Tamils for Obama Praises NPC's Ananthi and Shivajilingam for Speaking for Tamils at UNHRC in Geneva

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Ananthi Sasitharan and M.K. Shivajilingam, both members of Northern Provincial Council, addressed the United Nation Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, where they asked for justice for the Tamils.

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I stand here today in front of you as a voice of the victimized Tamil people in Sri Lanka

"I stand here today in front of you as a voice of the victimized Tamil people in Sri Lanka," said Shivajilingam as he addressed the UNHRC meeting in Geneva on March 10.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank and appreciate all of you and the International Community for tirelessly working to bring justice to the Tamil people," Shivajilingam continued. "Having gone through more than 65 years of injustice and violence by successive governments of Sri Lanka, Tamil people are fully aware that neither justice nor political-solution will reach us without the direct and active involvement of the International Community and the UN.

"Hundreds of thousands of Tamil victims are seeking justice," Shivagilingam went on, "for their loved ones that were brutally and systematically killed. They want to know why a government that is supposed to protect their people bombed and killed them. Thousands of Tamil women and children desperately want to know what happened to their husbands and fathers that surrendered to the Sri Lankan military. Thousands of grieving mothers want to know where their children are. Thousands of anxious orphans wonder if their parents will ever be returning. They all are searching for answers. You can help them. Only you can help find the truth and give them justice and closure."

Shivajilingam and Ananthi attended the UNHRC session and spoke for the Tamils of the northeast of Sri Lanka. The northeastern Tamils have not been represented at the UNHRC before, and so Tamils for Obama praised Ananthi and Shivajilingam for this unprecedented action.

"These two are elected representatives of the Tamils of the northern province," said the press spokesman for Tamils for Obama. " They went to Geneva on their own initiative. This has not been done before, and it is for this that we praise and congratulate them.

"The Tamils of the diaspora as well as those of Sri Lanka are grateful to them," the spokesman said, "and we think the Tamils will remember this."

"I would like to thank specifically the U.S.," Shivajilingam said in his speech, and " the UNHRC, other sponsors, and supporting countries for bringing [up] the resolutions on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC in 2012 and 2013 and their continued leadership in ensuring justice to the victims."

"On behalf of my oppressed people," Shivajilingam said in closing his speech, "I plead for an independent international investigative mechanism in the form of Commission of Inquiry in the resolution this time, to investigate all the violations and crimes committed against the Tamil people prior to, during, and after the war. Only a Commission of Inquiry can ensure the necessary mandate, resources, and direction needed for this.

"I plead with you to include a call for finding a political solution as part of the resolution that addresses the root cause of the conflict and provides permanent relief to the Tamil people from the oppression of the Sri Lankan state."

To read Shivajilingam's complete speech click here.

To read the resolution passed by NPC calling for international war crimes probe, click here.

Tamils for Obama is a politically active group of Tamil Americans. They believe that over 70,000 Tamil civilians were massacred during the last weeks of the Sri Lankan ethnic war. They have also watched the behavior of the Sri Lankan Singhalese victors after the war, and strongly conclude that Tamils in Sri Lanka will only be safe when this unfortunate island is divided into two states.

To contact the group, call at (516) 308-2645 and speak to, or leave a message for, the Communication Director, Tamils for Obama.
Email: info(at)TamilsforObama(dot)com

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