Self-polls of Tamils make contrast to State-polls of Sri Lanka

[TamilNet, Monday, 01 February 2010, 13:16 GMT]
The conduct of the Tamil referendum in UK was exemplary and given that it was achieved entirely with private resources contrasts favourably to the shambles of Sri Lanka's recent Presidential elections, said Graham Williamson, a director of the UK based human rights group ACT NOW, set up by British Humanitarian aid workers to address war in Sri Lanka. The International Community must now call upon Sri Lanka to conduct a UN-Supervised referendum for Tamils living on the island, Mr. Williamson said adding that such an Independence referendum in 1999 put an end to a similar conflict in East Timor and has been successfully followed in recent times in Kosovo and Montenegro. "Democratic referenda is the modern and civilised mechanism to end inter-community conflicts and it's time Sri Lanka joined the modern world," he further said.

Act Now along with a selection of charities organised a ship with 884 tones of medicine and food items at the height of the war.

Following is the full text of Mr. Williamson's comments appeared in a press statement of ACT NOW on Monday:

"The high turnout (64,692) of Eezham Tamils in the U.K. for this referendum and the overwhelming YES vote (99.3%) clearly shows that, despite the end of the civil war, Tamils still believe that a seperate state in Sri Lanka is their desired solution to the continuing conflict. The conduct of the poll was exemplary and given that it was achieved entirely with private resources contrasts favourably to the shambles of Sri Lanka's recent Presidential elections.

"Act Now believes that the International Community must now call upon Sri Lanka to conduct a UN-Supervised referendum for Tamils living on the Island. Such an Independence referendum in 1999 put an end to a similar conflict in East Timor and has been successfully followed in recent times in Kosovo and Montenegro. Democratic referenda is the modern and civilised mechanism to end inter-community conflicts and it's time Sri Lanka joined the modern world".


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