Tamils for Obama Launches a Signature Campaign for a Referendum in Sri Lanka to Gain Self-Determination for Tamils

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Southern Sudan recently had a referendum asking whether the region should become a sovereign state separate from the rest of Sudan. It passed overwhelmingly and appears likely to result in a new state. Tamils for Obama is soliciting signatures for a petition asking for a similar referendum to be held in northeastern Sri Lanka and proposing an independent homeland for the region’s Tamils.

Tamils for Obama wants the US to support a referendum in Sri Lanka that will ask whether the region supports an independent, sovereign state there.

“There was a referendum in southern Sudan that asked the people there if they wanted a separate state, one not connected to the rest of Sudan, and the referendum passed overwhelmingly,” said a spokesman for Tamils for Obama. “It may lead to an actual sovereign state in what used to be the southern part of Sudan.

“The similarities to northeastern Sri Lanka are plain to all of us here at Tamils for Obama,” the spokesman said. “Southern Sudan was oppressed by a hostile and murderous central government in Khartoum, just as Sri Lankan Tamils in the northeast are oppressed by the government in Colombo. We think that the referendum in southern Sudan is a good model to follow in northeastern Sri Lanka, and we are urging President Obama to go forward with it.

“We hope to present President Obama with a petition signed by Tamils and non-Tamils everywhere expressing support for a referendum in northeastern Sri Lanka and urging Obama to push this idea forward,” said the spokesman. “We think that this is something that will appeal to his sense of racial justice and self-rule. Our hope is that he will like this idea as much as we do.

“We are going to notify certain other people,” the spokesman said. “Secretary of State Clinton, of course, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, and ambassadors representing permanent members of the UN Security Council. This petition asks for the US to ‘support and advance a referendum in Sri Lanka asking whether the Tamils should gain sovereignty within their own region,’ and we think these others will want to be aware of it.

“Of course, we hope to get a gazillion signatures, as Americans say,” the spokesman continued. “A large number will demonstrate how much support there is for this simple and just proposal.

“Our petition can be read in English, Tamil, German or French,” said the spokesman for Tamils for Obama.

To sign the petition go to: http://www.tamilsforobama.com/Referendum2011/english.asp

To read the letter to President Obama go to: http://www.tamilsforobama.com/letters/Letter_to_Obama_Referendum2011.html

To see the petition in Tamil go to: http://www.tamilsforobama.com/pressrelease/Tamil_pressrelease_Referendum2011.html

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.

Email: info(at)TamilsforObama(dot)com


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