Indiscriminate Attacks strengthen case for Tamil self-rule- Aussie MP

[TamilNet, Friday, 05 May 2006, 10:10 GMT]
"Whatever the provocation, targeting Tamil civilians by the Sri Lankan Government clearly demonstrates that it does not regard the Tamil people to be part of its population. It thus strengthens, in my view, the Tamil people's case for self determination," said Australian parliamentarion John Murphy, Member for the Federal State of Lowe, in a media release issued Friday.

Full text of the media release follows:

John Murphy letter
"In my view, the spiraling violence in Sri Lanka can only be brought to an end by implementing the Cease-Fire Agreement entered between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in February 2002.

Media reports of air strikes by the Sri Lankan regime on 25th and the 26th April are appalling in that they have resulted in the deaths of at least 15 civilians and displacement of well over 15,000 people. The air strike was claimed by the Sri Lankan Government to be retaliatory attacks mounted to avenge the bombing at the Military High Command in Colombo. Whatever the provocation, targeting Tamil civilians by the Sri Lankan Government clearly demonstrates that it does not regard the Tamil people to be part of its population. It thus strengthens, in my view, the Tamil people's case for self determination.

The failure to implement vital clauses in the Cease-Fire Agreement is, in my view, the direct cause for the spiraling violence.

In my opinion, had the Government of Sri Lanka at least implemented the Joint Mechanisms agreed between the parties to address the damage caused by the war and the damage caused by tsunami, the negotiations could have resumed. These were agreements that were reached between the Sri Lankan Government and the LTTE during the 4 year Cease-Fire. They had the potential to rebuild trust between the Sinhala and Tamil people.

I refer to the observations by the Canadian Liberal party parliamentarian, Hon. Maria Minna, following her fact finding mission to Sri Lanka in March 2005: “To be honest with you, I am not terribly positive about the possibility of getting back to peace discussions if they can’t agree on the reconstruction from the tsunami because that should be an easier one”

The implementation of the Cease-Fire Agreement is vital and the Australian Government needs to do more and use its influence with the Sri Lankan Government to end the spiraling violence.

Sri Lanka could then begin negotiations with the Tamil leadership to find an enduring political solution based on the Tamil people's right to self determination.

All of us want to see a peaceful and just resolution to the conflict in Sri Lanka.

 

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