of the freedom struggle of the Island's Tamils based on the principle of self-determination. India can positively contribute for regional stability and peace by effecting an immediate ceasefire in Sri Lanka and facilitating negotiations between the parties to the conflict.

Members of the Press are invited to attend the rally. To schedule interviews, please contact Dr. Paul Crossette via email: info(at)TamilsAgainstGenocide.org or by phone: 510-593-7871.

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