Tamils for Obama to China: Support the UN Recommendation on Sri Lanka

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China, a growing and ambitious world power, has cultivated a relationship with the strategically located island of Sri Lanka. Tamils for Obama suggests that a role of moral leadership--in this case, support for the Report of the Secretary-General's Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka--will benefit China more in the long run than protecting Sri Lanka.

We hope that in the matter of Colombo’s culpability in its recent civil war China will pursue not power politics but the politics of moral leadership and international admiration.

New York, NY PRWEB) April 26, 2011 -- Tamils for Obama sent the following letter on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 to Chinese president Hu Jintao:

“We know that China is a growing military and economic power," said a spokesman for Tamils for Obama. "It is big and strong and getting bigger and stronger all the time.

"It is plain to us that in the future China’s influence will only grow."

"We just wrote a letter to President Hu Jintao of the People's Republic of China," the spokesman went on. "We hope we can persuade him not to use China's influence to protect its friends in Sri Lanka."

"Right now there are two important things about China," the spokesman continued, "things that are important to all the Tamils in the world. The first one is that China is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, and that gives it the power to end any action of the UN, just by exercising its veto power."

"The second important thing is that China is a great power, and is sometimes willing to use its influence to help its smaller and weaker friends. This is important to us because one of its friends is the Sri Lankan government in Colombo."

The Report of the Secretary-General’s Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka was published last Monday, the Tamils for Obama spokesman pointed out. The report referred to “Killing of civilians [by Sri Lankan government forces] through widespread shelling; (ii) Shelling of hospitals and humanitarian objects; (iii) Denial of humanitarian assistance; (iv) Human rights violations suffered by victims and survivors of the conflict, including both IDPs and suspected LTTE cadre; and (v) Human rights violations outside the conflict zone, including against the media and other critics of the Government." The report recommends international investigations.

"We hope that the People’s’ Republic of China will note and support the recommendations made in the Panel of Experts' report," explained the spokesman. "We certainly hope that China won't decide to save Sri Lanka from embarrassment by smothering the report."

"The whole world recognizes that China is a great power," the spokesman went on, "and that the Colombo government controls a strategically placed island in a large and vital ocean. It's a big temptation for China to do a favor for Sri Lanka, but we hope that China is able to resist the temptation."

"In our letter, we talked about military and economic power, which are what diplomats often refer to as 'hard power,'" the speaker forTamils for Obama continued. "We believe that China is growing into a larger role and perhaps taking their place among the world’s leading nations. We urged China to embrace the important effects of 'soft power.'"

"Soft power, as Hu Jintao is well aware, is the influence that comes from admiration and respect," the speaker said. "It will arise and increase when the peoples of the world become accustomed to thinking of China as a benign world power. The world’s nations must see China as a good moral influence and an admirable leader whose example they will willingly follow."

"We hope that in the matter of the Panel of Experts' report and Colombo’s culpability in its recent civil war," the spokesman concluded, "China will pursue not power politics but the politics of moral leadership and international admiration. We think that China and the world will benefit most from the People’s Republic taking a morally defensible and responsible position in condemning the Colombo government’s history of brutality and criminal behavior."

"We think that this is a wise and forward-looking policy, and we hope that China will adopt it," said the spokesman. "We think it will be good for China and good for the whole world, not just for Tamils."

To read the letter to Hu Jintao in English, go to:

To read the letter to Hu Jintao in Chinese, go to:

To see the entire Report of the Secretary-General's Panel of Experts on Accountability in Sri Lanka go to: http://www.tamilsforobama.com/UN_PANEL_REPORT/POE_Report_Full.pdf

Tamils for Obama is a politically active group of Tamil Americans. We supported Hillary Clinton and then Barack Obama in the Democratic primary and US general election in 2008. We believe that over 70,000 Tamil civilians were massacred during the last weeks of the Sri Lankan civil war. We have watched the behavior of the Sri Lankan Singhalese victors after the war, and we 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 (617) 765-4394 and speak to, or leave a message for, the Communication Director, Tamils for Obama.



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