Sri Lankan State lacks consent of Tamil people - TNA MP
[TamilNet, Thursday, 09 March 2006, 00:45 GMT]
Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam, the Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian, speaking at a symposium in Brussels, Belgium,Tuesday, explained how the Sri Lanka state failed to win the consent of the Tamil people, whom it claimed to govern. "The Tamil Nation is being consistently denied meaningful access to Governance to pursue political, economic, social and cultural development. All three Sri Lanka constitutions entrenched the unitary character of the Sri Lanka State in the face of demand for power sharing arrangement by Tamils asserting their right to self-determination," said Mr Ponnambalam.
"Not all states will enjoy inviolability of their territorial integrity, but only those states conducting themselves in compliance with the principles of equal rights and self-determination of peoples," according to the interpretation of the Paragraph 7 of the UN General Assembly's 1970 Declaration of Friendly Relations and Co-operation amang States, the TNA MP told the audience. "The EU Contribution to the Peace Process in Sri Lanka," organised by the Tamil Centre for Human Rights in Brussels on Tuesday.
Paragraph 7 which deals with the maintenance of territorial integrity, has been interpreted to recognize the legitimacy of secession under certain circumstances, Mr. Ponnambalam argued.
"It is time for the world community to live up to its obligations under International Law and recognize that the over fifty year struggle of the Tamil Nation has the sanction of International Law. That the Sri Lankan State continues to be the defaulting party as far as finding a solution to the conflict is concerned," Mr. Ponnambalam observed.
He further said: "It is also time that the International Community distinguishes a legitimate National Liberation movement like the LTTE from organizations like Al-Queda. To heap the LTTE with terrorist organizations is not only unacceptable to the Tamil people but will also embolden an intransigent and defaulting Sri Lankan State to continue to deny the Tamil Nation its right to self-determination.
Such a denial can only result in one thing, and that is the serious escalation of the conflict and nothing less," the TNA MP concluded.