Tamils urged to act strategically by forming partnerships with stakeholders by GTF


Tamil people and their leaders have been urged to take stock of the challenges and opportunities in the present political climate and act strategically by forming partnerships with all relevant stakeholders in Sri Lanka and in the international community.

The Global Tamil Forum (GTF), an influential diaspora group based in the UK said that the importance and urgency of securing pragmatic and tangible gains, with the objective of fulfilling the political and economic aspirations of the Tamil people, cannot be overstated.

The GTF today joined Tamils worldwide in commemorating the 11th anniversary of the end of civil war in Sri Lanka.

“The final phase of the war is one of the most brutal in recent history and mass atrocity crimes were systematically committed against the Tamil people. It is estimated that 40,000 to 70,000 Tamil civilians were killed in the final months alone, and this constitutes only a fraction of the total deaths, destruction and displacement suffered by the Tamil community during its 70-year political struggle for equality and justice in Sri Lanka,” GTF said in a statement today.

The GTF said that with the advent of the new Government six months ago, the Tamil struggle has once again entered a challenging phase.

“The Government, elected almost exclusively by the majority Sinhala-Buddhist vote, appears insensitive to the concerns and aspirations of the minority communities and bent on reversing even the minimalist reforms achieved by the previous government. The high degree of militarization of the Government apparatus (including by officers credibly accused of serious human rights abuses), the authoritarian approach to governance, and the arbitrary decision to withdraw from the UNHRC commitments, provide a stark glimpse into the challenges ahead,” the statement said.

GTF said it is important that the Tamil community remain conscious and sensitive to the immense suffering and sacrifices made by large sections of the Tamil community during the decades-long struggle.

“Equally important is that the Tamil people and their leaders take stock of the challenges and opportunities in the present political climate and act strategically by forming partnerships with all relevant stakeholders in Sri Lanka and in the international community. The importance and urgency of securing pragmatic and tangible gains, with the objective of fulfilling the political and economic aspirations of the Tamil people, cannot be overstated,” GTF said.

While remembering those who perished and suffered in innumerable ways during the Tamil struggle, the GTF said it will solemnly commit to continue to do all that is possible, however long it takes, to ensure that the Tamil people in Sri Lanka will one day constitute a confident and empowered community that will have opportunities to lead a peaceful, prosperous and fulfilling life. (Colombo Gazette)

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