Advocacy


By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Thursday, February 23 2017

Prominent activist Lena Hendry has been convicted by a court in Malaysia over the charge of screening a Sri Lankan civil war documentary without prior consent from the country’s Censorship Board. The offence is alleged to have occurred at the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall at Jalan Maharajalela on 3 July 2013. Under Section 6(1)(b) of the Film Censorship Act 2002, so-called illegal screenings carry a jail term of up to three years or a fine of up to RM30,000, or both, on conviction. The documentary in question was “No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka", directed by award-winning British filmmaker Callum Macrae. The film explores the alleged oppression of Tamils by the Sri Lankan government. The judge ruled that Hendry’s defence team had failed to raise reasonable doubt in the case, suggesting that the court had presupposed Hendry’s guilt. Hendry, who is a programme coordinator for human rights group Pusat Komas, said she was deeply disappointed by the ju  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Saturday, February 11 2017

Saturday, 11th February will mark the 21st anniversary of the Kumarapuram massacre. On this date in 1996 24 Tamil civilians, including 13 women and 9 children, were brutally murdered by the Sri Lankan security forces in the village of Kumarapuram in Trincomalee. A further 28 civilians were left with significant injuries. Two of the murdered Tamil girls had also been gang-raped. Arumaithurai Tharmaletchumi, who was 17 years old, was dragged to the village milk collection centre where she was raped and shot. Tharmaletchumi’s murder was widely reported and became a symbol of Tamil persecution during the civil war.    The massacre is believed to have been carried out in retribution following the shooting of two soldiers at the 58th milepost junction on the Kiliveddy-Muttur road, roughly half a mile from Kumarapuram. Shortly after the atrocity, the Sri Lankan government arrested a number of soldiers and home guardsmen who it was alleged had been involved. There then followed, for   Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Monday, January 09 2017

Waves of grief are like the sea. I will never stop seeking justice for my son. – Dr Manoharan     It is with deep sadness that we remember the deaths of Manoharan Ragihar, Yogarajah Hemachchandra, Logitharajah Rohan,  Thangathurai Sivanantha and Shanmugarajah Gajendran   It is now 11 years since the five Tamil students were extrajudicially executed by Sri Lanka’s Special Task Force (STF) as they celebrated the day after the new year, on a beach in Trincomalee. The ongoing Trinco-5 case  and Colombo High court’s recent acquittal all of the defendants charged with the assassination of MP Nadarajah Raviraj in 2006 should serve as a reminder of the entrenched impunity across all sectors of the government, military and the so called Colombo elites. It should also be a reminder of the systematic failure of Sri Lanka’s criminal justice system. Despite the persistent and courageous efforts by Ragihar’s father Dr.Manoharan and international Human Rights organisations including TAG for  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Friday, December 09 2016

The United Nations Committee Against Torture (UNCAT) report on Sri Lanka, calls into question President Siresena and Prime Minister Wickremesinghe’s commitment to the promised full implementation of UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution 30-1.   Contrary to recommendation 12 of the UN OISL report, not only has the Sirisena government failed to vet military and security force personnel, it has re-appointed Sisira Mendis as Chief of National Intelligence, despite his links to some of the most egregious allegations of torture. The significance of Mendis’s membership of Sri Lanka’s delegation to the UNCAT was not lost on the Committee. The report states: In this regard, the Committee was alarmed by the presence of the Chief of National Intelligence, Sisira Mendis, as part of the Sri Lankan delegation, since he was the Deputy Inspector General of the CID from March 2008 to June 2009. The Committee observed that Mr. Mendis is named in the OISL Report, which notes that the CID’s “4th F  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Thursday, November 17 2016

Over the weekend Sri Lankan President Siresena said: The international community is so satisfied with my performance that they have completely changed their impression of the country. Now there is no threat of international courts... It was essential for the country to ensure [protection of] human rights, democratic rights, fundamental rights and the freedom of the people. I have ensured that people get these rights, I have succeeded in doing that as President.   Rhetoric, both international and domestic needs to be assessed against reality. While reports do indicate a reduction of the visibility of soldiers in the North, militarization of daily civilian life in Tamil areas continues. The East is still heavily militarized. Victims and perpetrators continue to co-exist in the same space. See PEARL's report on the repression of memorialisaion in Sri Lanka and the Army's commemoratory walk in Jaffna (Nov). The military run pre-schools, hotels, ‘help’ in Temples and hospitals  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Monday, October 17 2016

The  new draft of the counter terrorism policy in Sri Lanka further demonstrates the government’s willingness to disregard the civil liberties of its people. This, unfortunately, casts further doubt on the new administration’s ability to formulate a credible strategy for transitional justice.  Any strategy will also have to address the fresh evidence of the use of cluster munitions in 2009. BACKGROUND On 20 June 2016, the Guardian published fresh evidence on the use of cluster munitions during the civil war.[1] Together Against Genocide (TAG) was the first to obtain photographs of used cluster munitions components, some of which we supplied to the Guardian.  This evidence builds upon the testimony of survivors from the former conflict zones in Sri Lanka. The report of the OHCHR Investigation on Sri Lanka (OISL) mentions their evidence at paragraph 751, 807 and 850. De-mining agencies are required to submit their reports to the National Mine Action Centre; a Government de  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Sunday, July 24 2016

Together Against Genocide commemorates the 33rd anniversary of Black July. Over the course of 7 days in July 1983, an indeterminable number of Tamils died or were displaced by targeted, state-sponsored violence. Todate Sri Lanka has not launched a criminal investigation into the pogrom nor made any effort to bring perpetrators to justice.   2016 marks a special year to remember this dark episode of the early conflict. During the June UNHRC session in Geneva, the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, recognised the need to investigate criminal liability for genocide arising from the Sri Lanka’s ethnic conflict in the wake of evidence relating to the use of cluster munitions in the No Fire Zones. Their use has been expressly banned by the Convention on Cluster Munitions (2008) and use against a civilian population could constitute a war crime.   TAG calls for any such investigation into genocide to include the events of Black July. Despite being decades apart, both episod  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Wednesday, May 18 2016

TAG Statement 18 May 2016 TAG launches Mulliyavaikkal Memorial Scholarship and Grant Programme Today, on the 7th annual Mulliyavaikkal Remembrance day, Together Against Genocide is launching the Mulliyavaikkal Memorial Scholarship and Grant Programme.   This programme is designed to encourage scholarship on issues relevant to the mass atrocities that took place in northern Sri Lankan in 2009 and to contribute to the prevention of future such crimes against humanity.   The programme is envisaged to have two components. The first provides scholars from Eelam the opportunity to study at a European or American university.  Scholars from a broad range of relevant disciplines including law, international relations, journalism, history are eligible.   The second is a grant for international (current or recent) graduate students, wishing to undertake field trips to Sri Lanka for research relevant to our core theme of memorialising, understanding and preventing mass atrocities.    Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG), On Friday, December 25 2015

It is with deep sadness that we, at Together Against Genocide (TAG) remember Joseph Pararajasingham, who was assassinated in Sri Lanka 10 years ago today while attending Christmas Mass at St Mary’s church in Batticaloa town.   Mr. Pararajasingham was 71 years old at the time he was assassinated. In addition to being the Member of Parliament for Batticaloa, a seat he had contested as part of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), he was a founding member of the North East Secretariat of Human Rights (NESOHR).   In a country that enshrines Buddhism, the religion of the majority ethnic group (the Sinhala), as the foremost religion in its constitution, to be explicitly protected and fostered by the state and where the places of worship of all non-majority religions have been systemically attacked, this assassination was also of religious significance. This attack on a christian place of worship, while an internationally mediated ceasefire was in place, was intended to signify  that no safe  Read on...

 
By Emmanuel Stoakes, On Monday, September 14 2015

 
By Together Against Genocide [TAG], On Thursday, July 09 2015

Together Against Genocide [TAG] commemorates the victims of the aerial bombing of St Peters Church and Safe Haven in Navaly by the Sri Lankan air force, 20 years ago today. We continue to  call for the investigation and prosecution of those with command responsibility for this heinous war crime.   The bombing of the St Peters Church and Safe Haven in Navaly is one of 184 discrete acts of genocide, detailed in our 2009 Model Indictment, in the period 1995 to 2002 (Eelam War III, https://www.tamilsagainstgenocide.org/Docs/Final800pIndictmentDocument.pdf).  St Peters Church was bombed by the Sri Lankan army during the government of Prime Minister Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga.   This heinous attack is a precursor that set the pattern for the later much larger scale bombing of the designated “No Fire Zones” in 2009. Our Model Indictment for Genocide was submitted to the US Department of Justice in January 2009 describes the historical context and the attack on the Navaly Church:  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide [TAG], On Wednesday, July 08 2015

Together Against Genocide is deeply disappointed at the UN Security Council (UNSC) failure to agree a resolution commemorating and recognising the Srebrenica massacre as genocide.  TAG deplores Russia’s use of its veto to deny findings unanimously determined by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in 2004 (and by the International Court of Justice in 2007). This failure is deeply hurtful to the survivors of this genocide. The Srebrenica massacre of July 1995 saw the murder of more than 8000 Bosnian Muslims by Serbian forces during the Bosnian War. In April 1993, UNSC resolution 819 declared Srebrenica a safe zone for citizens trapped in war-torn Bosnia. As part of the terms of the resolution, the entire city was to be free from any armed attack and any Bosnian Serb units were told to immediately withdraw from the areas surrounding the city. However, on 11th July 1995, under the command of Ratko Mladic, Serb forces entered the safe zone and targeted Bo  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide [TAG], On Sunday, June 28 2015

  Together Against Genocide [TAG] welcomes the prosecution of Sri Lankan Army Staff Sergeant Sunil Rathnayake for the murder of 8 civilians in Mirusuvil on 20th December 2000.   The Staff Sergeant’s prosecution is a step in the right direction to finding those responsible. Nevertheless, much more must be done to end impunity.   The Mirusuvil Massacre   The Mirusuvil Massacre took place 15 years ago under the United National Party (UNP) government of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe and the Presidency of Mrs Chandrika Kumaratunge.   TAG has been calling to find those responsible for Mirusuvil since our model indictment for the genocide of the Tamil people was filed with the US Department of Justice in February 2009.  The model indictment detailed 184 discrete acts of genocide during Eelam War III (19 April 1995 to 22 February 2002 [see https://www.tamilsagainstgenocide.org/Docs/Final800pIndictmentDocument.pdf ]. The Mirusuvil Massacre was just one of those acts:   “In the   Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Sunday, June 14 2015

London   Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) urges the South African government to comply with its obligations as an ICC member state and arrest Sudanese President Al-Bashir before he leaves the country.    The ICC has issued two arrest warrants against President Al-Bashir. The first warrant issued in 2009 is for charges including Crimes Against Humanity, whereas a second warrant issued in 2010 includes 3 counts of Genocide.    In 2008 the ICC Prosecutor presented evidence that indicated “Al Bashir masterminded and implemented a plan to destroy in substantial part the Fur, Masalit and Zaghawa groups, on account of their ethnicity. “ The Office of the ICC Prosecutor said of Al-Bashir “AL BASHIR failed to defeat the armed movements, so he went after the people. His motives were largely political.  His alibi was a ‘counterinsurgency.’  His intent was genocide. ”      The Republic of South Africa as an ICC Member is under international obligation to immediately arrest  Al-Bashir and tra  Read on...

 
By Channel 4 News, On Thursday, March 27 2014

 
By Tamil Guardian, On Friday, December 06 2013

British Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander met Friday with a delegation from various UK-based Tamil organisations, including Global Tamil Forum, Tamils Against Genocide, Tamils for Labour, Tamil Information Centre, and the Tamil National Alliance (UK).

 
By Tamil Guardian, On Thursday, November 07 2013

British Prime Minister David Cameron met with a delegation from various British Tamil organisations today, including the British Tamils Forum, Global Tamil Forum and Tamils against Genocide.

 
By The Agenda , On Friday, October 11 2013

Sri Lanka has gained a reputation as one of the most dangerous countries in the world for journalists alongside Afghanistan, Somalia, Eritrea and North Korea. By way of preview of a forthcoming Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) report on media violence in Sri Lanka, we'd like to share our perspective.

 
By UK Parliament Publications, On Friday, October 11 2013

 
By Tamil Guardian, On Tuesday, October 08 2013

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Wednesday, July 31 2013

Black July – 30 Years On   “The attack on the Tamil people is pure ethnic violence planned well ahead and executed with ruthlessness by forces close to the government”.   The quotation is taken from a letter written by the then Secretary General of the Tamil United Liberation Front and Leader of the Opposition,  Appapillai Amirthalingam, to President J.R. Jayawardene, 10th August 1983. It refers to the events of July 1983 in Sri Lanka, now known as Black July, pogroms against Tamils in which estimates posit 3000 died, but as a result of which many thousands more were left homeless and or fled the island. But the quotation could describe a multitude of events in Sri Lanka, going back 30 years and more. Replace the “by forces close to the government” with “government forces” and you have a near exact description of the systematic killing of Tamil civilians in the Vanni, 2009.   In the build up to the great spikes of violence, 1983 and 2009, in the nature of those attacks, in the af  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Thursday, July 04 2013

Why are asylum seekers so often disbelieved? How is it that clinical evidence of torture is oftentimes rejected on the grounds of ‘credibility’? Why has the UK judged so many Tamil asylum seekers not to be at risk, forcibly returning them to Sri Lanka where they have gone on to be tortured? These are questions that all those involved in asylum wrestle with. Professor Anthony Good, Professor Emeritus in Social Anthropology at the University of Edinburgh, has sought to provide answers through conducting analysis of Home Office policy documents and guidance for asylum caseworkers. TAG Litigation team has followed suit in a blog entry on freemovement blog at http://www.freemovement.org.uk/2013/07/04/why-are-asylum-seekers-disbelieved/.  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Wednesday, June 26 2013

"No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948, art. 5)   The 26th Anniversary of Convention against Torture is marked today by TAG with the determination to continue to investigate allegations of torture committed by the state of Sri Lanka and to seek justice for the victims. The Universal Declaration on Human Rights includes the prohibition of torture, to which Sri Lanka is a party. It is a central tenet in international law. The Convention Against Torture expands upon principles enshrined within human rights law to define the role of a government's ‘responsibility to protect’ its citizens. Under the treaties protecting the individual, States are prohibited from condoning or partaking in acts of torture. When torture has occurred, the State is obligated to use national law to prosecute, or to seek the assistance of the international community in the event that the State is not able   Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Saturday, May 18 2013

Press Release TAG-PR-20130518   18 May 2013 – More than just remembering   A witness recalls the horrors of her walk towards the Sri Lankan Army controlled territory on the penultimate day of the conflict, the 17th May.   “I walked, following many others, thousands. As I walked I saw the scale of the destruction, there were pools of blood and many wounded or dead. I saw a truck laden with people that had been hit by a shell not long before - the wounds were fresh. There was a mother dead, her baby still alive beside her.”   What then followed was months in an IDP camp, months punctured by torture, and upon release, the constant fear of persecution. This, 4 years on from those final days of death and surrender, is the reality of life for many Tamils in Sri Lanka.   On this anniversary, we remember those who lost their lives and those who survived them and we ask, what progress has been made in the fight for justice? The answer is sobering – far too little. This in spite of in  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Tuesday, May 07 2013

Read TAG's Submission to the Committe Against Torture, 50th Session, regarding the 5th perodic review of the United Kingdom here: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cat/docs/ngos/TAG_CAT50_UK.pdf. The executive summary reads as follows: Executive Summary TAG’s submission is restricted to questions regarding Article 3 of the UN Convention Against Torture, namely, Article 3 No State Party shall expel, return ("refouler") or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture. 2. For the purpose of determining whether there are such grounds, the competent authorities shall take into account all relevant considerations including, where applicable, the existence in the State concerned of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights. We present a summary of TAG’s evidence regarding predominantly voluntary returns to Sri Lanka who were tortured on re  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Saturday, May 04 2013

No Fire Zone is a feature length film about the final awful months of the 26 year long Sri Lankan civil war told by the people who lived through it. It is a meticulous and chilling expose of some of the worst war crimes and crimes against humanity of recent times told through the extraordinary personal stories of a small group of characters and also through some of the most dramatic and disturbing video evidence ever recorded.

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Tuesday, April 16 2013

TAG is among a number of British NGOs that have raised concerns about UKBA processes in submissions to the Select Committee for the closing date of  Monday April 15th TAG’s standing to make submissions to the UK High Court has been accepted by Mr Justice Mitting and by Lord Justice Kay; respectively in the case Tamils Against Genocide And SSHD [CO/12153/2011] and subsequent appeal at the Court of Appeal. TAG has previously intervened in two asylum cases at the Administrative Court, Queen’s Bench Division. TAG is an Interested Party in the Country Guidance Case that is currently ongoing.  Here follows a summary of point raised by TAG in our submissions to the Commons Select Committee on Asylum : We oppose scheduled charter flights altogether in the case of Sri Lanka. The effect of such flights is to assist the GoSL in identifying returnees who have or are perceived to have opposed the state, and are thus more likely to be persecuted as a result. The background evidence indicate  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Sunday, April 14 2013

On the 8th April TAG  made a direct, open request to the APPG-T to actively seize themselves of the UAE matter, with a particular focus on assisting those UNHCR accepted refugees with close connections (family) in Britain. On the 9th the request was forwarded to Lee Scott, Conservative MP and Head of the APPG-T on the 9th. They responded within hours of receipt that, while Parliament is in recess, they have drawn the issue to the attention of the relevant Minister. We make this public now in the interests of transparency - what is the government's position? We continue to seek the assistance of other relevant governments. "UAE: Imminent deportation of Tamil refugees On October 14th a boat with 46 Tamil asylum seekers was rescued by a Singaporean ship and taken to Jebel Ali Harbour, UAE. UNHCR recognized 39 of the 46 as refugees. The UNHCR has been seeking third-country resettlement on their behalf, but it has not yet been able to secure resettlement offers for 19 of them. In th  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Thursday, March 21 2013

TAG-PR-20130321   21 March 2013   Advocating the Use of the G word - GENOCIDE   In the run up to today’s HRC vote on Sri Lanka, there has been some considerable debate over how the demands of justice are to be met, and the use of the word genocide. The latter debate was sparked by the DMK’s withdrawal from the Indian central government, in a protest against the government’s position with respect to the US sponsored resolution before the HRC. The DMK demands were twofold, India should work to strengthen the resolution, not weaken it, and the word genocide should be used in the resolution.   In New Delhi last month TAG pushed for India to strengthen the resolution, to call for an International Independent Investigation, and one taken in the context of 60 years of persecution. With regards use of the word “genocide”, given our name, there can be little doubt over where we at Tamils Against Genocide stand.    The Criticisms.   Criticisms fall broadly into 2 ca  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Wednesday, March 13 2013

Version 2. 13 March 2013 The report in full is available upon request. Please email info@tamilsagainstgenocide.org or contact us via twitter @tagadvocacy. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY   This report is in part an update to the TAG report “Returnees at Risk: Detention and Torture in Sri Lanka” (hereafter ‘Returnees at Risk’) published 16 September 2012.[1] The focus of this report is the Government of Sri Lanka (hereafter GoSL) surveillance and intimidation of Tamil diaspora activists. We include in this broad category of ‘activists’ protesters who campaign for political objectives, such as devolution of the North and East of Sri Lanka, but also those who campaign for accountability for violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) including war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.    The report analyses afresh the data sets from the ‘Returnees at Risk’ report but  also presents and analyses material that has been collected by TAG since that report, namely, five interviews  Read on...

 
By Together Against Genocide (TAG, formerly Tamils Against Genocide), On Friday, February 15 2013

TAG-PR-20130215   15 February 2013   ALISTAIR BURT INTERVIEW - 1 FEBRUARY 2013   The BBC’s Charles Haviland interviewed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs Minister Alistair Burt on 1st February 2013, during an official visit to Sri Lanka.[1] In the latter half of the interview on the issue of the deportation of failed asylum seekers, Charles Haviland, noting that a number of international organisations say they have clear testimony that some of those returned to Sri Lanka have then been tortured, questioned “Is it really right that Britain should be sending them back?”   The Minister answered in no uncertain terms, “We do not have the direct evidence of which you speak. We are aware of the allegations and we’ve sought to get confirmation....So far we have not had those allegations substantiated....I look into this extremely carefully, I have just not seen this”.    On the 16 September 2012, TAG published its report “Returnees at Risk:  Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy, On Friday, November 30 2012

Statement 30th November 2012   VIOLENCE AGAINST TAMIL STUDENTS, JAFFNA, 27 - 28 NOVEMBER 2012   Tamils Against Genocide condemns the violent repression of Tamil freedom of expression by the Sri Lankan military and police forces and the accompanying destruction of collective history.   The violence against Tamil students, journalists and civilians in Jaffna on the 27th and 28 Nov 2012, occurred around the Tamil National Remembrance day, a day of remembrance for soldiers who have died in the war. This day is known in Tamil as Maaveerar Naal which translates to ‘Great Warriors Day’.  The 27th November has been widely marked as Tamil Remembrance day since the 1980s. It is often the culminating day of a week of mourning.   The Sri Lankan government has forbidden all forms of private and public mourning for those who died in the war, including any memorial or religious services as well as the private or public lighting of lamps or candles. This follows the widespread physical demoli  Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy, On Monday, November 19 2012

Press Release 19 November 2012 INTERNAL REVIEW PANEL REPORT ON SRI LANKA  Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) welcomes the release of the Internal Review Panel Report on Sri Lanka, hereafter the Petrie Report. One of the key acknowledgements of the report was of a bias towards the Sri Lankan State, despite the availability of evidence that it was the State that was the greatest perpetrator of both war crimes and crimes against humanity. Detailed at length are numerous instances of UN knowledge of and access to evidence of atrocities at the hands of the Sri Lankan state, and both the failure of the UN to effectively challenge the Rajapaksa Government regarding these crimes and abuses, and its failure to communicate them to member states.  Not only did the UN fail to report the killings by the Sri Lankan government, but, through downplaying the State’s responsibility, laid the blame squarely on the shoulders of the Tamil Tigers. Para 25, for example, records that in a UN briefing   Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy , On Thursday, November 15 2012

In a opinion piece in the Tamil Guardian, J Stafford from TAG Advocacy Team reflects upon the Univeral Periodic Review 14 of the Human Rights Council two weeks on, and all that was missed. The full article can be read at http://www.tamilguardian.c  Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy, On Thursday, November 15 2012

The UN PETRIE report examining the UN record in Sri Lanka was released yesterday, 14 November 2012. As the BBC had forewarned the reportedly strongly worded Executive Summary had been removed. So too certain sections of the text had been redacted. The black out sections on pages 66-67 referred to the UN Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide (SAPG), Francis Deng. Pg 66 reads "The Policy Committee met two days later, on 12 March, to discuss Sri Lanka. Participants noted variously that “this crisis was being somewhat overlooked by the international community”, the policy “of coordinating a series of high level visits seemed to have produced some positive results”, and that the possible involvement of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide (SAPG) would not indicate a suspicion of genocide but may add to overcrowding of UN actors involved. Participants acknowledged the apparent need for a Special Envoy but noted this “did not seem politically feasible”. Silence,   Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy, On Thursday, November 15 2012

Press Release November 2012 Sri Lanka’s continued appeal to ‘terror’ threat while the International Community ‘forget’ the Tamil question.  Tamils Against Genocide welcomes the resolute tone of several of the missions who spoke out on 1 November 2012 at the 14th UPR to condemn the Sri Lankan Government’s Human Rights Record. Notably, the US Permanent Mission to Geneva spoke of the need for political devolution, for an end to the militarisation of former conflict zones, and of the requirement for an “Independent Investigation Cell”. Though the US stopped short of calling for an International Investigation, many other missions compensated for this in calling upon Sri Lanka to ratify the Rome Statute. TAG welcomes the Canadian mission’s call for the repeal of the terror act, their mention of the conditions of detainees and the requirement for a mechanism to return IDPs and for de-militarisation. The Indian mission’s stance was also gratifyingly strong, Ms Nabanita Chakrabarti pushe  Read on...

 
By TAG Advocacy, On Tuesday, October 30 2012

 
By Tamils Against Genocide, On Sunday, September 16 2012

 
By Tag Advocacy Team, On Thursday, July 19 2012

Tamil diaspora groups from Australia, America and Europe have written to the Australian Government's Expert Panel on Asylum Seekers offering help to combat the abuse and exploitation of asylum seekers. The submission, responding to the Panel's call for civil society inputs says:  "In the context of Sri Lanka’s ongoing ethnic conflict and the attendant human rights abuses this is generating, Tamil refugee flows from the island are likely to continue unabated. Tamil Diaspora organizations wish to contribute to the safe management of these flows, working with international partners, by providing free passage on safe, managed ships to Tamils with UN refugee status.  This proposal, drawing on the global Tamil Diaspora’s resources and skills, and working with international partners, will undermine and help contain the problem of abusive and exploitative people smugglers and the risks to personal and international security their activities entail. " The full text  submitted to the  Read on...

 
By Tamils Against Genocide, On Thursday, May 17 2012

  Read on...

 
By TAGAdvocacy, On Sunday, December 11 2011

Asylum News: Swiss Federal Tribunal Judgement identifies categories at risk including victims, witnesses  of war crimes and persons from the Vanni The recent Swiss Federal Tribunal judgement sets European standards and provides clear guidelines for identifying categories of persons at risk of intimidation, torture and elimination in Sri Lanka. This judgment is far clearer and broader than present UK law and policy and identifies government critics, survivors of mass atrocities, both victims and witnesses as at risk in Sri Lanka as well as the people of the Vanni region. The UK Border Agency does not currently accept that these categories are at risk.  The Swiss judgment will be helpful to lawyers challenging UK Border Agency decisions in that the UK, regardless of the future of the EU.   Urteil E-6220/2006 vom 27. Oktober 2011 Publisher Switzerland: Tribunal administratif fédéral Country Switzerland | Sri Lanka Publica  Read on...

 
By TAG, On Tuesday, September 13 2011

In March 2009 Sri Lanka had come to the attention of the UN’s Special Adviser for the Prevention of Genocide, Francis Deng, but despite his disquiet he did not take further steps as Sri Lanka had assured him the United States and India supported its military campaign, according to a leaked US cable. The account of the meeting on March 16, 2009 between Mr. Deng and the US Ambassador to the UN, Susan Rice, as well as other US cables, shows how international inaction and silence, rather than ignorance, made it possible for Sri Lanka to continue and escalate its mass killings of Tamil civilians.    U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan RiceFrancis Deng, Special Adviser for the Prevention of GenocideRobert O'Blake, Former Ambassador to Sri LankaThe cable from the US mission to the UN in New Yorkdetails the discussion between Mr. Deng and Ambassador Rice on genocide-related issues, including the cases of Sudan and Sri Lanka.    The discussion on Sri Lanka is summarised thus:     Read on...

 
By Tamils Against Genocide , On Monday, September 12 2011

Tamils Against Genocide urges the U.S government and others to move without further delay toward an independent, international inquiry into allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Sri Lanka. In 2009 tens of thousands of Tamils were systematically killed in the final months of Sri Lanka’s ethnic conflict leading to allegations of crimes against humanity and genocide. The UN Panel of Experts has called the events a ‘grave assault on the entire regime of International Law’. The United States and others must desist from lending credibility to Sri Lanka’s sham domestic investigation the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Committee (LLRC) appointed in May 2010 by the Sri Lankan President. For the LLRC is merely a duplicitous effort to deflect international scrutiny. Ahead of Assistant Secretary Blake’s current visit to Sri Lanka, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said of the LLRC’s report: "Our first goal is to ensure that it is a good, strong,  Read on...

 
By Rajeev Sreetharan, On Wednesday, September 07 2011

TAG's Rajeev Sreetharan argues for a multinational approach of domestic litigations under universal jurisdiction as an alternative and parallel mechanism to a UN driven approach

 
By Tamils Against Genocide Legal Team, On Tuesday, August 30 2011

TAG briefing in support of clemency appeals to the Chief Minister and Governor of Tamil Nadu and the President of India in the case of Mr Murugan, Mr Perarivalan and Mr Santhan The 3 Tamils, Mr Murugan, Mr G. Perarivalan and Mr Chinna Santhan, were initially charged under the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA), which was later repealed. TADA was controversial for the following reasons: ·       It was a secret process that, in this case, took place within the jail and much of the proceedings are not available. ·       It shifted the burden of proof to the accused,  ·    The use of third degree torture to obtain information and consent by the detainee, which subsequently was relied on as evidence in the proceedings   In the absence of a public record of proceedings a defence lawyer has said that the remaining non-confession evidence was circumstantial.   The SIT chief who conducted the original police investigation later admitted to the Fr  Read on...

 
By Jan Jananayagam, On Sunday, July 24 2011

Tamils Against Genocide spokesperson speaks at the  vigil in London on July 23, 2011 to remember the victims of Black July. "Black July was, and remains, hugely symbolic for the island’s future. It was the first act of genocide in Sri Lanka to be internationally recognised - by the International Commission of Jurists, no less. To date, there has not been a single prosecution for the murders of thousands of Tamils, either in the domestic or international courts. Notwithstanding the pogrom being recognised as an act of genocide. Notwithstanding there being no limitation on time under the UN convention on prosecution for genocide.Black July remains a standing challenge to international commitment to accountability not just in Sri Lanka, but elsewhere."

 
By Jan Jananayagam, On Friday, May 20 2011

Tamils Against Genocide spokesperson delivers speech in London at a memorial for the victims of Sri Lanka's 2009 genocide of the Tamils in the Vanni region: “The British government’s delay in seeking international justice for victims of genocide must be a matter of continuing shame for our country. We as British citizens demand that the British government lives up to its international obligations, that it recognizes formally that genocide has occurred in Sri Lanka and it moves the UN Security Council, the Human Rights Council and General Assembly for an international investigation. I know that the entire British people stand with us in this demand. Because it is consistent with fairness and the rule of law, both of which are deeply held British values.”

 
By PRWEB, On Sunday, May 01 2011

Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) welcomes the publication of the advisory report submitted by the Secretary General’s Panel of Experts on 12 April 2011. The report strongly supports our position that Sri Lanka has been engaged in a genocide of the Tamil people. The Panel found credible evidence that the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) committed murder, extermination, and persecution of the Tamil population of Vanni, all of which constitute crimes against humanity (as defined in the Rome Statute of the ICC).   Read on...

 
By TamilNet, On Friday, January 21 2011

Sri Lanka's President, Mahinda Rajapakse, purportedly on a private visit to the U.S. is likely to remain in hiding with his physical whereabouts kept secret from the public to avoid another embarrassing battle with diaspora Tamils. While, as a matter of jurisprudential fairness, US Ambassador Butenis's acknowledgment that Rajapaksas have committed possible war-crimes in Sri Lanka should trigger a Justice Department investigation, Rajapakse would not have attempted to enter U.S. absent assurance from the State Department that he will not be subjected to any legal procedures. Rajapakse will also be aware that, unlike in the UK, in the US private citizens cannot apply for an arrest warrant. 

 
By TamilNet, On Thursday, January 20 2011

Comparing alleged war-criminal and Sri Lanka's current President Rajapakse's reported admission into the United States to the Clinton administration's providing entry visa to genocidaire Radovan Karadzic to enter the U.S in order to attend the Vance-Owen Peace Negotiations in New York City, Professor Francis Boyle, expert in international law at the College of Law, University of Illinois, told TamilNet that Obama administration is obligated to apprehend, investigate and prosecute alleged genocidares for violating Geneva Convention and Genocide convention. Obama administration giving Rajapakse visa to enter US and allowing him free movement is "Machiavellian Realpolitik at its worst," said Boyle.  Tamils Against Genocide spokesperson: "In the U.S. only the Justice Department can file criminal charges against individuals for war crimes. TAG's indictment document against Sri Lanka officials is already with the Justice Department. This document, together with the information collected by the State Department's war crimes division, and the recently made public contents of US diplomatic cables attaching culpability for war crimes on Rajapakses provide sufficient evidence that should exceed required "probable cause" standard to initiate investigations.  "Also, private citizens can file civil suit asking compensation for damages resulting from war-crimes. TAG intends to use this approach if the Justice Department does not act, or delays acting on, war crime charges," said the spokesperson.

 
By Jan Jananayagam, On Wednesday, December 29 2010

Disappearances are not mere ‘senseless’ manifestations of ‘lawlessness’, but a deliberate and planned effort by a state to achieve its objectives. As Amnesty International said this week, "entire communities can fracture under pressure as people fear being associated with those targeted."

 
By Jan Jananayagam, On Tuesday, November 23 2010

Both genocide and crimes against humanity are systematic and widespread acts. The difference lies in the intention behind those acts. Unlike a finding of crimes against humanity, a finding of genocide requires that prosecutors establish that the perpetrators had the intention to destroy, in whole or in part, an ethnic, national or other target group.

 
By TamilNet, On Thursday, July 01 2010

US and UK representatives of Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) and Tamil Political Action Council (USTPAC) met with Ambassador-at-large for War Crimes Issues, Stephen Rapp, and his staff at the Washington offices of the State Department on Wednesday morning, sources from Washington said. The meeting focused on the credibility of Sri Lanka's internal efforts, progress of external efforts by the US government and the United Nations, continuing militarization of the NorthEast, progress on resettlement, the expectations of the Sri Lanka's local commission, and the status of Tamil Prisoners of War. 

 
By Tamils against Genocide, On Friday, April 24 2009

A submission made in response to the inquiry announced by the Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC) on 2 April 2009. Thomas Hammarberg, The Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, in his speech entitled "Protection and Promotion of Human Rights by International Structures—dilemmas and lessons learned" (London, 7 February 2008) said:  "The international reach of [the] human rights protection is an obvious part of the principles that all human beings have the same inherent value and that the rights are universal. Those who cannot defend their rights themselves need and deserve support from the outside. They must not be left unprotected. This is a question of very basic solidarity." The Committee is invited to consider United Kingdom's response to the recent Genocide in Sri Lanka as an exemplar as part of the matters under its inquiry.

 
By TAG Advocacy Team, On Tuesday, February 24 2009

 
By Professor Francis Boyle , On Friday, February 13 2009

On 8 April 1993 and 13 September 1993 Professor Francis. A Boyle single-handedly won two World Court Orders on the basis of the 1948 Genocide Convention that were overwhelmingly in favor of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina against the rump Yugoslavia to cease and desist from committing all acts of genocide against the Bosnians.  He is the author of The Tamil Genocide by Sri Lanka: The Global Failure to Protect Tamil Rights Under International Law.  How to stop genocide by Sri Lanka against the Tamils at the International Court of Justice and the UN Security Council Today the Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) has trapped three hundred and fifty thousand Tamils in a sixty square mile area of the Vanni region where it is mercilessly, deliberately, and systematically exterminating them by means of artillery shells, cluster bombs, rockets, jet fighters, tanks, and other weapons of mass and indiscriminate slaughter.  The GOSL Defense Minister Rajapaksa has determined that this entir  Read on...