War-affected Tamils in North resolve to boycott SL Parliamentary Election

[TamilNet, Saturday, 01 August 2015, 23:47 GMT]
The representatives of uprooted Eezham Tamils from the former ‘High Security Zone’ in Valikaamam have stated that they are going to boycott the elections. In the meantime, the main organisation representing the kith and kin of the missing persons in North has condemned the North-based political parties and alliances as well as the South-based parties, for subjecting the plight of the war-affected victims to the ‘use and throw’ politics. SL President Maithiripala Sirisena who visited Jaffna a week ago and SL Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe who visited Jaffna on Friday have failed to deliver anything concrete, the representatives of both the missing persons associations and the uprooted people from Valikaamam told TamilNet on Saturday.

The ‘association of parents and guardians of civilians arrested by Sri Lankan armed forces in North’ has sent a letter to all the political parties seeking votes in North to respond in clear terms against the attempts of deploying divide-and-conquer tactics in deceiving the relatives of the victims subjected to forced disappearances. The letter sent to political parties was released to media on 29 July.

In the letter, the group which has existed since 1997, condemned the attempt by a candidate (Ankajan of SLFP) contesting in the elections in North for deceiving a few members of the organisation to attend a protest organised as part of the election campaign and for using them for political propaganda by facilitating a meeting with SL President Maithiripala Sirisena at the residence of the candidate.

Both the SL President and SL Prime Minister have gone on record as ‘promising’ domestic commissions to investigate the whereabouts of the missing persons.

But, such commissions, launched in the past by the SL Presidents, including the current Commission on Missing Persons that was extended by the incumbent SL president, have failed to deliver anything.

The association of parents and guardians of civilians arrested by Sri Lankan armed forces in North also noted that a Tamil MP (Suresh Premachandran) had openly gone on record that he was in possession of details of a secret detention camp but could not reveal such details, as that would endanger the lives of the witnesses.

“We have demanded concrete action plans beyond the scope of election manifestos,” the statement said.

In the meantime, grassroots activists in Jaffna said all the interest groups representing the missing persons and the uprooted people in North are planning to work with Chief Minister Justice C.V. Wigneswaran in articulating their demands and taking forward their struggle.

Meanwhile, SL Minister D.M. Swaminathan, who accompanied the visiting SL Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe was canvassing for UNP stating that the ‘only way’ release the lands in North was seemed to ‘convince’ the local SL military commanders, as if the SL military commanders were the ‘ultimate decision makers’ on releasing the lands.


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