Sri Lankan Report Doesn't Fully Address War Crimes

Displaced Sri Lankan Tamil civilians.

I’ve been waiting for months for the final report from Sri Lanka’s Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (often referred to as the “LLRC”).  The commission had been appointed by President Rajapaksa in May 2010 to examine events during the last seven years of the war between the government and the Tamil Tigers (the war ended in May 2009 with the government’s victory over the Tigers).

The Sri Lankan government has used the existence of the commission to say that an international investigation into war crimes and other human rights abuses committed by both sides during the war in Sri Lanka wasn’t needed.  On Dec. 16, the Sri Lankan government released the LLRC’s final report.  I have to say that I’m disappointed with the report.

Amnesty International has criticized the LLRC for deficiencies in its mandate and composition, saying it lacked the necessary independence from the Sri Lankan government to fully address accountability for war crimes.  Amnesty also documented in a recent report  the deficiencies of how the LLRC operated in practice.  Sorry to say, but the LLRC’s final report bears out our earlier criticisms.

With respect to reported war crimes, the report uncritically accepts the Sri Lankan military’s version of events.  The commission does acknowledge that “considerable civilian casualties” did occur during the final phase of the conflict, but attributes responsibility for them (aside from a few incidents), directly or indirectly, to the Tigers.  Blame is laid on the Tigers with the military being largely exonerated.

The commission pointed out in the report its inability to determine the facts in some instances, including determining the number of civilian casualties and which side was responsible for shelling hospitals during the final months of the war.

The report does cover other areas besides reported war crimes; some of its recommendations could be valuable if implemented.  For example, the commission recommends that there be prosecution of the killers of Ragihar Manoharan and his four fellow students; they were killed by the security forces in Jan. 2006 but no one has been punished for this crime.  Ragihar was one of those cases for whom Amnesty members wrote as part of our 2011 “Write for Rights” event.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch have both said that the deficiencies in the LLRC’s report mean that an international investigation into war crimes and other human rights abuses is still needed in Sri Lanka.  The international community needs to take action and promptly establish such an investigation.   If the U.S. government would support us in our campaign for an international investigation, it would greatly help.

Please write the U.S. government today and add your voice to our campaign for an international investigation.  The victims of war crimes and their families in Sri Lanka have been denied truth and justice for too long.

 

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144 thoughts on “Sri Lankan Report Doesn't Fully Address War Crimes

  1. "Sri Lankan commission says military didn’t intentionally target civilians in civil war" Hahahahaha what a Joke. As Many Tamils here were Saying hundreds of time this Biased , Flawed at every level LLRC is a Joke, Sri Lanka Proved That Tamils are right. hehehehehe…..Thank you Sri lanka! The Sri Lankan Genocidal Government is Fully Responsible for the Mass murders of More than 154000 Tamil Civilians including Todlers. All Know that this War against the Innocent Tamils were well planned one. " War is often used to mask or cover up a genocide. " "Planning genocide ,encouraging or persuading others to commit genocide are also crimes." During the Genocide , more than 40,000 innocent tamil women/girls were captured and taken to military camps and they were gang raped by the sri lankan genocidal militaries. This kind of Gang rapes are still taking place in Sri lankan genocidal government militaries occupied Tamils area (North and East). Many thousands Of the gang raped victims are dead and few thousands of survivors do not want to share their experience because of the fear that they will be blamed or even rejected in the communties.
    The mass killing of Innocent tamil civilians including todlers , gang raping innocent tamil women / girls as little as 14 years old still continuing right this second. No body can deny this.

  2. Mad Mahinda War made 150 000 Tamil disabled

    Disabled Tamil man wants to die rather to live like animal in the occupied Tamil Eelam.

    There are times when Thiyagarajah Santhirakumaran, 35, wishes that he had died in Sri Lanka’s civil war. He has little to look forward to except a life of misery.

    After surviving the crippling injuries in 2006, there was more in store for Santhirakumaran. He lived through the final stages of the war 2008-2009

    when his native Mullaittivu district took the brunt of fighting between the Sri Lankan army and Tamil separatist militants.

    "It was hell, there is no other word to describe it," Santhirakumaran told IPS. "When people are running to save their own lives, who would want to
    help a cripple?"

    His life is bleak.

    Unemployed and unable to get around in a region where public transport is a luxury and the concept of special access for the disabled almost unheard
    of, he spends most of his time in the ramshackle mud hut that he calls home.

    "I don’t go out and my wife supports the family. If I had a job, I would not feel so depressed," he said. "I can’t do anything on my own, not even go
    to the toilet."

    Santhirakumaran’s case is not an isolated one.

    Thousands have been left disabled and helpless

    An estimated 10–15 percent of the over 1.1 million population of the Northern Province is estimated to be physically handicapped, according to the Sri
    Lanka Foundation for Rehabilitation of the Disabled http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=106249

  3. It’s fantastic that the GOSL bowed to international pressure and was forced to make the LLRC report public. It proves once again that non-violent activism does work. With the release of the report, the GOSL can no longer say that a domestic mechanism is ongoing. That mechanism is over, it has handed over it’s report, which has been made public, and it clearly and unambigously abosolves the military of any wrong doing.

    What’s especially noteworthy was the acceptance in the report that the GOSL declared No Fire Zones during the height of the war. It uses the term NFZ repeatedly, and even accepts as fact, that the SLA dropped fliers to civilians requesting them to go into the NFZ, thus making a solemn promise that if they heeded the GOSL’s instructions they would find safety. What’s even more shocking is that the LLRC report also agrees that this solemn promise made to the Tamil civilians was deliberately violated by the GOSL by shelling into the NFZ. Tamil civilians followed the instructions of their government and proceeded into the NFZ as instructed. The remarkable solution implemented by their own government, the GOSL, for this desperate situation, was to deliberately fire into it’s own NFZ, killing many men, women and children for no crime or fault of their own. Therefore, the LLRC report despite is conclusion, is prima facie documentation of a crime against humanity. Extraordinary. Because of the LLRC report, the following are now facts that have complete acceptance both within SL and by the UN, Diaspora groups and the IC at large

    1) The GOSL declared a NFZ (No Fire Zone) and instructed civilians to move to these areas.
    2) The Tamil civilians obeyed the GOSL instructions and proceeded into the NFZ.
    3) The Tamil civilians could not leave the NFZ because the LTTE would not let them.
    4) The GOSL instructed it’s army to fire into the NFZ while Tamil civillians were still present in them.

    Thus, the LLRC report will make it impossible for any country to support the GOSL in international fora. International intervention is now imminent. It is inescapable. Let’s try to make the most of it, and more importantly, hope that the souls of the slaughtered civilians forgive us for our crimes.

  4. Some of the recommendations of the LLRC with regard to human rights issues highlighted in this article, are nothing new. For instance LLRC recommending the need for the creation of a Special Commissioner of Investigations to investigate alleged disappearances (para 5.48) is something that had already been recommended by the All Island Commission of Inquiry into Disappearances of Persons, as far back as in May, 2000. That Commission emphasized the need for an Independent Human Rights Prosecutor to deal with cases of disappearances of persons (vide pages 16 & 17 of its Report). This recommendation was made by the Commission as it felt then that the Attorney General who was ‘the representative of the State’ dealing with such cases was undesirable, due to ‘a public perception of a conflict of interest’ .

    The LLRC has also suggested that legislation needs to be enacted to criminalize enforced disappearances (para 5.46). The Report of the said Disappearances Commission had already recommended in year 2000 that the causing of a disappearance of a person should be made a cognizable offence by an Act of Parliament ( vide page 24). Yet even the UN Convention on Disappearances of Persons has still not been ratified by the Government of Sri Lanka.

    Lets us hope these and the other recommendations of the LLRC do not suffer the same fate as the recommendations of the Commissions on Disappearances Persons and other such Commissions of the past. The Members of those Commissions were equally eminent persons as those of the LLRC and had put a lot of effort in making their recommendations. If only the recommendations had be taken seriously, many of the disappearances and human rights violations that occurred subsequently may not have been committed with impunity.

  5. In Sri Lanka there are presently 89,000 Tamil widows in the North and East

    Yoganathan Rathika is twenty-six years old and a Mad Mahinda War widow

    The widows suffered through the war, lost their homes and their husbands. Even in peacetime, the suffering continues. The war widows have a myriad of problems to deal with. Many have been newly resettled, in remote areas, in half-built houses. They also have young children to raise. To add to this, they are also faced with social insecurity.

    And all these problems, they have to deal with on their own.

    Struggles and Stigma

    “Life is very difficult. We don’t get a lot of help. Nobody really thinks of helping us,” said Rathika. Rathika goes out to find work as a labourer in order to support herself and her child. “I live in an area surrounded by forest. We have to cycle six kilometres to get to the nearest bus halt. My house is only half-built, and I am afraid to stay there alone,” she said.

    “What we need most right now is the finances to complete our houses, but this is very difficult to obtain. Nobody is willing to give us a loan, because they aren’t sure how we will be able to pay it back,” explained Rathika.

    Mahalakshmi Kurushanthan, of the Mannar Women’s Development Federation (MWDF) has been working with widows like Rathika, and has a clear insight into the problems faced by the multitude of war widows.

    “Widows have to put up with a lot of social stigma. People watch them with a very critical eye. Even when they go out to work, people are always watching them,” said Mahalakshmi.

    She went on to explain how a large number of women have been psychologically affected by their situation. Many women never found out what happened to their husbands, and were thus unable to carry out the final rites for them, as per their customs.

    Meanwhile, Co-founder of the MWDF, Shreen Saroor, pointed out that the social stigma faced by widows also proved to be a barrier when they tried to make a living.

    “Society as a whole looks down upon these women. We still have a system where widows are not treated the same as married women. They have to struggle a lot to find work. The problem is, who is going to give them market access? And if they want to go out and find work, who is going to look after their children? They need a set up where they can earn a decent living,” she said.

    Most widows in the Eastern Province are under the age of 35, according to Ithayarani Sithravel of the Voluntary Service Organization for Women, in Trincomalee. “Because of their young age, they face several social issues, and find it difficult to go out and find work,” she said, adding that “They were used to depending on their husbands for a living.”

    Those who have young children face the additional problems of having to provide them with food, and education. All these issues have been overlooked to a great extent, and these women do need assistance in dealing with their specific problems, said Ithayarani.
    http://www.thesundayleader.lk/2011/12/18/widows-o

  6. In Sri Lanka there are presently 89,000 Tamil widows in the North and East

    Yoganathan Rathika is twenty-six years old and a Mad Mahinda War widow

    The widows suffered through the war, lost their homes and their husbands. Even in peacetime, the suffering continues. The war widows have a myriad of problems to deal with. Many have been newly resettled, in remote areas, in half-built houses. They also have young children to raise. To add to this, they are also faced with social insecurity.

    And all these problems, they have to deal with on their own.

    Struggles and Stigma

    “Life is very difficult. We don’t get a lot of help. Nobody really thinks of helping us,” said Rathika. Rathika goes out to find work as a labourer in order to support herself and her child. “I live in an area surrounded by forest. We have to cycle six kilometres to get to the nearest bus halt. My house is only half-built, and I am afraid to stay there alone,” she said.

    “What we need most right now is the finances to complete our houses, but this is very difficult to obtain. Nobody is willing to give us a loan, because they aren’t sure how we will be able to pay it back,” explained Rathika.

    Mahalakshmi Kurushanthan, of the Mannar Women’s Development Federation (MWDF) has been working with widows like Rathika, and has a clear insight into the problems faced by the multitude of war widows.

    “Widows have to put up with a lot of social stigma. People watch them with a very critical eye. Even when they go out to work, people are always watching them,” said Mahalakshmi.

    She went on to explain how a large number of women have been psychologically affected by their situation. Many women never found out what happened to their husbands, and were thus unable to carry out the final rites for them, as per their customs.

    Meanwhile, Co-founder of the MWDF, Shreen Saroor, pointed out that the social stigma faced by widows also proved to be a barrier when they tried to make a living.

    “Society as a whole looks down upon these women. We still have a system where widows are not treated the same as married women. They have to struggle a lot to find work. The problem is, who is going to give them market access? And if they want to go out and find work, who is going to look after their children? They need a set up where they can earn a decent living,” she said.

    Most widows in the Eastern Province are under the age of 35, according to Ithayarani Sithravel of the Voluntary Service Organization for Women, in Trincomalee. “Because of their young age, they face several social issues, and find it difficult to go out and find work,” she said, adding that “They were used to depending on their husbands for a living.”

    Those who have young children face the additional problems of having to provide them with food, and education. All these issues have been overlooked to a great extent, and these women do need assistance in dealing with their specific problems, said Ithayarani.
    http://www.thesundayleader.lk/2011/12/18/widows-o

  7. In Sri Lanka there are presently 89,000 Tamil widows in the North and East

    Yoganathan Rathika is twenty-six years old and a Mad Mahinda War widow

    The widows suffered through the war, lost their homes and their husbands. Even in peacetime, the suffering continues. The war widows have a myriad of problems to deal with. Many have been newly resettled, in remote areas, in half-built houses. They also have young children to raise. To add to this, they are also faced with social insecurity.

    And all these problems, they have to deal with on their own.

    Struggles and Stigma

    “Life is very difficult. We don’t get a lot of help. Nobody really thinks of helping us,” said Rathika. Rathika goes out to find work as a labourer in order to support herself and her child. “I live in an area surrounded by forest. We have to cycle six kilometres to get to the nearest bus halt. My house is only half-built, and I am afraid to stay there alone,” she said.

    “What we need most right now is the finances to complete our houses, but this is very difficult to obtain. Nobody is willing to give us a loan, because they aren’t sure how we will be able to pay it back,” explained Rathika.

    Mahalakshmi Kurushanthan, of the Mannar Women’s Development Federation (MWDF) has been working with widows like Rathika, and has a clear insight into the problems faced by the multitude of war widows.

    “Widows have to put up with a lot of social stigma. People watch them with a very critical eye. Even when they go out to work, people are always watching them,” said Mahalakshmi.

    She went on to explain how a large number of women have been psychologically affected by their situation. Many women never found out what happened to their husbands, and were thus unable to carry out the final rites for them, as per their customs.

    Meanwhile, Co-founder of the MWDF, Shreen Saroor, pointed out that the social stigma faced by widows also proved to be a barrier when they tried to make a living.

    “Society as a whole looks down upon these women. We still have a system where widows are not treated the same as married women. They have to struggle a lot to find work. The problem is, who is going to give them market access? And if they want to go out and find work, who is going to look after their children? They need a set up where they can earn a decent living,” she said.

    Most widows in the Eastern Province are under the age of 35, according to Ithayarani Sithravel of the Voluntary Service Organization for Women, in Trincomalee. “Because of their young age, they face several social issues, and find it difficult to go out and find work,” she said, adding that “They were used to depending on their husbands for a living.”

    Those who have young children face the additional problems of having to provide them with food, and education. All these issues have been overlooked to a great extent, and these women do need assistance in dealing with their specific problems, said Ithayarani.
    http://www.thesundayleader.lk/2011/12/18/widows-o

  8. Mad Mahinda War made 150 000 Tamil disabled

    Disabled Tamil man wants to die rather to live like animal in the occupied Tamil Eelam.

    There are times when Thiyagarajah Santhirakumaran, 35, wishes that he had died in Sri Lanka’s civil war. He has little to look forward to except a life of misery.

    After surviving the crippling injuries in 2006, there was more in store for Santhirakumaran. He lived through the final stages of the war 2008-2009

    when his native Mullaittivu district took the brunt of fighting between the Sri Lankan army and Tamil separatist militants.

    "It was hell, there is no other word to describe it," Santhirakumaran told IPS. "When people are running to save their own lives, who would want to
    help a cripple?"

    His life is bleak.

    Unemployed and unable to get around in a region where public transport is a luxury and the concept of special access for the disabled almost unheard
    of, he spends most of his time in the ramshackle mud hut that he calls home.

    "I don’t go out and my wife supports the family. If I had a job, I would not feel so depressed," he said. "I can’t do anything on my own, not even go
    to the toilet."

    Santhirakumaran’s case is not an isolated one.

    Thousands have been left disabled and helpless

    An estimated 10–15 percent of the over 1.1 million population of the Northern Province is estimated to be physically handicapped, according to the Sri
    Lanka Foundation for Rehabilitation of the Disabled http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=106249

  9. Mad Mahinda War made 150 000 Tamil disabled

    Disabled Tamil man wants to die rather to live like animal in the occupied Tamil Eelam.

    There are times when Thiyagarajah Santhirakumaran, 35, wishes that he had died in Sri Lanka’s civil war. He has little to look forward to except a life of misery.

    After surviving the crippling injuries in 2006, there was more in store for Santhirakumaran. He lived through the final stages of the war 2008-2009

    when his native Mullaittivu district took the brunt of fighting between the Sri Lankan army and Tamil separatist militants.

    "It was hell, there is no other word to describe it," Santhirakumaran told IPS. "When people are running to save their own lives, who would want to
    help a cripple?"

    His life is bleak.

    Unemployed and unable to get around in a region where public transport is a luxury and the concept of special access for the disabled almost unheard
    of, he spends most of his time in the ramshackle mud hut that he calls home.

    "I don’t go out and my wife supports the family. If I had a job, I would not feel so depressed," he said. "I can’t do anything on my own, not even go
    to the toilet."

    Santhirakumaran’s case is not an isolated one.

    Thousands have been left disabled and helpless

    An estimated 10–15 percent of the over 1.1 million population of the Northern Province is estimated to be physically handicapped, according to the Sri
    Lanka Foundation for Rehabilitation of the Disabled http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=106249

  10. LLRC report is verbose fig leaf to cover Rajapaksa wrongdoing in conduct of war
    ranscurrents.com/news-views/archives/6757

  11. On Friday December 16, 2011, on day that the LRRC report was released after long delays Rajapakse Bros Co. hosted Colombo Night Races and Formular I car racing and Electric Peacock music at Galle Face in Colombo after closing the roads to the general public so that Colombo’s new rich and Rajapakse’s crony capitalists and the Rajapakse sons and nephews could have a good time – in a remarkably callous display of the regard that it had for the LRRC and the suffering of the minority communities.
    The LRRC report has rightly identified the arrogance of political power as the root cause of the decades of violence in Sri Lanka and asked the politicians to apologize to the people. Prior to that Mahinda Rajapakse released a photograph of himself reading the LRRC report relining in an arm chair showing the audience his feet which in many Asian Buddhist cultures is an insulting gesture – calculated to show disrespect. This shows the level to which the regime will sink when matters of singular gravity need to be addressed. These Rajapakse fellows deserve a war crimes trial and nothing less. The Sri Lanka army was professional until the last year when under Gotabaya Rajapakse it committed grave violations of a systematic nature and it was under the Rajapakse’s command that the army committed atrocities on a large scale. They have command responsibility and should be sent to the Hague. Their time will surely come.

  12. Mad Mahinda is totally responsible for innumerable crimes and human rights violations. He has committed more crimes post war in the South as well as in the North and East which have escaped attention of the international community. These Mad Mahinda war crimes must as well be examined for which he and all -Rajapakshas are directly responsible.

  13. “Sri Lankan commission says military didn’t intentionally target civilians in civil war” Hahahahaha what a Joke. As Many Tamils here were Saying hundreds of time this Biased , Flawed at every level LLRC is a Joke, Sri Lanka Proved That Tamils are right. hehehehehe…..Thank you Sri lanka! The Sri Lankan Genocidal Government is Fully Responsible for the Mass murders of More than 154000 Tamil Civilians including Todlers. All Know that this War against the Innocent Tamils were well planned one. ” War is often used to mask or cover up a genocide. ” “Planning genocide ,encouraging or persuading others to commit genocide are also crimes.” During the Genocide , more than 40,000 innocent tamil women/girls were captured and taken to military camps and they were gang raped by the sri lankan genocidal militaries. This kind of Gang rapes are still taking place in Sri lankan genocidal government militaries occupied Tamils area (North and East). Many thousands Of the gang raped victims are dead and few thousands of survivors do not want to share their experience because of the fear that they will be blamed or even rejected in the communties.
    The mass killing of Innocent tamil civilians including todlers , gang raping innocent tamil women / girls as little as 14 years old still continuing right this second. No body can deny this.

  14. It’s fantastic that the GOSL bowed to international pressure and was forced to make the LLRC report public. It proves once again that non-violent activism does work. With the release of the report, the GOSL can no longer say that a domestic mechanism is ongoing. That mechanism is over, it has handed over it’s report, which has been made public, and it clearly and unambigously abosolves the military of any wrong doing.

    What’s especially noteworthy was the acceptance in the report that the GOSL declared No Fire Zones during the height of the war. It uses the term NFZ repeatedly, and even accepts as fact, that the SLA dropped fliers to civilians requesting them to go into the NFZ, thus making a solemn promise that if they heeded the GOSL’s instructions they would find safety. What’s even more shocking is that the LLRC report also agrees that this solemn promise made to the Tamil civilians was deliberately violated by the GOSL by shelling into the NFZ. Tamil civilians followed the instructions of their government and proceeded into the NFZ as instructed. The remarkable solution implemented by their own government, the GOSL, for this desperate situation, was to deliberately fire into it’s own NFZ, killing many men, women and children for no crime or fault of their own. Therefore, the LLRC report despite is conclusion, is prima facie documentation of a crime against humanity. Extraordinary. Because of the LLRC report, the following are now facts that have complete acceptance both within SL and by the UN, Diaspora groups and the IC at large

    1) The GOSL declared a NFZ (No Fire Zone) and instructed civilians to move to these areas.
    2) The Tamil civilians obeyed the GOSL instructions and proceeded into the NFZ.
    3) The Tamil civilians could not leave the NFZ because the LTTE would not let them.
    4) The GOSL instructed it’s army to fire into the NFZ while Tamil civillians were still present in them.

    Thus, the LLRC report will make it impossible for any country to support the GOSL in international fora. International intervention is now imminent. It is inescapable. Let’s try to make the most of it, and more importantly, hope that the souls of the slaughtered civilians forgive us for our crimes.

  15. Some of the recommendations of the LLRC with regard to human rights issues highlighted in this article, are nothing new. For instance LLRC recommending the need for the creation of a Special Commissioner of Investigations to investigate alleged disappearances (para 5.48) is something that had already been recommended by the All Island Commission of Inquiry into Disappearances of Persons, as far back as in May, 2000. That Commission emphasized the need for an Independent Human Rights Prosecutor to deal with cases of disappearances of persons (vide pages 16 & 17 of its Report). This recommendation was made by the Commission as it felt then that the Attorney General who was ‘the representative of the State’ dealing with such cases was undesirable, due to ‘a public perception of a conflict of interest’ .

    The LLRC has also suggested that legislation needs to be enacted to criminalize enforced disappearances (para 5.46). The Report of the said Disappearances Commission had already recommended in year 2000 that the causing of a disappearance of a person should be made a cognizable offence by an Act of Parliament ( vide page 24). Yet even the UN Convention on Disappearances of Persons has still not been ratified by the Government of Sri Lanka.

    Lets us hope these and the other recommendations of the LLRC do not suffer the same fate as the recommendations of the Commissions on Disappearances Persons and other such Commissions of the past. The Members of those Commissions were equally eminent persons as those of the LLRC and had put a lot of effort in making their recommendations. If only the recommendations had be taken seriously, many of the disappearances and human rights violations that occurred subsequently may not have been committed with impunity.

  16. In Sri Lanka there are presently 89,000 Tamil widows in the North and East

    Yoganathan Rathika is twenty-six years old and a Mad Mahinda War widow

    The widows suffered through the war, lost their homes and their husbands. Even in peacetime, the suffering continues. The war widows have a myriad of problems to deal with. Many have been newly resettled, in remote areas, in half-built houses. They also have young children to raise. To add to this, they are also faced with social insecurity.

    And all these problems, they have to deal with on their own.

    Struggles and Stigma

    “Life is very difficult. We don’t get a lot of help. Nobody really thinks of helping us,” said Rathika. Rathika goes out to find work as a labourer in order to support herself and her child. “I live in an area surrounded by forest. We have to cycle six kilometres to get to the nearest bus halt. My house is only half-built, and I am afraid to stay there alone,” she said.

    “What we need most right now is the finances to complete our houses, but this is very difficult to obtain. Nobody is willing to give us a loan, because they aren’t sure how we will be able to pay it back,” explained Rathika.

    Mahalakshmi Kurushanthan, of the Mannar Women’s Development Federation (MWDF) has been working with widows like Rathika, and has a clear insight into the problems faced by the multitude of war widows.

    “Widows have to put up with a lot of social stigma. People watch them with a very critical eye. Even when they go out to work, people are always watching them,” said Mahalakshmi.

    She went on to explain how a large number of women have been psychologically affected by their situation. Many women never found out what happened to their husbands, and were thus unable to carry out the final rites for them, as per their customs.

    Meanwhile, Co-founder of the MWDF, Shreen Saroor, pointed out that the social stigma faced by widows also proved to be a barrier when they tried to make a living.

    “Society as a whole looks down upon these women. We still have a system where widows are not treated the same as married women. They have to struggle a lot to find work. The problem is, who is going to give them market access? And if they want to go out and find work, who is going to look after their children? They need a set up where they can earn a decent living,” she said.

    Most widows in the Eastern Province are under the age of 35, according to Ithayarani Sithravel of the Voluntary Service Organization for Women, in Trincomalee. “Because of their young age, they face several social issues, and find it difficult to go out and find work,” she said, adding that “They were used to depending on their husbands for a living.”

    Those who have young children face the additional problems of having to provide them with food, and education. All these issues have been overlooked to a great extent, and these women do need assistance in dealing with their specific problems, said Ithayarani.

    http://www.thesundayleader.lk/2011/12/18/widows-of-war/

  17. Mad Mahinda War made 150 000 Tamil disabled

    Disabled Tamil man wants to die rather to live like animal in the occupied Tamil Eelam.

    There are times when Thiyagarajah Santhirakumaran, 35, wishes that he had died in Sri Lanka’s civil war. He has little to look forward to except a life of misery.

    After surviving the crippling injuries in 2006, there was more in store for Santhirakumaran. He lived through the final stages of the war 2008-2009

    when his native Mullaittivu district took the brunt of fighting between the Sri Lankan army and Tamil separatist militants.

    “It was hell, there is no other word to describe it,” Santhirakumaran told IPS. “When people are running to save their own lives, who would want to
    help a cripple?”

    His life is bleak.

    Unemployed and unable to get around in a region where public transport is a luxury and the concept of special access for the disabled almost unheard
    of, he spends most of his time in the ramshackle mud hut that he calls home.

    “I don’t go out and my wife supports the family. If I had a job, I would not feel so depressed,” he said. “I can’t do anything on my own, not even go
    to the toilet.”

    Santhirakumaran’s case is not an isolated one.

    Thousands have been left disabled and helpless

    An estimated 10–15 percent of the over 1.1 million population of the Northern Province is estimated to be physically handicapped, according to the Sri
    Lanka Foundation for Rehabilitation of the Disabled
    http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=106249

  18. LLRC report is verbose fig leaf to cover Rajapaksa wrongdoing in conduct of war
    ranscurrents.com/news-views/archives/6757

  19. On Friday December 16, 2011, on day that the LRRC report was released after long delays Rajapakse Bros Co. hosted Colombo Night Races and Formular I car racing and Electric Peacock music at Galle Face in Colombo after closing the roads to the general public so that Colombo’s new rich and Rajapakse’s crony capitalists and the Rajapakse sons and nephews could have a good time – in a remarkably callous display of the regard that it had for the LRRC and the suffering of the minority communities.
    The LRRC report has rightly identified the arrogance of political power as the root cause of the decades of violence in Sri Lanka and asked the politicians to apologize to the people. Prior to that Mahinda Rajapakse released a photograph of himself reading the LRRC report relining in an arm chair showing the audience his feet which in many Asian Buddhist cultures is an insulting gesture – calculated to show disrespect. This shows the level to which the regime will sink when matters of singular gravity need to be addressed. These Rajapakse fellows deserve a war crimes trial and nothing less. The Sri Lanka army was professional until the last year when under Gotabaya Rajapakse it committed grave violations of a systematic nature and it was under the Rajapakse’s command that the army committed atrocities on a large scale. They have command responsibility and should be sent to the Hague. Their time will surely come.

  20. Mad Mahinda is totally responsible for innumerable crimes and human rights violations. He has committed more crimes post war in the South as well as in the North and East which have escaped attention of the international community. These Mad Mahinda war crimes must as well be examined for which he and all -Rajapakshas are directly responsible.

  21. Dear Jim,
    Why not tell the world what really happened.

    Amnesty, Human Rights Watch and the International Crisis Group were invited to attend and give submissions to the LLRC. Instead like the spoilt children you are, you collectively refused to attend the hearings on the ridiculous grounds that the LLRC wasn't prefect enough for you. How could you have been so daft?

    Ordinary Tamil civilians testified in their hundreds, despite being threatened by paramilitaries, whilst you pampered human rights activists, whose entire reason for being is to (allegedly) protect and defend human rights boycotted the LLRC hearings.

    You should've been there to give objective and hard-hitting evidence directly to the LLRC and embolden Sri Lanka's own HR organisations. Instead, you sat on your hands in New York and London sipping your frappucinos and continued the war crimes nonsense from afar, allying yourselves with the dregs of the overseas LTTE activists. e.g. Canadian Tamil 'activists' (i.e. pro-Eelam Canadian Tamil Congress, including its hilariously named leader, Mr. Poop) raising over $50,000 to "help" Amnesty.
    http://amnesty.akaraisin.com/Common/Event/Home.as

    Tell us also how you intend to pressure the US govt to punish Sri Lanka whilst simultaneously launching a campaign to indict Pres. Bush for his own 'war crimes' and 'torture' sins.

    A reasonable person can only conclude that Amnesty has indeed left Earth orbit and is now operating from Kepler 2, the recently discovered, earth-like planet, almost 600 light years away.

  22. Dear Jim,
    Why not tell the world what really happened.

    Amnesty, Human Rights Watch and the International Crisis Group were invited to attend and give submissions to the LLRC. Instead like the spoilt children you are, you collectively refused to attend the hearings on the ridiculous grounds that the LLRC wasn't prefect enough for you. How could you have been so daft?

    Ordinary Tamil civilians testified in their hundreds, despite being threatened by paramilitaries, whilst you pampered human rights activists, whose entire reason for being is to (allegedly) protect and defend human rights boycotted the LLRC hearings.

    You should've been there to give objective and hard-hitting evidence directly to the LLRC and embolden Sri Lanka's own HR organisations. Instead, you sat on your hands in New York and London sipping your frappucinos and continued the war crimes nonsense from afar, allying yourselves with the dregs of the overseas LTTE activists. e.g. Canadian Tamil 'activists' (i.e. pro-Eelam Canadian Tamil Congress, including its hilariously named leader, Mr. Poop) raising over $50,000 to "help" Amnesty.
    http://amnesty.akaraisin.com/Common/Event/Home.as

    Tell us also how you intend to pressure the US govt to punish Sri Lanka whilst simultaneously launching a campaign to indict Pres. Bush for his own 'war crimes' and 'torture' sins.

    A reasonable person can only conclude that Amnesty has indeed left Earth orbit and is now operating from Kepler 2, the recently discovered, earth-like planet, almost 600 light years away.

  23. Dear Jim,
    Why not tell the world what really happened.

    Amnesty, Human Rights Watch and the International Crisis Group were invited to attend and give submissions to the LLRC. Instead like the spoilt children you are, you collectively refused to attend the hearings on the ridiculous grounds that the LLRC wasn't prefect enough for you. How could you have been so daft?

    Ordinary Tamil civilians testified in their hundreds, despite being threatened by paramilitaries, whilst you pampered human rights activists, whose entire reason for being is to (allegedly) protect and defend human rights boycotted the LLRC hearings.

    You should've been there to give objective and hard-hitting evidence directly to the LLRC and embolden Sri Lanka's own HR organisations. Instead, you sat on your hands in New York and London sipping your frappucinos and continued the war crimes nonsense from afar, allying yourselves with the dregs of the overseas LTTE activists. e.g. Canadian Tamil 'activists' (i.e. pro-Eelam Canadian Tamil Congress, including its hilariously named leader, Mr. Poop) raising over $50,000 to "help" Amnesty.
    http://amnesty.akaraisin.com/Common/Event/Home.as

    Tell us also how you intend to pressure the US govt to punish Sri Lanka whilst simultaneously launching a campaign to indict Pres. Bush for his own 'war crimes' and 'torture' sins.

    A reasonable person can only conclude that Amnesty has indeed left Earth orbit and is now operating from Kepler 2, the recently discovered, earth-like planet, almost 600 light years away.

  24. Velayutham wrote:

    Balachandran, another 12 old Tamil boy saw his whole family butchered by Sri Lanka Army.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    I saw similar , on DBS website

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (12) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.

    How anyone can be so cold hearted to kill a helpless child ?

    The child was in Sri Lanka Army custody.

    Sri Lanka Army proudly shows off the dead child pictures after Sri Lanka Army brutally killed the child
    http://www.nowpublic.com/world/balachandrans-dead

    I could not imagine what agony this small child went through before his murder

    This a cowardly act !!

    Do these people have children ?

  25. One child saw his father, mother, brother and two sisters blown to bits in front of his eyes and another child was murdered by Sri Lanka Army. This a kind gift to the Tamil nation from the Rajapaksa ,a “ZERO civilian casualties” guy. :(

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (11) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.
    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/3016

  26. A twenty-eight year old Tamil man from Chunnakan, Jaffna was killed in police custody and his body dumped in a river

    Sri Skandaraja Sumanan, a twenty eight year old man was taken into custody by two persons in civilian dress who identified themselves as officers from the Police Intelligence Services. He was taken into custody at the junction of Punnaly Kattuwan, in front of a barber shop. He sat between the two officers on their motorcycle and was taken to the Jaffna Police Station.

    Friends who heard about the incident went to the Jaffna Police Station to see him but they were told that he had been transferred to Chunnakan Police Station. When they went to that police station they could not find him.

    Later one of his relatives and the twenty seven year old brother of Sri Skandaraja Sumanan were told by the police that Sumanan was dead and to come to Kilinochchi and identify the body. The police have stated that they found the body in a canal and that it was sent to the Polonnaruwa District Hospital for post mortem examination. The examination was held on November 26, 2011 and the burial was held on November 27th. At the post mortem about 40 injury marks were found and the relatives are of the view that they were caused by torture in police custody.

    The police version is that Sumanan fled from police custody and had fallen into the canal where he drowned. The police also stated that Sumanan was wanted for several robberies in the area. This has been denied by the relatives. According to the relatives he was a patient taking treatment from the psychiatric ward at Monthai, Point Pedro.

    The relatives state that he had been tortured at the police station and his body was thrown into the canal by the police.

    Similar stories relating to custodial deaths are often heard in Sri Lanka. The police always claim that the death was due to persons falling in rivers or waterways while escaping from custody. Or the police claim that they had to shoot the detained person because he tried to snatch some weapons and attack them. It is now a cynical joke, popularly told in Sri Lanka that people who are taken into custody often die in this manner.

    Despite of repeated calls on the government by various groups in Sri Lanka and also from the international community the Sri Lankan government continues to ignore calls for proper inquiries and for the imposing of discipline in the police service.

    At the 47th Session of the Committee against Torture in their concluding observations the committee made the following recommendation to the government of Sri Lanka:

    The Committee urges the State party to investigate promptly, thoroughly and impartially all deaths of detainees assessing any possible liability of law enforcement officers and prison personnel, and provide, where appropriate punishment of the perpetrators and compensation to the families of the victims.

    The State party should provide comprehensive data regarding reported cases of deaths in custody, disaggregated by location of detention, sex, age, ethnicity of the deceased and cause of death.

    The Asian Human Rights Commission urges a thorough investigation into the death of Sri Skandaraja Sumanan to be conducted by a Special Investigation Unit of the Criminal Investigation Division. Further the AHRC urges the government to heed the recommendation by the CAT Committee cited above and to take appropriate action to implement these recommendations.

  27. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka

    1948 The Citizenship Act disenfranchising Indian Tamil Plantation workers was passed in Parliament. One million 3rd generation plantation workers had been living in the island for over 115 years. They were brought to the island by the British from South India to work in Tea and Rubber plantations in the hill country. 100,000 plantation Tamils were victimised.(Violation of UDHR article – 21)

    Sinhala colonisation – As a result of many years of State planned Sinhala colonisation since 1948 in the Tamil homeland (North and East), the Sinhala governments and its destructive agents plundered and robbed 50% of the ancestral lands of the Tamils in the North East of Sri Lanka.(Violation of UDHR articles – 17)

    1956 The “Sinhala Only” Act was passed in the Sri Lankan Parliament. This Act made Tamils second class citizens in the island. Tamils staged peaceful protests in Colombo and Gal Oya. 150 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 20 Women were raped; 3000 were made refugees and their properties were looted by Sinhala mobs.(Violation of UDHR article – 2, 3, 5, 12, 17 )

    In 1957, the “Banda Chelva” pact and in 1965 the “Dudley-Chelva” pact. These agreements were based on a quasi-federal system devolving certain powers to the Tamils in the North East province. These were the first of several agreements and pacts signed between Tamil leaders and Sinhala leaders to resolve the political turmoil in the country, that were unilaterally abrogated by Sri Lanka.

    1958 Anti Tamil riots in Sinhala areas. Massacre of Tamils, looting of their properties, setting fire to their houses. 25,000 Tamils were made refugees; 500 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 200 Women were raped and Tamil properties were looted or destroyed by Sinhala mobs.(Violation of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 5, 12, 17)

    1961 Tamil non-violent (Satyagraha) civil disobedience campaign in the North and East was disrupted by the security forces, protesters were beaten and arrested.(Violation of UDHR articles – 5, 9, 20)

    1964 The Pact (Srima-Shastri) to evacuate Tamil plantation workers of Indian origin was signed. They were living in the island for over 131 years. 650,000 Plantation Tamils became stateless persons.(Violation of UDHR articles – 4, 15, 23)

    1972 Equal education opportunities for Tamil students were denied. Standardisation on University admission was introduced.(Violation of UDHR article – 26)

  28. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka II

    1974 The Fourth International Tamil research Conference held on 10/01/1974 in Jaffna was disrupted by the Sri Lankan Police. 9 Tamils were brutally killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 20, 27)

    1977 In July, Tamil United Liberation Front-TULF, contested and won overwhelmingly at the Parliamentary election giving them a mandate to exercise the “Right to Self-determination” and establish Tamil Eelam in the North East. In 1983 August 8, Sri Lankan government enacts the 6th amendment to the constitution and rejected the right to self-determination of the Tamil people, the mandate voted by the Tamils in 1977 general election.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8, 10, 21)

    1979 July, Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) was introduced in Sri Lanka. This Act gives a free hand to the Security forces to arrest, detain, torture, rape, kill and dispose bodies with impunity. Arrested people could be detained for three months without being produced in courts.(Violations of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)

    1981 The Jaffna Public Library containing 95,000 volumes was completely destroyed in a fire set by a group of Police officers who went on a rampage in the Jaffna city on May 31, 1981. 95, 000 volumes of unrecoverable-invaluable books were burnt.(Violations of UDHR articles – 2, 21, 24, 27)

    1983 Since independence in 1948, more than 35 years of peaceful non-violent struggle by the Tamils protesting against Sinhala oppression, were suppressed by violent means by the Sri Lankan security forces, inflicting loss of many lives and much material damage to the Tamils.(Violations of UDHR articles – 3, 4, 5,9,13,20)

    1983 The Government masterminded anti-Tamil riots in July 83. More than 6,000 Tamils were killed by the Sinhalese in the South. Tamil houses and businesses were looted and destroyed. Tamils living in the South were sent in ships to the North and East by the government.

    250,000 Tamils were made refugees; 2,500 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 500 Women were raped; 53 Tamil political prisoners were brutally murdered in the maximum security Welikada prison on 25-27th July. Sinhala extremist groups and thugs, ruined the socio-economic and the political rights of the Tamil people. Anti-Tamil riots also in 1956, 1958, 1977, and 1981.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 17, 23, 24, 25, 26)

  29. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka III

    1984 – To date Tamils living in the North-East were arrested, tortured and killed. Women were raped, many disappeared. Tamil properties were looted or destroyed by the Sri Lankan security forces. Air Force bombers dropping Cluster bombs in residential areas and near IDPs camps causing severe loss and damage to Tamil people and their property.

    The Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and the Emergency Regulations (ER) adopted by the government are helped the security forces to carry out all sorts of human rights violations with impunity.(UDHR was completely violated)

    1990 – To date Economic embargo in Tamil areas. Food, medicine, electricity and other important items are denied to the Tamils.(Violations of UDHR articles – 22, 25, 26)

    1995 – On 15th November, the NGO Forum took place at Bentota Beach Hotel, in Bentota, in the South of Sri Lanka. Both foreign and local NGO representatives participated in this forum and this forum meeting was disrupted by anti-NGO demonstrators. The organisers of the NGO forum decided to shift the venue to the capital, Colombo. On 16th November, the NGO Forum re-convened in the morning at a conference hall in Ratmalana, police officers arrived to “request” the Forum to suspend its proceedings, claiming that the meeting was illegal! The meeting was dissolved and all attendees dispersed.(Violations of UDHR articles – 8, 13, 18, 19, 20)

    1997 – On 25th September, 38 NGOs serving in several parts of Batticaloa district, were ordered by Government of Sri Lanka to cease all their humanitarian operations. This immediately followed a government order banning NGOs from assisting people in the areas of Batticaloa.(Violations of UDHR articles – 8, 13, 18, 19, 20)

    1998 – the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances stated that,“Sri Lanka had the second highest number of disappearances in the world, ranking next to Iraq”.

    Also Sri Lanka was the only country that the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances had visited several times. So far no proper remedies had been found for these disappearances.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,4,5,7,9,10,11)

    2005 – with the aim of ensuring equal distribution of Tsunami aid to the worst affected North East, an agreement known as the Post Tsunami Operational Management Structure – PTOMS was signed between the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE. This was unilaterally abrogated by the government of Sri Lanka under the pretext of a Supreme Court judgement.(Violation of UDHR articles – 16, 25)

    At this time, over 85,000 Tamil people had been killed or “disappeared”; more than 12,500 Tamil women raped and killed; more than 2500 buildings of Tamils’ religious places of worship (Churches and Temples) destroyed in aerial bombings and artillery shelling and billions of rupees worth of material damage had been caused to the Tamils by the Sri Lankan government.

    As a result of well planned ethnic cleansing by the Sinhala State, nearly 500,000 Tamil people were internally displaced and more than 500,000 Tamils’ have sought political asylum in Europe and other countries.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 16, 16,17)

    2005 – 7th January, the UN Secretary General made a humanitarian visit to Sri Lanka to see the Tsunami affected areas. When Kofi Annan requested to visit the North East, the areas in the island most affected by the tsunami, the Sri Lankan authorities deliberately prevented him from making a humanitarian visit there.

    (Violation of UDHR articles – 13,25 & a serious violation of the United Nations Charter, Chapter XV Article 100.

  30. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka IV

    2006 – Sri Lankan citizens cannot seek remedy from the UN Human Rights Committee – Even though Sri Lanka is signatory to the ICCPR, on 15 September 2006, the Supreme Court effectively ruled that Sri Lankan citizens cannot seek remedy from the UN Human Rights Committee regarding human rights violations. It declared that the accession to the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in 1997 does not bind Sri Lanka and has no legal effect within the island.– Decision of the Supreme Court 15 September 2006 – SC Spl (LA) No 182/99.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8, 10,19)

    2006 – Sri Lanka’s Air Force bombed a gathering of schoolgirls at Vallipunam on August 14, 2006, killing 56 schools girls and wounding 210 others.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 10,12,13,20,26)

    2006 – The India and Sri Lanka accord was signed in 1987 under the guise of settling the Tamil ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. Under this accord the merger of North Eastern province took place on 8 Sep.1988. But, after exactly 18 years, The Supreme Court delivered its political judgement on 16 October 2006, stating that the merger of these two provinces was invalid.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,9,10,13,21)

    2007 – Sri Lanka was ranked third most dangerous place for the media in the world, with many journalists having been killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,6,7,10,13,18,19)

    2008 – Sri Lanka withdrew from the Ceasefire Agreement-CFA between the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE that was signed in February 2002.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,9,10,13,)

    2008 – According to the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, presently Sri Lanka rank as the country with the highest number of disappearances. The fate of 656 Tamils who ‘disappeared’ in 1996 was not yet known but Tamils continued to ‘disappear’ in North East. Many Tamil journalists, academics, parliamentarians, human rights activists, children and others in the North East were killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,4,5,7,9,10,11)

    2008 – IIGEP quit Sri Lanka – President Rajapaksa had invited the International Independent Group of Eminent Persons – IIGEP to observe and ensure the transparency of investigations held by the Commission of Inquiries on the complaints of abductions, disappearances and other serious violations of human rights arising since 1st August 2005. Also, the IIGEP was to ensure that those inquiries were conducted in accordance with basic international norms and standards. On 22 April 2008, the IIGEP, quit Sri Lanka, citing government unwillingness to implement its recommendations to bring the probe up to international standards, lack of financial stability, government interference and slow process.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8,10)

    2009 – Sri Lanka government and their security forces committed War crimes and Genocide against the Tamil people. This has been well recorded by all international human rights organisations and the United Nations. Furthermore these serious violations have been documented and screened by the TV Channel 4, UK.(Violation of UDHR and other international conventions)

    2010 – The UN Secretary-General’s appointed panel submitted a report on War Crimes in Sri Lanka on 12 April 2001. This was subsequently transferred to the UN High commissioner for Human Rights and the President of the Human Rights Council on 13 September 2011. However no action was taken.

    Persistent violations of the UDHR and other international conventions continue unabated despite increasing international pressure on Sri Lanka.

  31. Dear Jim,
    Why not tell the world what really happened.

    Amnesty, Human Rights Watch and the International Crisis Group were invited to attend and give submissions to the LLRC. Instead like the spoilt children you are, you collectively refused to attend the hearings on the ridiculous grounds that the LLRC wasn’t prefect enough for you. How could you have been so daft?

    Ordinary Tamil civilians testified in their hundreds, despite being threatened by paramilitaries, whilst you pampered human rights activists, whose entire reason for being is to (allegedly) protect and defend human rights boycotted the LLRC hearings.

    You should’ve been there to give objective and hard-hitting evidence directly to the LLRC and embolden Sri Lanka’s own HR organisations. Instead, you sat on your hands in New York and London sipping your frappucinos and continued the war crimes nonsense from afar, allying yourselves with the dregs of the overseas LTTE activists. e.g. Canadian Tamil ‘activists’ (i.e. pro-Eelam Canadian Tamil Congress, including its hilariously named leader, Mr. Poop) raising over $50,000 to “help” Amnesty.

    http://amnesty.akaraisin.com/Common/Event/Home.aspx?seid=4176&mid=8

    Tell us also how you intend to pressure the US govt to punish Sri Lanka whilst simultaneously launching a campaign to indict Pres. Bush for his own ‘war crimes’ and ‘torture’ sins.

    A reasonable person can only conclude that Amnesty has indeed left Earth orbit and is now operating from Kepler 2, the recently discovered, earth-like planet, almost 600 light years away.

  32. Dear Jim,

    As many other peace loving citizens of Sri Lanka , I did not expect anything more than this form your side . No wonder why your organization has earned the sobriquet "carrion fowls" among ordinary Sri Lankans .

    Sri Lanka fought a war against one of the world's most ruthless terrorist outfit in the world . During the three decades that this terror group committed horrendous atrocities against people of Sri Lanka , your organization did nothing but trying to white wash the same terror group. Your selective "concerns" were always against the democratically elected government who had struggled to save its people against terrorism . It is only after we defeated the terror group that you have developed a sudden interest to investigate "war crimes" committed by "both" parties.

    It is clear that the escalating and continuation of violence and human sufferings in Sri Lanka and the world over is beneficial for your organization . However, Mr. Jim we have suffered enough and we do not need any more trouble in our country whether you like it or not. Please find some other troubled country to make your living.

    Finally, it is funny that you want us to write to the U.S. government requesting its involvement to the issue . Do you seriously believe that world is still considering the U.S. as a Human Rights Champion? Perhaps 2-3 decades ago , but not anymore , the whole world knows that the West led by the U.S, is now fighting one of the most dirtiest war in the human history . There are dangerous war criminals walk freely in the U.S. , some even honored with peace awards who should be brought into books before any Sri Lankan official.

    To be frank , it is not out of our great love for the government of Sri Lanka that large majority of Sri Lankans oppose to an international investigation over war crimes in our country . It is purely because of the extremely biased nature of parties , including Amnesty that push for the move makes us unite against it . The past and present behavior of your organization towards Sri Lanka , has given us sufficient conviction that you have no moral right to talk about human rights in our country.

    Amnesty does everything but promoting human rights in the world.

    Thank you .

    Nava J

  33. What a shame!!

    Torture in Sri Lanka custody is endemic trough out the island.

    Roy Samathanam, who was tortured Sri Lanka custody said

    The torture went on and on continuously. Sri Lanka prison guards tie the prisoners upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the Sri Lanka officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison. In Sri Lanka many of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,” Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.”
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6472

  34. Velayutham wrote:

    Balachandran, another 12 old Tamil boy saw his whole family butchered by Sri Lanka Army.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    I saw similar , on DBS website

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (12) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.

    How anyone can be so cold hearted to kill a helpless child ?

    The child was in Sri Lanka Army custody.

    Sri Lanka Army proudly shows off the dead child pictures after Sri Lanka Army brutally killed the child
    http://www.nowpublic.com/world/balachandrans-dead

    I could not imagine what agony this small child went through before his murder

    This a cowardly act !!

    Do these people have children ?

  35. Velayutham wrote:

    Balachandran, another 12 old Tamil boy saw his whole family butchered by Sri Lanka Army.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    I saw similar , on DBS website

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (12) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.

    How anyone can be so cold hearted to kill a helpless child ?

    The child was in Sri Lanka Army custody.

    Sri Lanka Army proudly shows off the dead child pictures after Sri Lanka Army brutally killed the child
    http://www.nowpublic.com/world/balachandrans-dead

    I could not imagine what agony this small child went through before his murder

    This a cowardly act !!

    Do these people have children ?

  36. One child saw his father, mother, brother and two sisters blown to bits in front of his eyes and another child was murdered by Sri Lanka Army. This a kind gift to the Tamil nation from the Rajapaksa ,a “ZERO civilian casualties” guy. :(

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (11) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.
    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/3016

  37. One child saw his father, mother, brother and two sisters blown to bits in front of his eyes and another child was murdered by Sri Lanka Army. This a kind gift to the Tamil nation from the Rajapaksa ,a “ZERO civilian casualties” guy. :(

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (11) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.
    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/3016

  38. No more excuses, it is time to act http://www.tamilguardian.com/article.asp?articlei
    Now that Sri Lanka's farcical attempt at accountability – the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report – has finally been published, there can be no more excuses. The LLRC has for too long been the international community's fig leaf, used by governments across the world, including the US and the UK, to stall calls for accountability and a credible investigation into allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The commission's inquiry, its findings and its recommendations serve only to further vindicate the overwhelming justification for an independent, international investigation. For the victims, justice is well overdue. The time to act is now.

    The LLRC is the by-product of sustained international pressure following the horrific findings of the UN expert panel, and Sri Lanka's desperation to stave off any meaningful investigation and subsequent discovery of truth. For governments across the world, it has been convenient to support Sri Lanka's assertion that the LLRC would answer the serious allegations made by the UN expert panel. However, it should come as no surprise that the LLRC report falls far short of this. The international community's willingness to play along with Sri Lanka's theatrics has been dismaying and deplorable. It has revealed a shameful disregard for the much preached about doctrine of universal human rights and the proclamation of 'never again'.

    Making a mockery of any serious allegations, the words 'war crimes' only feature twice in the entire LLRC report. Never in the main body of the text, 'war crimes' only crop up during the citation of other reports by human rights organisations, one on Sri Lanka and the other on Israel. Undoubtedly, the emergence of compelling and damning evidence of atrocities, forced the commission to concede that some violations of human rights did take place. It would have simply been untenable to tow the Sri Lankan government's long held, official line of zero civilian deaths and maintain even the pretence of credibility. Beyond this meagre admission however, the report dismisses any notion of a 'systematic', 'persecution' of Tamil civilians by Sri Lanka's armed forces and the 'deliberate' targeting of civilian establishments – key assertions made by the UN expert panel – as untruths.

    Criminal responsibility for atrocities is conveniently deflected from those in power. Ignoring the testimonies of a significant number of witnesses that identify a clear chain of command, and thereby command responsibility to crimes, the report urges the prosecution of individual soldiers if found guilty. Even if such witness testimony is negated, the scale of civilian deaths in Sri Lanka could not have taken place without the knowledge of the most senior military officials. International law is uncompromising in this regard – responsibility for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide goes to the very top. In the case of Sri Lanka, the defence secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the then head of the army, General Sarath Fonseka, and the commander in chief – the president – Mahinda Rajapaksa are principally answerable.

    TNA wants accountability mechanism for Sri Lanka http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/articl
    Calling upon the international community to establish a “mechanism for accountability” to bring to book the perpetrators of war crimes during the last stages of the Eelam War that ended in May 2009, the Tamil National Alliance on Monday said the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability”.

  39. More lies from Mad Mahinda Government !!

    Readers will find no big surprises after reading the final report of Sri Lanka’s Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

    It is very much what most people were expecting. A document that looks to the future, exonerates the military, does not touch on the question of accountability and includes some touchy-feely language about the country’s need to move forward and forget the mass murder of the innocent…

    Essentially, all civilian casualties were the result of people caught in the crossfire or were the LTTE’s fault.

    While the LTTE deliberately targeted civilians, it appears that Sri Lanka’s military -surprise, surprise – did not ?????… according to the LLRC report. That assertion goes against what most people seem to think, including the report produced by the United Nation’s Panel of Experts. In order to determine “questions of State responsibility,” the LLRC report goes on to note that an “international tribunal” would be unhelpful because there just is not enough evidence about what actually happened during the final phase of the conflict. Essentially, it would be nearly impossible to “re-create” what actually occurred in a court of law. The Commission found that it was just too challenging to give even an estimate of civilian casualties during the end of the war.

    The Commission also found it difficult to determine what happened regarding the shelling of hospitals. Although, it is clear to the Commission that Sri Lankan military personnel never intentionally went after civilians in the No Fire Zones(NFZs) either.

    The report talks about remuneration for victims/survivors, especially civilians. Again, this is not a big surprise either. Most people thought that the LLRC Report would recommend that the government “throw some money” at a few people.

    Although, the responsible entity for doing so, the Rehabilitation of Persons, Properties and Industries Authority (REPPIA) is currently suffering from a lack of funds so it is uncertain how that will play out in the years to come.

    The Commission’s analysis of the current challenges facing Sri Lanka appears to be slightly more realistic than the rest of the report. Land issues, minority rights and the possibility that militarization in the North might be a bit too much are all mentioned.

    So, Sri Lankans and the international community must be patient, of course. Wait, wait, wait—there is always something to wait for in the pursuit of accountability in Sri Lanka. And of course the Commission has found that the most responsible way to approach accountability and the pursuit of national reconciliation would be to establish some additional “independent” bodies to help achieve this.

    There is some fluffy prose in LLRC but not offering any political solution to address the long-term grievances of the Tamil people.

    LLRC is obviously a weak report, and, in some ways, undoubtedly weaker than what even the most pessimistic people were expecting.

  40. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story

    I’m a Canadian citizen. I went to Sri Lanka in 2005 to get married. My wife was pregnant, so I decided to stay there for a while. The terrorist investigation division came to my house, after two years, in 2007. They wanted to check some items–phones or mobile phones–I had imported from Singapore.

    They checked the mobile phones and then they asked for $25,000 as ransom. I refused. At that time my wife brought out my Canadian passport and told them that I was a Canadian citizen who had come there to get married. She told them that we had a kid and that she was four months’ pregnant with our second child.

    They said they just had to get a statement and would release me in 15 minutes. They were not civil and didn’t show any ID, so I refused to give them money. I told them that I didn’t have that kind of money, anyway, to give. Then they blindfolded and handcuffed me and took me to an office somewhere in the city of Colombo, near the harbour. It was an illegal detention centre, just an old building where they keep suspects or detainees. There were about 50 to 60 people. They handcuffed me to the table 24/7. It was an office. I was always kept handcuffed there. The other detainees were kept in a small cell downstairs.

    They said that if I could give them money or confess that I was a LTTE member, they would release me. I said that I needed a lawyer, or at least I wanted to see someone from the Canadian embassy. So after about one week, someone from the Canadian embassy came to see me, and even when I talked to the embassy official, an intelligence officer was right beside me. They didn’t want to discuss anything about the case. I didn’t know what the case was all about.

    The Canadian embassy official suggested some lawyers’ names, but there was no lawyer and no court. They didn’t take me to court. I was in detention for one year, just for an inquiry. And the defence secretary, the one who signed the order for me to be detained under the emergency regulation, signed it every three months. I was just kept in that building for one year. During that period, I was handcuffed in the daytime, and at night I slept over the table or downstairs, down on the floor. When they arrested me, they first punched me, and then later on, they didn’t do anything. After about a week, they again said that I had to write a confession.

    They said that I had to confess that I was an LTTE member from Canada. They said that they knew there were a lot of LTTE people, Tamils, in Canada and that the Canadian government was helping the LTTE. They told me to say all of that and to write a confession in my native language of Tamil and sign it, and that they would then take it to court and release me. I told them that I was not going to do that.

    After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,“Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.” They kept on assaulting me for about 10 minutes and then left. Then the next day, the ICRC came in, and I complained to the ICRC about it. I was handcuffed and pulled and further beaten up. They told me that they were going to punish me and send me to a detention camp in Boossa in southern Sri Lanka

  41. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story II

    While I was in the TID headquarters office, people were routinely tortured. That was normal. You had to go through that. They didn’t torture me, I guess, to that extent, because the ICRC and the Canadian embassy used to visit me. But what they did do was mentally…. They chained me, and if I wanted to go to the toilet, they would say no. I was diabetic and wanted my medication, but they said that they could not give it to me. Finally, the Canadian embassy managed to give me some metformin and check my blood sugar, which was around 15.5 or something. I was very drowsy.

    They didn’t understand. They kept on doing this for a very long time. After about six or seven months, they said that if I did not sign the confession, if I did not agree with it, they would send me to Boossa, the worst detention centre in southern Sri Lanka. So I was sent there. They put me in a small cell in an old building, built I think about a hundred years ago. It was a small cell with no lights and no toilets

    They would give me an hour just to wash my face, or whatever, but if I wanted to go to the toilet in-between, they just gave me a shopping bag and a bottle to urinate into. I had to go to the toilet in a shopping bag. When they would take me for questioning, it was in an open area. I would see people being tortured. They tie them upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them.

    It happens every single day. Women are sexually abused and beaten. They don’t give you a chair; you have to kneel down and wait there. That’s the way they question you. It goes on and on. Then finally the Canadian embassy came and I said I couldn’t stay there, that I had to go back to Colombo, that they had to do something. They said they couldn’t get involved because it was domestic law. They could give consular service, but could not do much. I understood that situation.

    But then I was taken again to Colombo and told that they were going to arrest my wife. My daughter was a year old, a Canadian citizen. My wife was five months’ pregnant, so they wanted to bring my wife. In the meantime, my [Inaudible--Editor] was in custody at the Colombo office. My wife and kids were under house arrest for one week. Basically they could not leave the house. There were two police officers guarding the house. My brother would do the groceries and just throw them over the wall. There was no communication, all the phones were taken.

  42. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story III

    They were under house arrest for two weeks. They arrested me under the emergency regulations. Under the emergency regulations, after three months they have to produce me in court. But they never produced me in court. There was no judge, nothing at all for one year.

    After I came from Boossa to the Colombo court house, they said they were going to rape my wife and kill my pregnant wife’s child, that he’s a Tiger too, so they might as well kill all of them. Under emergency regulations, they can arrest anyone and keep them for one or two years. I said I would write any confession they wanted. I said I needed a lawyer, but I didn’t get a lawyer, nothing at all. He had his own notes. I had to write my confession in Tamil, sign it, date it, and give it back. They said once I gave it I would be released. So they got the confession, produced it in the high court, and filed charges against me. My phone had a GPS and they said that GPS was banned in Sri Lanka. I didn’t know; I never saw the GPS. I saw the phone, but the phone had a GPS device. I didn’t know what they were saying. I never saw them produce any legal documents at all. Once I signed the confession, they took me back again to Boossa detention centre and kept me there. That is the main reason I want to share this.

    The detainees were continually tortured. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. We had only one hour when we could go to the toilet, or wash our face, or whatever. Basically, they wanted a confession from me. I forgot to tell you that I was in the TID headquarters. Mr. Nord, the special adviser from the United Nations, visited us. I have that report here. He visited us and he wanted to talk to the detainees, but they kept me up there in the office. They didn’t want me to talk with him because I can speak the language. I can speak all three languages, and I would be speaking them in English. I saw him just passing by, but they didn’t allow me to talk to him.

    After he visited my detention centre, he gave a report. It’s all there, what he thought about it: the gasoline, chili powder, and iron pipes and wooden posts to hit you. It went on and on continuously. Some of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. There were no charges laid against them, so they’re still there. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison, so anyone can go and see them. They’re still in the Sri Lankan prison. I have their names. They’re still there, but because of the confessions they wrote, the judge looked at the confessions and said,“You are guilty”. The judge gave them five years or ten years. They are doing their sentences right now.

  43. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story IV

    One Mr. Tissainayagam was with me; he’s a journalist too. He was in the same detention centre. Now he’s in the U.S. That is the situation. Different groups came and inquired of me. It might have been the National Intelligence Bureau, military intelligence, or the Karuna group, the pro-government LTTE. They came from the LTTE; now it’s the Karuna group. They just came and talked to me for five minutes. There are different intelligence organizations and they come in and just get information and go.

    After that day, they remanded me to the Welikada prison, the main prison in Sri Lanka, and put me in with other convicts, not the LTTE, because there’s a different building for LTTE suspects only.

    They put me in with other prisoners, Sinhalese prisoners. I got continuous abuse from them and from the guards who were saying,“You are Canadian…”. They beat me up and didn’t give me water to bathe and things like that. I was going through hell. Then finally I got fed up and asked what the charges were. I told my lawyer,“You have to do something”. The lawyer talked to the attorney general’s department. The charges were that I had plotted to kill the army commander of Sri Lanka, Sarath Fonseka, had been following VIP ministers, and was giving information to the LTTE. A lot of charges were framed against me. But finally the attorney general’s department said, okay, but they could not just release me like that, but told me to just plead guilty for having a GPS and that they would make a deal with the attorney general. They told my lawyer to do that.

    So finally I pleaded guilty in high court to having a GPS. I got a fine of five lakhs and the judge told me I was free to go. So there was a five-lakhs fine for having a GPS, and they dropped all the charges about killing the general and following all the ministers and everything. Everything was done, so I was freed.

  44. What a shame!!

    Torture in Sri Lanka custody is endemic trough out the island.

    Roy Samathanam, who was tortured Sri Lanka custody said

    The torture went on and on continuously. Sri Lanka prison guards tie the prisoners upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the Sri Lanka officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison. In Sri Lanka many of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,” Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.”
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6472

  45. What a shame!!

    Torture in Sri Lanka custody is endemic trough out the island.

    Roy Samathanam, who was tortured Sri Lanka custody said

    The torture went on and on continuously. Sri Lanka prison guards tie the prisoners upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the Sri Lanka officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison. In Sri Lanka many of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,” Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.”
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6472

  46. Every one of the commissions or investigations and inquiries established by the Sri Lankan government to examine human rights violations or establish what happened around particular incidents did not result in justice for any of the victims.

    There was nothing there. :(

    The legal process was just not followed through in Sri Lanka.

  47. No more excuses, it is time to act http://www.tamilguardian.com/article.asp?articlei
    Now that Sri Lanka's farcical attempt at accountability – the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report – has finally been published, there can be no more excuses. The LLRC has for too long been the international community's fig leaf, used by governments across the world, including the US and the UK, to stall calls for accountability and a credible investigation into allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The commission's inquiry, its findings and its recommendations serve only to further vindicate the overwhelming justification for an independent, international investigation. For the victims, justice is well overdue. The time to act is now.

    The LLRC is the by-product of sustained international pressure following the horrific findings of the UN expert panel, and Sri Lanka's desperation to stave off any meaningful investigation and subsequent discovery of truth. For governments across the world, it has been convenient to support Sri Lanka's assertion that the LLRC would answer the serious allegations made by the UN expert panel. However, it should come as no surprise that the LLRC report falls far short of this. The international community's willingness to play along with Sri Lanka's theatrics has been dismaying and deplorable. It has revealed a shameful disregard for the much preached about doctrine of universal human rights and the proclamation of 'never again'.

    Making a mockery of any serious allegations, the words 'war crimes' only feature twice in the entire LLRC report. Never in the main body of the text, 'war crimes' only crop up during the citation of other reports by human rights organisations, one on Sri Lanka and the other on Israel. Undoubtedly, the emergence of compelling and damning evidence of atrocities, forced the commission to concede that some violations of human rights did take place. It would have simply been untenable to tow the Sri Lankan government's long held, official line of zero civilian deaths and maintain even the pretence of credibility. Beyond this meagre admission however, the report dismisses any notion of a 'systematic', 'persecution' of Tamil civilians by Sri Lanka's armed forces and the 'deliberate' targeting of civilian establishments – key assertions made by the UN expert panel – as untruths.

    Criminal responsibility for atrocities is conveniently deflected from those in power. Ignoring the testimonies of a significant number of witnesses that identify a clear chain of command, and thereby command responsibility to crimes, the report urges the prosecution of individual soldiers if found guilty. Even if such witness testimony is negated, the scale of civilian deaths in Sri Lanka could not have taken place without the knowledge of the most senior military officials. International law is uncompromising in this regard – responsibility for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide goes to the very top. In the case of Sri Lanka, the defence secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the then head of the army, General Sarath Fonseka, and the commander in chief – the president – Mahinda Rajapaksa are principally answerable.

    TNA wants accountability mechanism for Sri Lanka http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/articl
    Calling upon the international community to establish a “mechanism for accountability” to bring to book the perpetrators of war crimes during the last stages of the Eelam War that ended in May 2009, the Tamil National Alliance on Monday said the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability”.

  48. No more excuses, it is time to act http://www.tamilguardian.com/article.asp?articlei
    Now that Sri Lanka's farcical attempt at accountability – the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report – has finally been published, there can be no more excuses. The LLRC has for too long been the international community's fig leaf, used by governments across the world, including the US and the UK, to stall calls for accountability and a credible investigation into allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The commission's inquiry, its findings and its recommendations serve only to further vindicate the overwhelming justification for an independent, international investigation. For the victims, justice is well overdue. The time to act is now.

    The LLRC is the by-product of sustained international pressure following the horrific findings of the UN expert panel, and Sri Lanka's desperation to stave off any meaningful investigation and subsequent discovery of truth. For governments across the world, it has been convenient to support Sri Lanka's assertion that the LLRC would answer the serious allegations made by the UN expert panel. However, it should come as no surprise that the LLRC report falls far short of this. The international community's willingness to play along with Sri Lanka's theatrics has been dismaying and deplorable. It has revealed a shameful disregard for the much preached about doctrine of universal human rights and the proclamation of 'never again'.

    Making a mockery of any serious allegations, the words 'war crimes' only feature twice in the entire LLRC report. Never in the main body of the text, 'war crimes' only crop up during the citation of other reports by human rights organisations, one on Sri Lanka and the other on Israel. Undoubtedly, the emergence of compelling and damning evidence of atrocities, forced the commission to concede that some violations of human rights did take place. It would have simply been untenable to tow the Sri Lankan government's long held, official line of zero civilian deaths and maintain even the pretence of credibility. Beyond this meagre admission however, the report dismisses any notion of a 'systematic', 'persecution' of Tamil civilians by Sri Lanka's armed forces and the 'deliberate' targeting of civilian establishments – key assertions made by the UN expert panel – as untruths.

    Criminal responsibility for atrocities is conveniently deflected from those in power. Ignoring the testimonies of a significant number of witnesses that identify a clear chain of command, and thereby command responsibility to crimes, the report urges the prosecution of individual soldiers if found guilty. Even if such witness testimony is negated, the scale of civilian deaths in Sri Lanka could not have taken place without the knowledge of the most senior military officials. International law is uncompromising in this regard – responsibility for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide goes to the very top. In the case of Sri Lanka, the defence secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the then head of the army, General Sarath Fonseka, and the commander in chief – the president – Mahinda Rajapaksa are principally answerable.

    TNA wants accountability mechanism for Sri Lanka http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/articl
    Calling upon the international community to establish a “mechanism for accountability” to bring to book the perpetrators of war crimes during the last stages of the Eelam War that ended in May 2009, the Tamil National Alliance on Monday said the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability”.

  49. Glaringly obvious truth with the lawyers and judges in Sri Lanka(SL) is that even when they know the law they do not seem to know justice. Justice requires wisdom.

    A priveleged class, created not on merit but on unearned legal privilege, controls the writing of rules and how they are applied in SL.

    Lawyers with expertise in international law know with certainty that SL is an illegal country- like the former Southern Rhodesia of Ian Smith- declaring itself as a republic in 1972, making Tamil Eelam(TE) as its colony, at a period of decolonisation of coutries, following a UN resolution that all the colonies should be handed over to the native owners.

    Internal justice has become an impossibility in most of the former and present colonies, compelling affected citizens to seek external justice.

    During the third week of October 2011, the 9th US Court of Appeal in San Francisco, under a US law known as the Alien Tort Statute, decided to proceed with a lawsuit filed on behalf of 10,000 of present and former residents of the South Pacific island of Bougainhville, where a late 1980s uprising led to the use of military force and many deaths.

    In this litigation, non US residents have filed a lawsuit against a non US company based in Britain, without even an office in the US.

    Rio Tinto is accused of racial discrimination, crimes against humanity and covering up complicity in war crimes and genocide.

    The US appeal court Judge Mary Schroeder said “The complainant alleges purposeful conduct undertaken by Rio Tinto with the intent to assist in the commission of violence, injury and death, to the degree necessary to keep its mine open”.

    A lawsuit against the GOSL and its allies is imminent in the US courts, alleging the military, the GOSL and its allies of violence, injury and death of Tamils, with the intent to keep TE as its colony.

  50. LLRC was constituted with predominantly Sinhala, and the poignant admissions and clear recommendations of several grievances of the minority communities is very significant. I am sure that the Sinhala Chauvinists would go into overdrive to counter this fresh impediment to their unabated progress. The question is, whether the MR Regime has the back bone to sincerely to sincerely implement the recommendations; I very much doubt it! :(

  51. Tamil Women’s Insecurity in the North and East: Gender-based violence

    Tamil Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources.

    Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone.

    Tamil women and girls vulnerable at multiple levels. In the Vanni in particular, their housing is inadequate, and they have limited means of transportation and employment opportunities. Many do not have sufficient funds to feed their families, let alone to care for those who were maimed or disabled in the war. The continuing search for the missing and the struggle to maintain relations with the detained are further strains.

    Tamil women have been forced into prostitution or coercive sexual relationships. Some have also been trafficked within the country and abroad. Pregnancies among teenagers have increased. Fear of abuse has further restricted women’s movement and impinged on education and employment opportunities. The fact that women must rely on the military for everyday needs not only puts them at greater risk of gender-based violence, but also prevents them from building their own capacity within communities. The island-wide spate of attacks on women by individuals labelled “grease yakas (devils)”, which reached the north and east in August and into September 2011, and the lack of serious response by the security forces (except to brutally crack-down on protesters across the north and east, and especially in Jaffna), exposed the near-complete collapse of trust in law enforcement.

    Instead of recognising these vulnerabilities and taking steps to protect women and girls, the government has largely ignored them. The heavily militarised and centralised systems of control in the north and east exclude most residents, but especially women from decisions that affect their security. While there are some female civilian officials and some programs nominally directed at women, all activities occur within a male, Sinhalese, military structure. The government has constrained access for international humanitarian organisations and even more so for local civil society. The vision of security the government has pursued is a masculine, militarised one. Human security is lacking.

    The current situation in the north and east comes in the wake of serious accusations of sexual violence by the military against Tamil women at the end of the war and in the months thereafter. There is credible evidence to support some of these accusations. Yet cultural stigma, decades of impunity, and the government’s refusal to allow any independent investigation of the end of the war and its aftermath make it impossible to determine the full extent of misconduct. In a well-known rape case in the north in June 2010, criminal prosecution has been pending for eighteen months against four soldiers
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6843

  52. Tamil Women’s Insecurity in the North and East: Gender-based violence

    Tamil Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources.

    Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone.

    Tamil women and girls vulnerable at multiple levels. In the Vanni in particular, their housing is inadequate, and they have limited means of transportation and employment opportunities. Many do not have sufficient funds to feed their families, let alone to care for those who were maimed or disabled in the war. The continuing search for the missing and the struggle to maintain relations with the detained are further strains.

    Tamil women have been forced into prostitution or coercive sexual relationships. Some have also been trafficked within the country and abroad. Pregnancies among teenagers have increased. Fear of abuse has further restricted women’s movement and impinged on education and employment opportunities. The fact that women must rely on the military for everyday needs not only puts them at greater risk of gender-based violence, but also prevents them from building their own capacity within communities. The island-wide spate of attacks on women by individuals labelled “grease yakas (devils)”, which reached the north and east in August and into September 2011, and the lack of serious response by the security forces (except to brutally crack-down on protesters across the north and east, and especially in Jaffna), exposed the near-complete collapse of trust in law enforcement.

    Instead of recognising these vulnerabilities and taking steps to protect women and girls, the government has largely ignored them. The heavily militarised and centralised systems of control in the north and east exclude most residents, but especially women from decisions that affect their security. While there are some female civilian officials and some programs nominally directed at women, all activities occur within a male, Sinhalese, military structure. The government has constrained access for international humanitarian organisations and even more so for local civil society. The vision of security the government has pursued is a masculine, militarised one. Human security is lacking.

    The current situation in the north and east comes in the wake of serious accusations of sexual violence by the military against Tamil women at the end of the war and in the months thereafter. There is credible evidence to support some of these accusations. Yet cultural stigma, decades of impunity, and the government’s refusal to allow any independent investigation of the end of the war and its aftermath make it impossible to determine the full extent of misconduct. In a well-known rape case in the north in June 2010, criminal prosecution has been pending for eighteen months against four soldiers
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6843

  53. Tamil Women’s Insecurity in the North and East: Gender-based violence

    Tamil Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources.

    Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone.

    Tamil women and girls vulnerable at multiple levels. In the Vanni in particular, their housing is inadequate, and they have limited means of transportation and employment opportunities. Many do not have sufficient funds to feed their families, let alone to care for those who were maimed or disabled in the war. The continuing search for the missing and the struggle to maintain relations with the detained are further strains.

    Tamil women have been forced into prostitution or coercive sexual relationships. Some have also been trafficked within the country and abroad. Pregnancies among teenagers have increased. Fear of abuse has further restricted women’s movement and impinged on education and employment opportunities. The fact that women must rely on the military for everyday needs not only puts them at greater risk of gender-based violence, but also prevents them from building their own capacity within communities. The island-wide spate of attacks on women by individuals labelled “grease yakas (devils)”, which reached the north and east in August and into September 2011, and the lack of serious response by the security forces (except to brutally crack-down on protesters across the north and east, and especially in Jaffna), exposed the near-complete collapse of trust in law enforcement.

    Instead of recognising these vulnerabilities and taking steps to protect women and girls, the government has largely ignored them. The heavily militarised and centralised systems of control in the north and east exclude most residents, but especially women from decisions that affect their security. While there are some female civilian officials and some programs nominally directed at women, all activities occur within a male, Sinhalese, military structure. The government has constrained access for international humanitarian organisations and even more so for local civil society. The vision of security the government has pursued is a masculine, militarised one. Human security is lacking.

    The current situation in the north and east comes in the wake of serious accusations of sexual violence by the military against Tamil women at the end of the war and in the months thereafter. There is credible evidence to support some of these accusations. Yet cultural stigma, decades of impunity, and the government’s refusal to allow any independent investigation of the end of the war and its aftermath make it impossible to determine the full extent of misconduct. In a well-known rape case in the north in June 2010, criminal prosecution has been pending for eighteen months against four soldiers
    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6843

  54. A twenty-eight year old Tamil man from Chunnakan, Jaffna was killed in police custody and his body dumped in a river

    Sri Skandaraja Sumanan, a twenty eight year old man was taken into custody by two persons in civilian dress who identified themselves as officers from the Police Intelligence Services. He was taken into custody at the junction of Punnaly Kattuwan, in front of a barber shop. He sat between the two officers on their motorcycle and was taken to the Jaffna Police Station.

    Friends who heard about the incident went to the Jaffna Police Station to see him but they were told that he had been transferred to Chunnakan Police Station. When they went to that police station they could not find him.

    Later one of his relatives and the twenty seven year old brother of Sri Skandaraja Sumanan were told by the police that Sumanan was dead and to come to Kilinochchi and identify the body. The police have stated that they found the body in a canal and that it was sent to the Polonnaruwa District Hospital for post mortem examination. The examination was held on November 26, 2011 and the burial was held on November 27th. At the post mortem about 40 injury marks were found and the relatives are of the view that they were caused by torture in police custody.

    The police version is that Sumanan fled from police custody and had fallen into the canal where he drowned. The police also stated that Sumanan was wanted for several robberies in the area. This has been denied by the relatives. According to the relatives he was a patient taking treatment from the psychiatric ward at Monthai, Point Pedro.

    The relatives state that he had been tortured at the police station and his body was thrown into the canal by the police.

    Similar stories relating to custodial deaths are often heard in Sri Lanka. The police always claim that the death was due to persons falling in rivers or waterways while escaping from custody. Or the police claim that they had to shoot the detained person because he tried to snatch some weapons and attack them. It is now a cynical joke, popularly told in Sri Lanka that people who are taken into custody often die in this manner.

    Despite of repeated calls on the government by various groups in Sri Lanka and also from the international community the Sri Lankan government continues to ignore calls for proper inquiries and for the imposing of discipline in the police service.

    At the 47th Session of the Committee against Torture in their concluding observations the committee made the following recommendation to the government of Sri Lanka:

    The Committee urges the State party to investigate promptly, thoroughly and impartially all deaths of detainees assessing any possible liability of law enforcement officers and prison personnel, and provide, where appropriate punishment of the perpetrators and compensation to the families of the victims.

    The State party should provide comprehensive data regarding reported cases of deaths in custody, disaggregated by location of detention, sex, age, ethnicity of the deceased and cause of death.

    The Asian Human Rights Commission urges a thorough investigation into the death of Sri Skandaraja Sumanan to be conducted by a Special Investigation Unit of the Criminal Investigation Division. Further the AHRC urges the government to heed the recommendation by the CAT Committee cited above and to take appropriate action to implement these recommendations.

  55. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka

    1948 The Citizenship Act disenfranchising Indian Tamil Plantation workers was passed in Parliament. One million 3rd generation plantation workers had been living in the island for over 115 years. They were brought to the island by the British from South India to work in Tea and Rubber plantations in the hill country. 100,000 plantation Tamils were victimised.(Violation of UDHR article – 21)

    Sinhala colonisation – As a result of many years of State planned Sinhala colonisation since 1948 in the Tamil homeland (North and East), the Sinhala governments and its destructive agents plundered and robbed 50% of the ancestral lands of the Tamils in the North East of Sri Lanka.(Violation of UDHR articles – 17)

    1956 The “Sinhala Only” Act was passed in the Sri Lankan Parliament. This Act made Tamils second class citizens in the island. Tamils staged peaceful protests in Colombo and Gal Oya. 150 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 20 Women were raped; 3000 were made refugees and their properties were looted by Sinhala mobs.(Violation of UDHR article – 2, 3, 5, 12, 17 )

    In 1957, the “Banda Chelva” pact and in 1965 the “Dudley-Chelva” pact. These agreements were based on a quasi-federal system devolving certain powers to the Tamils in the North East province. These were the first of several agreements and pacts signed between Tamil leaders and Sinhala leaders to resolve the political turmoil in the country, that were unilaterally abrogated by Sri Lanka.

    1958 Anti Tamil riots in Sinhala areas. Massacre of Tamils, looting of their properties, setting fire to their houses. 25,000 Tamils were made refugees; 500 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 200 Women were raped and Tamil properties were looted or destroyed by Sinhala mobs.(Violation of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 5, 12, 17)

    1961 Tamil non-violent (Satyagraha) civil disobedience campaign in the North and East was disrupted by the security forces, protesters were beaten and arrested.(Violation of UDHR articles – 5, 9, 20)

    1964 The Pact (Srima-Shastri) to evacuate Tamil plantation workers of Indian origin was signed. They were living in the island for over 131 years. 650,000 Plantation Tamils became stateless persons.(Violation of UDHR articles – 4, 15, 23)

    1972 Equal education opportunities for Tamil students were denied. Standardisation on University admission was introduced.(Violation of UDHR article – 26)

  56. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka II

    1974 The Fourth International Tamil research Conference held on 10/01/1974 in Jaffna was disrupted by the Sri Lankan Police. 9 Tamils were brutally killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 20, 27)

    1977 In July, Tamil United Liberation Front-TULF, contested and won overwhelmingly at the Parliamentary election giving them a mandate to exercise the “Right to Self-determination” and establish Tamil Eelam in the North East. In 1983 August 8, Sri Lankan government enacts the 6th amendment to the constitution and rejected the right to self-determination of the Tamil people, the mandate voted by the Tamils in 1977 general election.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8, 10, 21)

    1979 July, Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) was introduced in Sri Lanka. This Act gives a free hand to the Security forces to arrest, detain, torture, rape, kill and dispose bodies with impunity. Arrested people could be detained for three months without being produced in courts.(Violations of UDHR articles – 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)

    1981 The Jaffna Public Library containing 95,000 volumes was completely destroyed in a fire set by a group of Police officers who went on a rampage in the Jaffna city on May 31, 1981. 95, 000 volumes of unrecoverable-invaluable books were burnt.(Violations of UDHR articles – 2, 21, 24, 27)

    1983 Since independence in 1948, more than 35 years of peaceful non-violent struggle by the Tamils protesting against Sinhala oppression, were suppressed by violent means by the Sri Lankan security forces, inflicting loss of many lives and much material damage to the Tamils.(Violations of UDHR articles – 3, 4, 5,9,13,20)

    1983 The Government masterminded anti-Tamil riots in July 83. More than 6,000 Tamils were killed by the Sinhalese in the South. Tamil houses and businesses were looted and destroyed. Tamils living in the South were sent in ships to the North and East by the government.

    250,000 Tamils were made refugees; 2,500 Tamils were burnt or hacked to death; 500 Women were raped; 53 Tamil political prisoners were brutally murdered in the maximum security Welikada prison on 25-27th July. Sinhala extremist groups and thugs, ruined the socio-economic and the political rights of the Tamil people. Anti-Tamil riots also in 1956, 1958, 1977, and 1981.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 17, 23, 24, 25, 26)

  57. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka III

    1984 – To date Tamils living in the North-East were arrested, tortured and killed. Women were raped, many disappeared. Tamil properties were looted or destroyed by the Sri Lankan security forces. Air Force bombers dropping Cluster bombs in residential areas and near IDPs camps causing severe loss and damage to Tamil people and their property.

    The Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA) and the Emergency Regulations (ER) adopted by the government are helped the security forces to carry out all sorts of human rights violations with impunity.(UDHR was completely violated)

    1990 – To date Economic embargo in Tamil areas. Food, medicine, electricity and other important items are denied to the Tamils.(Violations of UDHR articles – 22, 25, 26)

    1995 – On 15th November, the NGO Forum took place at Bentota Beach Hotel, in Bentota, in the South of Sri Lanka. Both foreign and local NGO representatives participated in this forum and this forum meeting was disrupted by anti-NGO demonstrators. The organisers of the NGO forum decided to shift the venue to the capital, Colombo. On 16th November, the NGO Forum re-convened in the morning at a conference hall in Ratmalana, police officers arrived to “request” the Forum to suspend its proceedings, claiming that the meeting was illegal! The meeting was dissolved and all attendees dispersed.(Violations of UDHR articles – 8, 13, 18, 19, 20)

    1997 – On 25th September, 38 NGOs serving in several parts of Batticaloa district, were ordered by Government of Sri Lanka to cease all their humanitarian operations. This immediately followed a government order banning NGOs from assisting people in the areas of Batticaloa.(Violations of UDHR articles – 8, 13, 18, 19, 20)

    1998 – the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances stated that,“Sri Lanka had the second highest number of disappearances in the world, ranking next to Iraq”.

    Also Sri Lanka was the only country that the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances had visited several times. So far no proper remedies had been found for these disappearances.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,4,5,7,9,10,11)

    2005 – with the aim of ensuring equal distribution of Tsunami aid to the worst affected North East, an agreement known as the Post Tsunami Operational Management Structure – PTOMS was signed between the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE. This was unilaterally abrogated by the government of Sri Lanka under the pretext of a Supreme Court judgement.(Violation of UDHR articles – 16, 25)

    At this time, over 85,000 Tamil people had been killed or “disappeared”; more than 12,500 Tamil women raped and killed; more than 2500 buildings of Tamils’ religious places of worship (Churches and Temples) destroyed in aerial bombings and artillery shelling and billions of rupees worth of material damage had been caused to the Tamils by the Sri Lankan government.

    As a result of well planned ethnic cleansing by the Sinhala State, nearly 500,000 Tamil people were internally displaced and more than 500,000 Tamils’ have sought political asylum in Europe and other countries.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 16, 16,17)

    2005 – 7th January, the UN Secretary General made a humanitarian visit to Sri Lanka to see the Tsunami affected areas. When Kofi Annan requested to visit the North East, the areas in the island most affected by the tsunami, the Sri Lankan authorities deliberately prevented him from making a humanitarian visit there.

    (Violation of UDHR articles – 13,25 & a serious violation of the United Nations Charter, Chapter XV Article 100.

  58. Tamil Human Rights Abuse in Sri Lanka IV

    2006 – Sri Lankan citizens cannot seek remedy from the UN Human Rights Committee – Even though Sri Lanka is signatory to the ICCPR, on 15 September 2006, the Supreme Court effectively ruled that Sri Lankan citizens cannot seek remedy from the UN Human Rights Committee regarding human rights violations. It declared that the accession to the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in 1997 does not bind Sri Lanka and has no legal effect within the island.– Decision of the Supreme Court 15 September 2006 – SC Spl (LA) No 182/99.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8, 10,19)

    2006 – Sri Lanka’s Air Force bombed a gathering of schoolgirls at Vallipunam on August 14, 2006, killing 56 schools girls and wounding 210 others.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3, 10,12,13,20,26)

    2006 – The India and Sri Lanka accord was signed in 1987 under the guise of settling the Tamil ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. Under this accord the merger of North Eastern province took place on 8 Sep.1988. But, after exactly 18 years, The Supreme Court delivered its political judgement on 16 October 2006, stating that the merger of these two provinces was invalid.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,9,10,13,21)

    2007 – Sri Lanka was ranked third most dangerous place for the media in the world, with many journalists having been killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,6,7,10,13,18,19)

    2008 – Sri Lanka withdrew from the Ceasefire Agreement-CFA between the government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE that was signed in February 2002.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,5,9,10,13,)

    2008 – According to the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, presently Sri Lanka rank as the country with the highest number of disappearances. The fate of 656 Tamils who ‘disappeared’ in 1996 was not yet known but Tamils continued to ‘disappear’ in North East. Many Tamil journalists, academics, parliamentarians, human rights activists, children and others in the North East were killed.(Violation of UDHR articles – 3,4,5,7,9,10,11)

    2008 – IIGEP quit Sri Lanka – President Rajapaksa had invited the International Independent Group of Eminent Persons – IIGEP to observe and ensure the transparency of investigations held by the Commission of Inquiries on the complaints of abductions, disappearances and other serious violations of human rights arising since 1st August 2005. Also, the IIGEP was to ensure that those inquiries were conducted in accordance with basic international norms and standards. On 22 April 2008, the IIGEP, quit Sri Lanka, citing government unwillingness to implement its recommendations to bring the probe up to international standards, lack of financial stability, government interference and slow process.(Violation of UDHR articles – 8,10)

    2009 – Sri Lanka government and their security forces committed War crimes and Genocide against the Tamil people. This has been well recorded by all international human rights organisations and the United Nations. Furthermore these serious violations have been documented and screened by the TV Channel 4, UK.(Violation of UDHR and other international conventions)

    2010 – The UN Secretary-General’s appointed panel submitted a report on War Crimes in Sri Lanka on 12 April 2001. This was subsequently transferred to the UN High commissioner for Human Rights and the President of the Human Rights Council on 13 September 2011. However no action was taken.

    Persistent violations of the UDHR and other international conventions continue unabated despite increasing international pressure on Sri Lanka.

  59. Dear Jim,

    As many other peace loving citizens of Sri Lanka , I did not expect anything more than this form your side . No wonder why your organization has earned the sobriquet “carrion fowls” among ordinary Sri Lankans .

    Sri Lanka fought a war against one of the world’s most ruthless terrorist outfit in the world . During the three decades that this terror group committed horrendous atrocities against people of Sri Lanka , your organization did nothing but trying to white wash the same terror group. Your selective “concerns” were always against the democratically elected government who had struggled to save its people against terrorism . It is only after we defeated the terror group that you have developed a sudden interest to investigate “war crimes” committed by “both” parties.

    It is clear that the escalating and continuation of violence and human sufferings in Sri Lanka and the world over is beneficial for your organization . However, Mr. Jim we have suffered enough and we do not need any more trouble in our country whether you like it or not. Please find some other troubled country to make your living.

    Finally, it is funny that you want us to write to the U.S. government requesting its involvement to the issue . Do you seriously believe that world is still considering the U.S. as a Human Rights Champion? Perhaps 2-3 decades ago , but not anymore , the whole world knows that the West led by the U.S, is now fighting one of the most dirtiest war in the human history . There are dangerous war criminals walk freely in the U.S. , some even honored with peace awards who should be brought into books before any Sri Lankan official.

    To be frank , it is not out of our great love for the government of Sri Lanka that large majority of Sri Lankans oppose to an international investigation over war crimes in our country . It is purely because of the extremely biased nature of parties , including Amnesty that push for the move makes us unite against it . The past and present behavior of your organization towards Sri Lanka , has given us sufficient conviction that you have no moral right to talk about human rights in our country.

    Amnesty does everything but promoting human rights in the world.

    Thank you .

    Nava J

  60. Velayutham wrote:

    Balachandran, another 12 old Tamil boy saw his whole family butchered by Sri Lanka Army.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    I saw similar , on DBS website

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (12) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.

    How anyone can be so cold hearted to kill a helpless child ?

    The child was in Sri Lanka Army custody.

    Sri Lanka Army proudly shows off the dead child pictures after Sri Lanka Army brutally killed the child

    http://www.nowpublic.com/world/balachandrans-dead-body-ltte-leader-prabakarans-little-son-photo-02

    I could not imagine what agony this small child went through before his murder

    This a cowardly act !!

    Do these people have children ?

  61. One child saw his father, mother, brother and two sisters blown to bits in front of his eyes and another child was murdered by Sri Lanka Army. This a kind gift to the Tamil nation from the Rajapaksa ,a “ZERO civilian casualties” guy. :(

    DBS wrote: His younger son Balachandran (11) was with some bodyguards near Nandhikkadal lagoon. After some bodyguards were killed the others surrendered. They were killed. The boy was taken to Prabakharan’s body and asked to identify the Father. Afterwards he was killed.

    http://dbsjeyaraj.com/dbsj/archives/3016

  62. More lies from Mad Mahinda Government !!

    Readers will find no big surprises after reading the final report of Sri Lanka’s Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

    It is very much what most people were expecting. A document that looks to the future, exonerates the military, does not touch on the question of accountability and includes some touchy-feely language about the country’s need to move forward and forget the mass murder of the innocent…

    Essentially, all civilian casualties were the result of people caught in the crossfire or were the LTTE’s fault.

    While the LTTE deliberately targeted civilians, it appears that Sri Lanka’s military -surprise, surprise – did not ?????… according to the LLRC report. That assertion goes against what most people seem to think, including the report produced by the United Nation’s Panel of Experts. In order to determine “questions of State responsibility,” the LLRC report goes on to note that an “international tribunal” would be unhelpful because there just is not enough evidence about what actually happened during the final phase of the conflict. Essentially, it would be nearly impossible to “re-create” what actually occurred in a court of law. The Commission found that it was just too challenging to give even an estimate of civilian casualties during the end of the war.

    The Commission also found it difficult to determine what happened regarding the shelling of hospitals. Although, it is clear to the Commission that Sri Lankan military personnel never intentionally went after civilians in the No Fire Zones(NFZs) either.

    The report talks about remuneration for victims/survivors, especially civilians. Again, this is not a big surprise either. Most people thought that the LLRC Report would recommend that the government “throw some money” at a few people.

    Although, the responsible entity for doing so, the Rehabilitation of Persons, Properties and Industries Authority (REPPIA) is currently suffering from a lack of funds so it is uncertain how that will play out in the years to come.

    The Commission’s analysis of the current challenges facing Sri Lanka appears to be slightly more realistic than the rest of the report. Land issues, minority rights and the possibility that militarization in the North might be a bit too much are all mentioned.

    So, Sri Lankans and the international community must be patient, of course. Wait, wait, wait—there is always something to wait for in the pursuit of accountability in Sri Lanka. And of course the Commission has found that the most responsible way to approach accountability and the pursuit of national reconciliation would be to establish some additional “independent” bodies to help achieve this.

    There is some fluffy prose in LLRC but not offering any political solution to address the long-term grievances of the Tamil people.

    LLRC is obviously a weak report, and, in some ways, undoubtedly weaker than what even the most pessimistic people were expecting.

  63. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story

    I’m a Canadian citizen. I went to Sri Lanka in 2005 to get married. My wife was pregnant, so I decided to stay there for a while. The terrorist investigation division came to my house, after two years, in 2007. They wanted to check some items–phones or mobile phones–I had imported from Singapore.

    They checked the mobile phones and then they asked for $25,000 as ransom. I refused. At that time my wife brought out my Canadian passport and told them that I was a Canadian citizen who had come there to get married. She told them that we had a kid and that she was four months’ pregnant with our second child.

    They said they just had to get a statement and would release me in 15 minutes. They were not civil and didn’t show any ID, so I refused to give them money. I told them that I didn’t have that kind of money, anyway, to give. Then they blindfolded and handcuffed me and took me to an office somewhere in the city of Colombo, near the harbour. It was an illegal detention centre, just an old building where they keep suspects or detainees. There were about 50 to 60 people. They handcuffed me to the table 24/7. It was an office. I was always kept handcuffed there. The other detainees were kept in a small cell downstairs.

    They said that if I could give them money or confess that I was a LTTE member, they would release me. I said that I needed a lawyer, or at least I wanted to see someone from the Canadian embassy. So after about one week, someone from the Canadian embassy came to see me, and even when I talked to the embassy official, an intelligence officer was right beside me. They didn’t want to discuss anything about the case. I didn’t know what the case was all about.

    The Canadian embassy official suggested some lawyers’ names, but there was no lawyer and no court. They didn’t take me to court. I was in detention for one year, just for an inquiry. And the defence secretary, the one who signed the order for me to be detained under the emergency regulation, signed it every three months. I was just kept in that building for one year. During that period, I was handcuffed in the daytime, and at night I slept over the table or downstairs, down on the floor. When they arrested me, they first punched me, and then later on, they didn’t do anything. After about a week, they again said that I had to write a confession.

    They said that I had to confess that I was an LTTE member from Canada. They said that they knew there were a lot of LTTE people, Tamils, in Canada and that the Canadian government was helping the LTTE. They told me to say all of that and to write a confession in my native language of Tamil and sign it, and that they would then take it to court and release me. I told them that I was not going to do that.

    After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,“Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.” They kept on assaulting me for about 10 minutes and then left. Then the next day, the ICRC came in, and I complained to the ICRC about it. I was handcuffed and pulled and further beaten up. They told me that they were going to punish me and send me to a detention camp in Boossa in southern Sri Lanka

  64. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story II

    While I was in the TID headquarters office, people were routinely tortured. That was normal. You had to go through that. They didn’t torture me, I guess, to that extent, because the ICRC and the Canadian embassy used to visit me. But what they did do was mentally…. They chained me, and if I wanted to go to the toilet, they would say no. I was diabetic and wanted my medication, but they said that they could not give it to me. Finally, the Canadian embassy managed to give me some metformin and check my blood sugar, which was around 15.5 or something. I was very drowsy.

    They didn’t understand. They kept on doing this for a very long time. After about six or seven months, they said that if I did not sign the confession, if I did not agree with it, they would send me to Boossa, the worst detention centre in southern Sri Lanka. So I was sent there. They put me in a small cell in an old building, built I think about a hundred years ago. It was a small cell with no lights and no toilets

    They would give me an hour just to wash my face, or whatever, but if I wanted to go to the toilet in-between, they just gave me a shopping bag and a bottle to urinate into. I had to go to the toilet in a shopping bag. When they would take me for questioning, it was in an open area. I would see people being tortured. They tie them upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them.

    It happens every single day. Women are sexually abused and beaten. They don’t give you a chair; you have to kneel down and wait there. That’s the way they question you. It goes on and on. Then finally the Canadian embassy came and I said I couldn’t stay there, that I had to go back to Colombo, that they had to do something. They said they couldn’t get involved because it was domestic law. They could give consular service, but could not do much. I understood that situation.

    But then I was taken again to Colombo and told that they were going to arrest my wife. My daughter was a year old, a Canadian citizen. My wife was five months’ pregnant, so they wanted to bring my wife. In the meantime, my [Inaudible--Editor] was in custody at the Colombo office. My wife and kids were under house arrest for one week. Basically they could not leave the house. There were two police officers guarding the house. My brother would do the groceries and just throw them over the wall. There was no communication, all the phones were taken.

  65. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story III

    They were under house arrest for two weeks. They arrested me under the emergency regulations. Under the emergency regulations, after three months they have to produce me in court. But they never produced me in court. There was no judge, nothing at all for one year.

    After I came from Boossa to the Colombo court house, they said they were going to rape my wife and kill my pregnant wife’s child, that he’s a Tiger too, so they might as well kill all of them. Under emergency regulations, they can arrest anyone and keep them for one or two years. I said I would write any confession they wanted. I said I needed a lawyer, but I didn’t get a lawyer, nothing at all. He had his own notes. I had to write my confession in Tamil, sign it, date it, and give it back. They said once I gave it I would be released. So they got the confession, produced it in the high court, and filed charges against me. My phone had a GPS and they said that GPS was banned in Sri Lanka. I didn’t know; I never saw the GPS. I saw the phone, but the phone had a GPS device. I didn’t know what they were saying. I never saw them produce any legal documents at all. Once I signed the confession, they took me back again to Boossa detention centre and kept me there. That is the main reason I want to share this.

    The detainees were continually tortured. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. We had only one hour when we could go to the toilet, or wash our face, or whatever. Basically, they wanted a confession from me. I forgot to tell you that I was in the TID headquarters. Mr. Nord, the special adviser from the United Nations, visited us. I have that report here. He visited us and he wanted to talk to the detainees, but they kept me up there in the office. They didn’t want me to talk with him because I can speak the language. I can speak all three languages, and I would be speaking them in English. I saw him just passing by, but they didn’t allow me to talk to him.

    After he visited my detention centre, he gave a report. It’s all there, what he thought about it: the gasoline, chili powder, and iron pipes and wooden posts to hit you. It went on and on continuously. Some of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. There were no charges laid against them, so they’re still there. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison, so anyone can go and see them. They’re still in the Sri Lankan prison. I have their names. They’re still there, but because of the confessions they wrote, the judge looked at the confessions and said,“You are guilty”. The judge gave them five years or ten years. They are doing their sentences right now.

  66. Tamil man, Roy Samathanam Sri Lanka torture victim story IV

    One Mr. Tissainayagam was with me; he’s a journalist too. He was in the same detention centre. Now he’s in the U.S. That is the situation. Different groups came and inquired of me. It might have been the National Intelligence Bureau, military intelligence, or the Karuna group, the pro-government LTTE. They came from the LTTE; now it’s the Karuna group. They just came and talked to me for five minutes. There are different intelligence organizations and they come in and just get information and go.

    After that day, they remanded me to the Welikada prison, the main prison in Sri Lanka, and put me in with other convicts, not the LTTE, because there’s a different building for LTTE suspects only.

    They put me in with other prisoners, Sinhalese prisoners. I got continuous abuse from them and from the guards who were saying,“You are Canadian…”. They beat me up and didn’t give me water to bathe and things like that. I was going through hell. Then finally I got fed up and asked what the charges were. I told my lawyer,“You have to do something”. The lawyer talked to the attorney general’s department. The charges were that I had plotted to kill the army commander of Sri Lanka, Sarath Fonseka, had been following VIP ministers, and was giving information to the LTTE. A lot of charges were framed against me. But finally the attorney general’s department said, okay, but they could not just release me like that, but told me to just plead guilty for having a GPS and that they would make a deal with the attorney general. They told my lawyer to do that.

    So finally I pleaded guilty in high court to having a GPS. I got a fine of five lakhs and the judge told me I was free to go. So there was a five-lakhs fine for having a GPS, and they dropped all the charges about killing the general and following all the ministers and everything. Everything was done, so I was freed.

  67. What a shame!!

    Torture in Sri Lanka custody is endemic trough out the island.

    Roy Samathanam, who was tortured Sri Lanka custody said

    The torture went on and on continuously. Sri Lanka prison guards tie the prisoners upside down and put gasoline in a shopping bag and tie it around them. They would just keep them up there, tied, with their head down this way, and would keep beating them. After 8:30 or 9:00 p.m., the Sri Lanka officers were drunk. They would come in and randomly pick up people, take them to the hall, tie them up or handcuff them, this way, with their legs in different positions and keep them there for hours, or put them inside a bucket of water and just keep them there. They didn’t allow you to sleep; there was no sleeping. They just kept me in the same cell, with no toilets, nothing. There were 3 toilets for 280 inmates. The female prisoners who had been sexually assaulted and beaten up are still in prison. In Sri Lanka many of the detainees who were there in the detention centre and in prison had been there for 10 years without any charges. After about six months, they came during the night, about 15 officers from the terrorist investigation division and army intelligence. They started to beat me up. They said,” Let’s kill the Canadian Tiger.”

    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6472#comments

  68. Every one of the commissions or investigations and inquiries established by the Sri Lankan government to examine human rights violations or establish what happened around particular incidents did not result in justice for any of the victims.

    There was nothing there. :(

    The legal process was just not followed through in Sri Lanka.

  69. No more excuses, it is time to act
    http://www.tamilguardian.com/article.asp?articleid=4107
    Now that Sri Lanka’s farcical attempt at accountability – the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report – has finally been published, there can be no more excuses. The LLRC has for too long been the international community’s fig leaf, used by governments across the world, including the US and the UK, to stall calls for accountability and a credible investigation into allegations of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide. The commission’s inquiry, its findings and its recommendations serve only to further vindicate the overwhelming justification for an independent, international investigation. For the victims, justice is well overdue. The time to act is now.

    The LLRC is the by-product of sustained international pressure following the horrific findings of the UN expert panel, and Sri Lanka’s desperation to stave off any meaningful investigation and subsequent discovery of truth. For governments across the world, it has been convenient to support Sri Lanka’s assertion that the LLRC would answer the serious allegations made by the UN expert panel. However, it should come as no surprise that the LLRC report falls far short of this. The international community’s willingness to play along with Sri Lanka’s theatrics has been dismaying and deplorable. It has revealed a shameful disregard for the much preached about doctrine of universal human rights and the proclamation of ‘never again’.

    Making a mockery of any serious allegations, the words ‘war crimes’ only feature twice in the entire LLRC report. Never in the main body of the text, ‘war crimes’ only crop up during the citation of other reports by human rights organisations, one on Sri Lanka and the other on Israel. Undoubtedly, the emergence of compelling and damning evidence of atrocities, forced the commission to concede that some violations of human rights did take place. It would have simply been untenable to tow the Sri Lankan government’s long held, official line of zero civilian deaths and maintain even the pretence of credibility. Beyond this meagre admission however, the report dismisses any notion of a ‘systematic’, ‘persecution’ of Tamil civilians by Sri Lanka’s armed forces and the ‘deliberate’ targeting of civilian establishments – key assertions made by the UN expert panel – as untruths.

    Criminal responsibility for atrocities is conveniently deflected from those in power. Ignoring the testimonies of a significant number of witnesses that identify a clear chain of command, and thereby command responsibility to crimes, the report urges the prosecution of individual soldiers if found guilty. Even if such witness testimony is negated, the scale of civilian deaths in Sri Lanka could not have taken place without the knowledge of the most senior military officials. International law is uncompromising in this regard – responsibility for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide goes to the very top. In the case of Sri Lanka, the defence secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, the then head of the army, General Sarath Fonseka, and the commander in chief – the president – Mahinda Rajapaksa are principally answerable.

    TNA wants accountability mechanism for Sri Lanka
    http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/article2729067.ece
    Calling upon the international community to establish a “mechanism for accountability” to bring to book the perpetrators of war crimes during the last stages of the Eelam War that ended in May 2009, the Tamil National Alliance on Monday said the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability”.

  70. Glaringly obvious truth with the lawyers and judges in Sri Lanka(SL) is that even when they know the law they do not seem to know justice. Justice requires wisdom.

    A priveleged class, created not on merit but on unearned legal privilege, controls the writing of rules and how they are applied in SL.

    Lawyers with expertise in international law know with certainty that SL is an illegal country- like the former Southern Rhodesia of Ian Smith- declaring itself as a republic in 1972, making Tamil Eelam(TE) as its colony, at a period of decolonisation of coutries, following a UN resolution that all the colonies should be handed over to the native owners.

    Internal justice has become an impossibility in most of the former and present colonies, compelling affected citizens to seek external justice.

    During the third week of October 2011, the 9th US Court of Appeal in San Francisco, under a US law known as the Alien Tort Statute, decided to proceed with a lawsuit filed on behalf of 10,000 of present and former residents of the South Pacific island of Bougainhville, where a late 1980s uprising led to the use of military force and many deaths.

    In this litigation, non US residents have filed a lawsuit against a non US company based in Britain, without even an office in the US.

    Rio Tinto is accused of racial discrimination, crimes against humanity and covering up complicity in war crimes and genocide.

    The US appeal court Judge Mary Schroeder said “The complainant alleges purposeful conduct undertaken by Rio Tinto with the intent to assist in the commission of violence, injury and death, to the degree necessary to keep its mine open”.

    A lawsuit against the GOSL and its allies is imminent in the US courts, alleging the military, the GOSL and its allies of violence, injury and death of Tamils, with the intent to keep TE as its colony.

  71. LLRC was constituted with predominantly Sinhala, and the poignant admissions and clear recommendations of several grievances of the minority communities is very significant. I am sure that the Sinhala Chauvinists would go into overdrive to counter this fresh impediment to their unabated progress. The question is, whether the MR Regime has the back bone to sincerely to sincerely implement the recommendations; I very much doubt it! :(

  72. As the unprecedented Sri Lankan experience has demonstrated, where the non state armed group has no intention whatsoever of agreeing to a negotiated declaration of such Zones providing for civilian protection and once unilaterally declared by the State, utilize them to advance its combat strategy and operations (for example, using civilians within the Zone as human shields), the State and Field Commanders are faced with the dilemma of protecting civilians on the one hand and neutralizing the enemy fire power emanating from within the NFZ, on the other.

    The Sri Lankan experience has in fact given rise to a debate as to whether, by unilateral declaration of a No Fire Zone, the Government unwittingly provided the LTTE an opportunity to consolidate itself amongst the civilian enclave for strategic purposes.

  73. A senior public official107 who served in Kilinochchi during 2008/2009:

    “one day at about 1 o’clock there was shelling although she could not identify by whom the shelling was – but about 13 people had been injured and about 30 shells had fallen in the area……Even though we have bunkers, sometimes we could not move to the bunkers as suddenly both sides start fighting. The people got caught in the middle. This is the problem that the people faced. All the time the people were with the LTTE they were not allowed to move.

    When the safe zones were declared, the LTTE also went to that area – how can you say that it is a safe zone – the LTTE mixed with the people. Even in Puthukudiyirippu office when we held meetings the LTTE were also there with my staff. Whoever tried to escape, the LTTE would open fire. The people in the uncleared area moved with the LTTE as the Army commenced operations and advanced from Mannar.

    When the confrontationadvanced to one area, the people moved to another area…….when fighting comes to that area they move to another area. Finally they came to Puthumatthalan.”

  74. Tamil Women’s Insecurity in the North and East: Gender-based violence

    Tamil Women in Sri Lanka’s predominantly Tamil-speaking north and east are facing a desperate lack of security in the aftermath of the long civil war. Today many still live in fear of violence from various sources.

    Those who fall victim to it have little means of redress. Women’s economic security is precarious, and their physical mobility is limited. The heavily militarised and centralised control of the north and east – with almost exclusively male, Sinhalese security forces – raises particular problems for women there in terms of their safety, sense of security and ability to access assistance. They have little control over their lives and no reliable institutions to turn to. The government has mostly dismissed women’s security issues and exacerbated fears, especially in the north and east. The international community has failed to appreciate and respond effectively to the challenges faced by women and girls in the former war zone.

    Tamil women and girls vulnerable at multiple levels. In the Vanni in particular, their housing is inadequate, and they have limited means of transportation and employment opportunities. Many do not have sufficient funds to feed their families, let alone to care for those who were maimed or disabled in the war. The continuing search for the missing and the struggle to maintain relations with the detained are further strains.

    Tamil women have been forced into prostitution or coercive sexual relationships. Some have also been trafficked within the country and abroad. Pregnancies among teenagers have increased. Fear of abuse has further restricted women’s movement and impinged on education and employment opportunities. The fact that women must rely on the military for everyday needs not only puts them at greater risk of gender-based violence, but also prevents them from building their own capacity within communities. The island-wide spate of attacks on women by individuals labelled “grease yakas (devils)”, which reached the north and east in August and into September 2011, and the lack of serious response by the security forces (except to brutally crack-down on protesters across the north and east, and especially in Jaffna), exposed the near-complete collapse of trust in law enforcement.

    Instead of recognising these vulnerabilities and taking steps to protect women and girls, the government has largely ignored them. The heavily militarised and centralised systems of control in the north and east exclude most residents, but especially women from decisions that affect their security. While there are some female civilian officials and some programs nominally directed at women, all activities occur within a male, Sinhalese, military structure. The government has constrained access for international humanitarian organisations and even more so for local civil society. The vision of security the government has pursued is a masculine, militarised one. Human security is lacking.

    The current situation in the north and east comes in the wake of serious accusations of sexual violence by the military against Tamil women at the end of the war and in the months thereafter. There is credible evidence to support some of these accusations. Yet cultural stigma, decades of impunity, and the government’s refusal to allow any independent investigation of the end of the war and its aftermath make it impossible to determine the full extent of misconduct. In a well-known rape case in the north in June 2010, criminal prosecution has been pending for eighteen months against four soldiers

    http://transcurrents.com/news-views/archives/6843

  75. Everyone knows who did this..
    It is true that thousands of people including infants, children, elderly & women suffered a very painful death. It is also true that more than 300,000 IDPs were kept as prisoners surrounded by barbed wire fence. If anyone gives false statement saying that 300,000 people are kept in prison surrounded by barbed wire fence and if anyone dreamt that innocent civilians died in Vanni and someone forecasts that Tamils youths and women are gone missing then there would a need for a Commission.
    It is true fact that 300,000 IDPs were kept in prison surrounded by barbed wire fence. Everyone knows who did this. Under the above circumstance the LLRC is not going to give us anything new and the LLRC is not going to find out the missing or dead. The LLRC failed in the all above aspects and also failed in mentioning a political solution the much needed for reconciliation. It seems nothing is going to happen. The Government of Sri Lanka will declare to the world that it has released the LLRC Report and give false promises that those responsible for any crime will be punished.
    As for the Commissioners they will get god reward, good pay and in future fame for being a commissioner in the LLRC. Tamils are not at all benefited by the report. “It is clear that justice for conflict-related abuses is not going to happen within Sri Lanka’s domestic institutions. The government has been playing for time by appointing the LLRC. That time has now run out,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch.
    The Tamil speaking people of the northeast of Sri Lanka lost their trust and confidence in this terror regime because of its continuing terror tactics against the Tamil people. The UN peace keeping force should be deployed in northeast to protect the Tamil speaking people from further atrocities. Under this regime reconciliation and devolution of power will virtually be impossible.
    Democracy is a curse for Sri-Lanka..
    Democracy is a curse for Sri-Lanka. The collective will of the majority Sinhala’s people which always detrimental to the aspirations of Tamils cannot be imposed on the minority people in the name of democracy. The Sinhala masses are not prepared enough to practice the true meaning of democracy. For example in the current regime, even though is doing irreparable damage to the country, it is very popular among the Sinhala masses just because it unleashed maximum havoc and mayhem on Tamil people since the so-called independence.
    Sri Lankan regime always takes the weapon, “West vs. Rest” to defend them in the HRC and the UN.

  76. As the unprecedented Sri Lankan experience has demonstrated, where the non state armed group has no intention whatsoever of agreeing to a negotiated declaration of such Zones providing for civilian protection and once unilaterally declared by the State, utilize them to advance its combat strategy and operations (for example, using civilians within the Zone as human shields), the State and Field Commanders are faced with the dilemma of protecting civilians on the one hand and neutralizing the enemy fire power emanating from within the NFZ, on the other.

    The Sri Lankan experience has in fact given rise to a debate as to whether, by unilateral declaration of a No Fire Zone, the Government unwittingly provided the LTTE an opportunity to consolidate itself amongst the civilian enclave for strategic purposes.

  77. A senior public official107 who served in Kilinochchi during 2008/2009:

    “one day at about 1 o’clock there was shelling although she could not identify by whom the shelling was – but about 13 people had been injured and about 30 shells had fallen in the area……Even though we have bunkers, sometimes we could not move to the bunkers as suddenly both sides start fighting. The people got caught in the middle. This is the problem that the people faced. All the time the people were with the LTTE they were not allowed to move.

    When the safe zones were declared, the LTTE also went to that area – how can you say that it is a safe zone – the LTTE mixed with the people. Even in Puthukudiyirippu office when we held meetings the LTTE were also there with my staff. Whoever tried to escape, the LTTE would open fire. The people in the uncleared area moved with the LTTE as the Army commenced operations and advanced from Mannar.

    When the confrontationadvanced to one area, the people moved to another area…….when fighting comes to that area they move to another area. Finally they came to Puthumatthalan.”

  78. I guess the requirement from the international community is for an independent investigation. LLRC was definitely not independent. They were under the control of GOSL. So it is natural for LLRC to say there is no evidence to prove the allegations. When they are biased the last thing if at all they will do is to make any effort in finding evidence.

    So if GOSL wants to clear themselves of the allegations and if they strongly believe that the allegations are false, they should not have any hesitations in letting the independent investigations happen.

    But so far GOSL has been resisting investigations.. that makes the suspisions grow stronger even for a neutral – unbiased person.

  79. Everyone knows who did this..
    It is true that thousands of people including infants, children, elderly & women suffered a very painful death. It is also true that more than 300,000 IDPs were kept as prisoners surrounded by barbed wire fence. If anyone gives false statement saying that 300,000 people are kept in prison surrounded by barbed wire fence and if anyone dreamt that innocent civilians died in Vanni and someone forecasts that Tamils youths and women are gone missing then there would a need for a Commission.
    It is true fact that 300,000 IDPs were kept in prison surrounded by barbed wire fence. Everyone knows who did this. Under the above circumstance the LLRC is not going to give us anything new and the LLRC is not going to find out the missing or dead. The LLRC failed in the all above aspects and also failed in mentioning a political solution the much needed for reconciliation. It seems nothing is going to happen. The Government of Sri Lanka will declare to the world that it has released the LLRC Report and give false promises that those responsible for any crime will be punished.
    As for the Commissioners they will get god reward, good pay and in future fame for being a commissioner in the LLRC. Tamils are not at all benefited by the report. “It is clear that justice for conflict-related abuses is not going to happen within Sri Lanka’s domestic institutions. The government has been playing for time by appointing the LLRC. That time has now run out,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch.
    The Tamil speaking people of the northeast of Sri Lanka lost their trust and confidence in this terror regime because of its continuing terror tactics against the Tamil people. The UN peace keeping force should be deployed in northeast to protect the Tamil speaking people from further atrocities. Under this regime reconciliation and devolution of power will virtually be impossible.
    Democracy is a curse for Sri-Lanka..
    Democracy is a curse for Sri-Lanka. The collective will of the majority Sinhala’s people which always detrimental to the aspirations of Tamils cannot be imposed on the minority people in the name of democracy. The Sinhala masses are not prepared enough to practice the true meaning of democracy. For example in the current regime, even though is doing irreparable damage to the country, it is very popular among the Sinhala masses just because it unleashed maximum havoc and mayhem on Tamil people since the so-called independence.
    Sri Lankan regime always takes the weapon, “West vs. Rest” to defend them in the HRC and the UN.

  80. Under the Rajapakse’s command, Sri Lanka army committed atrocities on a large scale against helpless women, men, children which demonstrates systematicity in the final stages of war.

    The Rajapakse Bros. therefore indeed have command responsibility for war crimes in the last phase of the war and should be sent to the Hague.

    According Buddhist beliefs, there is a thing called – karma, so their time to answer for the mass murder of the innocent people will surely come!

  81. I guess the requirement from the international community is for an independent investigation. LLRC was definitely not independent. They were under the control of GOSL. So it is natural for LLRC to say there is no evidence to prove the allegations. When they are biased the last thing if at all they will do is to make any effort in finding evidence.

    So if GOSL wants to clear themselves of the allegations and if they strongly believe that the allegations are false, they should not have any hesitations in letting the independent investigations happen.

    But so far GOSL has been resisting investigations.. that makes the suspisions grow stronger even for a neutral – unbiased person.

  82. SL intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed through deportation from India.
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  83. LLRC is a joke !!

    The LLRC is " La La Land " where Sri Lanka Army Army saved 300,000 Tamils,killed only zero civilians,massacared no body, abducted none,made to disappear ‘nil’,raped not a single women,but only did a humanitarian rescue operation and saved the Tamils from the clutches of terrorists.

    The story is nice but no one is buying that, after all the real stories coming out in the public, one by one.The latest one was from an army high ranking official spilling the beans to the world.

    Let us see the real facts & observations of unbiased analysts of repute.
    Majority of the world now insist that the allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Sri Lanka government forces needed to be fully investigated.

    The U.N. Panel of Experts which investigated the last stages of the war had concluded that the Sri Lanka government include deliberately underestimating civilian numbers in the Vanni in order to deprive them of food and medical supplies, deliberately or recklessly endangering the lives of civilians in No-Fire Zones, targeting civilian objects including hospitals, and executing or causing the disappearance of those who had surrendered.

    “The LLRC concludes that, on these issues, the government is not responsible. Instead, it shifts blame onto individual soldiers and surmises that any violations that may have been committed were merely isolated incidents. For example, large numbers of disappearances that resulted from the surrender of unarmed persons to government forces have been cynically dismissed as isolated incidents perpetrated ‘by a few’.

    The LLRC unjustifiably rules out the possibility that these violations were systematic.

    This is why US wants another report from Sri Lanka !!!!

  84. Though not without flaws and lacuna, the long awaited LLRC report does not disappoint, and reaches high standards, ranking with the best reports emanating over the decades from official and semi-official/autonomous Sri Lankan commissions, reviews and probes. It is a serious, thoughtful, carefully written and constructed text, striking in its fair-mindedness and balance. It deserves constructive engagement with, by all concerned Sri Lankan citizens and those in the world community who are concerned about and with Sri Lanka.

    Let us first dispense with the flaws and gaps, of which there are chiefly two. Firstly, the Report echoes the conventional wisdom, as does the Norwegian (NORAD) post-mortem, that the CFA was the result and in the context of the military weakness of the Sri Lankan state. This is factually incorrect since it ignores the chronology of events, in which the deadly LRP missions which were taking down the Tiger command structure, followed and not preceded the disastrous Agni Kheela operation and the devastating raid on Katunayake airport. Thus the lopsided character of the CFA which heavily favoured the LTTE did not reflect the real balance of forces and was not inevitable. Secondly, the LLRC Report draws a veil of silence over the even more lopsided post-tsunami relief mechanism, the PTOMS, which was negotiated at the tail end of the Chandrika presidency and was frozen in its dangerous middle tier, by the Supreme Court, responding to a petition by the JVP. These errors and omissions should not, however, detract from the essentials merit of the Report.

    The Report is Janus-faced in the best, original sense of the term. It looks back at the war and the context of the conflict and provides a perspective of the kind of society we need. It constitutes the only road map so far, to a durable peace and a better future. It does not stop at a vision, sometimes more implicit than explicit, but pinpoints wrongs and shortcomings that require rectification while listing reforms that cry out for urgent implementation.

    Responses to the LLRC report have been of two sorts. One is that it is basically laudable and balanced, containing recommendations which should be promptly acted upon. This response then subdivides between those who are hopeful of action and others who are pessimistic or cynical. The second response is that the LLRC report is far from satisfactory, and is a whitewash or to change the metaphor, a sweeping under the carpet of war crimes and accountability issues.

    To my mind the first response —with its optimistic and pessimistic subsets— constitutes a reasonable reaction, while the second does not. I say this because those who dismiss the report as His Master’s Voice make the fundamental mistake of being teleological in their approach. Having concluded a priori, that the Sri Lankan state and armed forces were guilty of war crimes and/or crimes against humanity, they fault the LLRC Report for not having arrived at the same conclusion, and dismiss it out of hand, echoing calls for an international inquiry.

    These critics overlook or fail to undertake at least five basic tasks. They fail to grapple or even make reference to the rigorous reconstruction and argumentation that leads the Report to conclude that despite episodic crimes, civilian casualties were not, for the most part, intentional. They ignore the fact that this finding is the same as that which was arrived at by at least two impeccably non-state, independent sources, the oldest civil society think tank in Sri Lanka, the Marga Institute and its respected founder and outstanding liberal thinker Godfrey Gunatilleke, as well as a joint commission of three private sector business confederations. They fail to examine and disprove the extensive and solid argument on international humanitarian law in the LLRC report. They disregard the listing of specific cases, based on testimony, which require independent investigation. They ignore the chapter on Human rights, which, unlike that on international humanitarian law, is quite critical of the status quo.

    The Report also cuts like a surgeon’s knife through the old questions as to what the grievances of the Tamil community are, which of them are genuine and legitimate and how they differ from the grievances of the Sinhala community. This is done in excellent segments entitled ‘Grievances of the Tamil Community’ ‘The Historical Background relating to Majority-Minority relationships in Sri Lanka’ and ‘The Different Phases in the Narrative of Tamil Grievances’ (pp291-294, 369-370).

    Perhaps the single most important contribution of the LLRC Report is its clear and unambiguous identification of the causes of the Sri Lankan conflict and crisis, the resolution of which remains the central challenge before the country. The LLRC has, in short, undertaken a diagnosis and provided a prescription.

    "The Commission takes the view that the root cause of the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka lies in the failure of successive Governments to address the genuine grievances of the Tamil people. The country may not have been confronted with a violent separatist agenda, if the political consensus at the time of independence had been sustained and if policies had been implemented to build up and strengthen the confidence of the minorities around the system which had gained a reasonable measure of acceptance. A political solution is imperative to address the causes of the conflict…" (p 291, articles 8.150, 8.151)

    The LLRC Report justifies its most ambitious claim, which is to provide a post-war programme and pathway.

    "… To this end, the success of ending armed conflict must be invested in an all-inclusive political process of dialogue and accommodation so that the conflict by other means will not continue… However, if these expectations were to become a reality in the form of a multi-ethnic nation at peace with itself in a democratic Sri Lanka, the Government and all political leaders must manifest political will and sincerity of purpose to take the necessary decisions to ensure the good-faith implementation of the Commission’s recommendations… While not being an exhaustive agenda to address, let alone cure, all ills of post conflict Sri Lanka, the recommendations of the Commission could nevertheless constitute a framework for action by all stakeholders, in particular the Government, political parties and community leaders. This framework would go a long way in constructing a platform for consolidating post-conflict peace and security as well as amity and cooperation within and between the diverse communities in Sri Lanka." (Preamble, pp.1-2)

    Overall, perhaps the most vital contribution of the Report is its potential to re-balance the Sri Lankan policy (and political) discourse, re-constituting a tragically vacated middle ground or centre space. Indeed, the LLRC report is that rarity: a welcome example of an enlightened Middle Path, at a time of strident affirmations of dogmatic fundamental positions.

  85. “6,000 of us crossed from Kilinochchi to Vavuniya117. There was severe shelling but we went in search of the Army – we went towards the Army, the Army was there on the way – it was they who took us to the Camp. The Army helped us.”

  86. “…by the 23rd April 2009 the Army had entered Puthumatthalan and Ampalavanapokkanai area. It may be on 23rd of 24th morning I suppose, the Army came in there and opened fire and took us from the bunkers safely and took us to safe areas. On 25th along with many other families we were taken to Cheddikulam…”

  87. “we moved through the main road, there was a bund at the main road also but that bund was demolished. There was Army on both sides of the road and Army advised us to take the route on the road and not to get down because of the mines. As we proceeded taking this route the Army was there and they provided us water and meals”

  88. ‘as we passed Iranapalai and went to Mathalan area there was sea on one side and the lagoon on the other…it was shallow water and we just managed to go….at one point we could not proceed at all ….we got stuck there so we went to Pokkanai temple and the Army came from both sides, the LTTE had withdrawn from the area and the Army took us to safety, it was neck deep water and the Army held us by our hands and took us.’

  89. SL intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed through deportation from India.
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  90. SL intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed through deportation from India.
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  91. The report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission was presented to parliament on Friday, and in the view of the present columnist, the most important part of that report is on pages 40 to 48. So far, all we have been hearing are the allegations made against Sri Lanka in reports compiled overseas. There is an international lynch mob baying for Sri Lankan blood and it is such prejudiced sources that have been telling us what international laws relating to armed conflict apply to the Sri Lankan case.

    In the two and a half years after the end of the war, no counter had been made by Sri Lanka to these allegations of having broken international laws. The LLRC report cannot be considered a counter to those allegations, but at least there is a statement of how an independent body of Sri Lankan legal experts would see the applicability of the international law of armed conflict and international humanitarian law to the Sri Lankan context. The international report that dealt most comprehensively with the legal aspects of the Sri Lankan case was the UN Secretary General’s advisory panel report of April 2011. According to the position stated in that report, Sri Lanka basically stands condemned already. The position taken by Ban Ki-moon’s panelists can be summarized as follows.

    * Sri Lanka has signed only the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and not its Additional Protocol II which deals with internal conflicts. Therefore Sri Lanka is not covered by Additional Protocol II.

    * What is applicable to the Sri Lankan case is only Common Article 3 (Common in the sense of being common to all four of the Geneva Conventions) which deals with internal conflicts and broadly stipulates that those taking no active part in the hostilities should be treated humanely.

    * Attacks may be directed only at combatants and not at civilians, the latter being defined as those who are not members of an armed group taking part in the conflict. There is an ‘unconditional and absolute prohibition’ on the targeting of civilians. This absolute immunity is available to a population that is ‘predominantly civilian’ which means that even if there are individuals who are combatants among the population, that does not deprive the said population of its civilian character.

    * While attacks on civilians have to be ‘willful’ to become a crime, and the accused has to deliberately target and kill civilians, this element of a willful attack will also apply to an attack that is reckless with regard to its possible impact on civilians.

    * If it is argued that the army did not target civilians deliberately, and targeted only the LTTE, an attack still remains unlawful if it hits a lawful military object and a civilian object at the same time.

    This means that you cannot fire back at terrorists who shoot at the army from among civilians.

    What was stated in the Ban panel report was undoubtedly the lunatic fringe of the law of armed conflict. With laws such as the above, no country on earth would be able to combat terrorism. The LLRC started off by echoing the views expressed in the ICRC compendium of Customary International Humanitarian Law. A key observation that the ICRC makes is that Additional Protocol II of the Geneva Conventions which deals with internal conflicts has not defined the terms ‘civilian’ and ‘combatant’ in a satisfactory manner and that all subsequent international treaties have also not defined these two terms.

    The Ban Ki-moon panel report stressed as we saw above that if there is a doubt whether a person is a civilian, he will be considered a civilian. But this is not accepted by key western countries which have expressed their reservations on this rule. The USA, France and the UK do not accept this view. The USA holds that the question of civilians and ‘direct participation in hostilities’ must be decided on a case by case basis. France and the UK insisted that the presumption of being civilian does not override the commander’s duty to protect the troops under his command. Thus we see that the Ban panel was trying to ram down our throats principles that the western nations have rejected.

    Even the ICRC compendium itself agrees that to insist that in cases of doubt the assumption should be that the people on question are civilians would create an imbalance between the government forces and terrorists because it would be lawful to attack a terrorist only when he is ‘taking direct part in hostilities’ whereas it would be lawful to attack government forces at any time. The ICRC also observed that there is no definition of ‘direct participation in hostilities’.

    The international law of armed conflict that the LLRC has based itself however is the law of international conflict which has been approved of by the United States of America, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Italy, New Zealand. These principles adopted by western nations can be summarized as follows.

    * The principle of distinguishing between civilian and military objectives only prohibits direct attacks against civilian objects and does not deal with the question of incidental damage resulting from attacks directed against military objectives. Therefore an attack which affects civilian objects is not unlawful as long as it is aimed at a military target and the damage to civilians is not excessive.

    * While ‘all feasible precautions’ have to be taken to avoid or minimize incidental loss of civilian life, injury to civilians and damage to civilian objects, in the practical application of these rules, the obligation to take all feasible precautions is limited to those precautions that are practicable or practically possible taking into account all circumstances including humanitarian and military considerations.

    * The military manuals of the USA, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Netherlands among other nations, specifically states that the presence of civilians within or around military targets do not render such places immune from attack. Readers will note that the Ban panel said exactly the opposite in relation to Sri Lanka.

    * While the principle has been broadly stated that when there is a doubt whether a certain civilian facility is being used for military purposes, it should be given the benefit of the doubt and declared a civilian facility. The USA however objected to this on the grounds that this is contrary to the traditional law of war because it shifts the burden of determining the precise use of a facility from the party controlling that facility to the party that lacks such control!

    * With regard to the obligation to choose a target that causes least damage to civilians and civilians objects, The United States has emphasized that this is not an absolute obligation as it applies only when a choice is possible. An attacker may comply with it only if it is possible to do so subject to mission accomplishment and allowable risk or he may determine that it is impossible to make such a determination.

    * In reference to the principle of proportionality, which stipulates that the loss of incidental civilian life should not be disproportionate to the direct military advantage anticipated, the rules that the western countries adheres to is that the term ‘military advantage’ refers to the advantage anticipated from the military attack considered as a whole and not from isolated or particular parts of that attack. Further, the western states have affirmed that the term ‘concrete and direct military advantage anticipated’ refers to an expectation that the attack would make a relevant and proportionate contribution to the final goal. Some western states, namely Australia, Canada and New Zealand stipulated that the term ‘military advantage’ included the security of the attacking forces.

    This is not all, the LLRC report goes on to examine the western endorsed international laws applicable to other allegations against Sri Lanka as well. For example, with regard to the question of those trying to surrender, the UK in particular has argued that that it may not be possible to accept surrender from one unit while under fire from another position. This is exactly what the west says happened in the case of Nadesan and Pulidevan who are supposed to have been trying to surrender while their people were firing on the army from the same line. Moreover, the UK stipulated that the party which accepts surrender is not required to go out to receive the surrender – instead the party offering surrender has to come forward and submit to the control of the enemy forces. The United States has stipulated very significantly, that an offer of surrender has to be made at a time when it can be received and acted upon and a last minute surrender to an onrushing force may be difficult to accept!

    All these points are derived from observations made by the afore-mentioned group of Western nations, individually and collectively, in their responses to the relevant clauses of the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocol II of the same. With these observations the west has basically cooked their own goose as far as making allegations against Sri Lanka is concerned. Their own laws will be Sri Lanka’s defence. All that Sri Lanka now has to do is to compile a dossier on all the observations and reservations expressed by western countries b collectively or individually to various conventions governing the international law of armed conflict and to use that to prepare Sri Lanka’s response. This is also the sales pitch that has to be taken to the UN Human Rights Council to convince the other nations on that body that the west is on a politically motivated witch hunt against Sri Lanka.

  92. LLRC report is a ‘time buy’ game by GoSL since there is no other alternatives. A report released after 2 years of offence and is incomplete.

    Mad King Mahinda wants more time to protest about US comments, TNA comments .. and some more to review…. and some more to publish … and some more time table … and some time to translate … etc, etc, etc…

    By the time it reaches the end , 10 year from now, no one will remember what is all about …

    Very clever manipulation mixed with sweet but "false " promises and the end will achieve nothing :( :( :(

  93. Governments and UN bodies have held back for the past 18 months to allow the Sri Lankan commission to make progress on accountability. The commission’s failure to provide a road map for investigating and prosecuting wartime perpetrators shows the dire need for an independent, international commission. http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/12/16/sri-lanka-repo

    Sri Lanka’s LLRC Report A Whitewash http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1112/S00635/sri-
    The Australasian Federation of Tamil Associations (AFTA), the umbrella body of the Tamil associations in Australia and New Zealand is not surprised at the conclusion made by the Sri Lankan President appointed Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) that it is satisfied that the military strategy adopted to secure the LTTE held areas was one that was carefully conceived, in which the protection of the civilian population was given the highest priority.
    AFTA rejects the commission’s reasoning that the slowness of the movement of the security forces during the last phase of the military operations is due to a carefully worked out strategy of avoiding civilian casualties or minimizing them, as baseless and blatantly dishonest.

  94. Sri Lanka intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested through deportation from India and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  95. LLRC report will advance accountability: Commonwealth

    The Commonwealth has hoped that a Sri Lankan war commission report on the conflict with the LTTE will advance the cause of accountability, saying that genuine reconciliation and accountability go hand-in-hand.

    Applauding the intent of transparency with which the Sri Lankan government tabled the full report of the commission before Parliament, Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma said the recommendations in the report should be implemented in an objective, even-handed and forward-looking manner.

    “It is for the government and people of Sri Lanka to chart their country’s way forward after the military defeat of the forces of terrorism,” Sharma said, commenting on the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

    “The Commonwealth, as a partner of Sri Lanka, which is a founder member of the modern Commonwealth, remains ready to assist the government in dealing with the challenges of building a harmonious and sustainable peace,” he said in a press release.

    The LLRC was appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in May 2010 to probe the role of the nation’s army in the final stages of the civil war.

    The war came to an end in 2009 when the Lankan military crushed the rebels.

    The LLRC report cleared the nation’s army of deliberately targeting civilians in the final stages of the war against the LTTE, though conceding that some isolated incidents could have occurred.

    The commission called for a political settlement of the ethnic conflict with the minority Tamils and asked the government to take the initiative for “a serious and structured” dialogue with all political parties, particularly those representing the minorities.

    It asked the government to reach out to minorities and said that the Tamils should in turn reposition themselves in their role vis-a-vis the state.

    However, US-based Human Rights Watch has slammed the report, saying it failed to fix accountability and “disregards” the “worst abuse” by government forces.

  96. The LLRC is report full of lies and as corrupt as the uneducated thugs that run this third world poor country, Sri Lanka.

  97. Under the Rajapakse’s command, Sri Lanka army committed atrocities on a large scale against helpless women, men, children which demonstrates systematicity in the final stages of war.

    The Rajapakse Bros. therefore indeed have command responsibility for war crimes in the last phase of the war and should be sent to the Hague.

    According Buddhist beliefs, there is a thing called – karma, so their time to answer for the mass murder of the innocent people will surely come!

  98. Who cares what some hysterical drone from Human Rights Watch says. These were the same people who were concocting outrageous lies about collective punishment and indefinite detention after the LTTE had been defeated. HRW were invited to testify at the LLRC and refused.
    http://tinyurl.com/yhwgqza

    @ Subramaniam: Tamilnut has gone completely mad. Their best previous effort was Hordes of Genocidal Sinhala Monkeys Plague Resettled Eelam Families in Vanni http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  99. Sri Lanka Independence from England every one of the commissions or investigations and inquiries established by the Sri Lankan government to examine human rights violations and to investigate atrocities against the tiny Hindu Minority in Sri Lanka did not result in justice for any of the victims. I don’t have any hope that latest investigation will achieve something.. This is just another batch of delaying tactics to avoid justice :)

  100. Governments and UN bodies have held back for the past 18 months to allow the Sri Lankan commission to make progress on accountability. The commission’s failure to provide a road map for investigating and prosecuting wartime perpetrators shows the dire need for an independent, international commission. http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/12/16/sri-lanka-repo

    Sri Lanka’s LLRC Report A Whitewash http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1112/S00635/sri-
    The Australasian Federation of Tamil Associations (AFTA), the umbrella body of the Tamil associations in Australia and New Zealand is not surprised at the conclusion made by the Sri Lankan President appointed Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) that it is satisfied that the military strategy adopted to secure the LTTE held areas was one that was carefully conceived, in which the protection of the civilian population was given the highest priority.
    AFTA rejects the commission’s reasoning that the slowness of the movement of the security forces during the last phase of the military operations is due to a carefully worked out strategy of avoiding civilian casualties or minimizing them, as baseless and blatantly dishonest.

  101. Governments and UN bodies have held back for the past 18 months to allow the Sri Lankan commission to make progress on accountability. The commission’s failure to provide a road map for investigating and prosecuting wartime perpetrators shows the dire need for an independent, international commission. http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/12/16/sri-lanka-repo

    Sri Lanka’s LLRC Report A Whitewash http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1112/S00635/sri-
    The Australasian Federation of Tamil Associations (AFTA), the umbrella body of the Tamil associations in Australia and New Zealand is not surprised at the conclusion made by the Sri Lankan President appointed Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) that it is satisfied that the military strategy adopted to secure the LTTE held areas was one that was carefully conceived, in which the protection of the civilian population was given the highest priority.
    AFTA rejects the commission’s reasoning that the slowness of the movement of the security forces during the last phase of the military operations is due to a carefully worked out strategy of avoiding civilian casualties or minimizing them, as baseless and blatantly dishonest.

  102. Sri Lanka intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested through deportation from India and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  103. Sri Lanka intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested through deportation from India and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  104. Who cares what some hysterical drone from Human Rights Watch says. These were the same people who were concocting outrageous lies about collective punishment and indefinite detention after the LTTE had been defeated. HRW were invited to testify at the LLRC and refused.
    http://tinyurl.com/yhwgqza

    @ Subramaniam: Tamilnut has gone completely mad. Their best previous effort was Hordes of Genocidal Sinhala Monkeys Plague Resettled Eelam Families in Vanni http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  105. Who cares what some hysterical drone from Human Rights Watch says. These were the same people who were concocting outrageous lies about collective punishment and indefinite detention after the LTTE had been defeated. HRW were invited to testify at the LLRC and refused.
    http://tinyurl.com/yhwgqza

    @ Subramaniam: Tamilnut has gone completely mad. Their best previous effort was Hordes of Genocidal Sinhala Monkeys Plague Resettled Eelam Families in Vanni http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  106. "…when dawn broke, they started to wander about the forest, seeking a path, but all hope soon faded. They were well and truly lost. On they walked and walked under heavy genocidal shellfire, till suddenly they came upon a strange cottage in the middle of a glade.
     
       "This is chocolate!" gasped Charles Anthony as he broke a lump of plaster from the wall.
     
       "And this is icing!" exclaimed Duwaraka, putting another piece of wall in her mouth. Starving but delighted, the children began to eat pieces of candy broken off the cottage.
     
       "Isn't this delicious?" said Duwaraka, with her mouth full. She had never tasted anything so nice.
     
       "We'll stay here," Charles Anthony declared, munching a bit of nougat. They were just about to try a piece of the biscuit door when it quietly swung open.

    They had found Eezham. Or was it Eelam. No-one knew or cared.

  107. TNA demands internationally mandated mechanism for war-crimes accountability

    Rajavarothayam Sampanthan, parliamentary group leader of Tamil National Alliance, in a forceful articulation of the stand of the TNA on the report from the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) said that the report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability, and added that “the findings of the LLRC offend the dignity of these victims [deposed before the LLRC]," according to a report appearing in the Hindu. In a previous statement nominated TNA MP, and attorney, M.A. Sumanthiran told Sunday Leader that "the Commission has severely contradicted itself by concluding that the civilians had not been deliberately targeted by the security forces in the final stages of the war." http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  108. “Sri Lankan commission says military didn’t intentionally target civilians in civil war”

    Hahahahaha….what a Joke.

    The LLRC is Biased , Flawed at every level

    The Sri Lankan Genocidal Government is Fully Responsible for the Mass murders of More than 154000 Tamil Civilians including toddlers.

    All Know that this War against the Innocent Tamils were well planned one.

    ” War is often used to mask or cover up a genocide.”

    “Planning genocide, encouraging or persuading others to commit genocide are also crimes.”

    During the Genocide , more than 40,000 innocent Tamil women/girls were captured and taken to military camps and they were gang raped by the sri lankan genocidal militaries.

    This kind of Gang rapes is still taking place in Sri lankan genocidal government militaries occupied Tamils area (North and East).

    Many thousands of the gang raped victims are dead and few thousands of survivors do not want to share their experience because of the fear that they will be blamed or even rejected in the conservative Tamil communities.

    The mass killing of Innocent Tamil civilians including toddlers , gang raping innocent Tamil women / girls as young as 7 is a war crime !!!!

  109. Militarization destroys livelihoods for the Tamil War Victims in Sri Lanka

    Today, the most serious problem the people in the North – East face on a day to day basis is that of militarisation. The military controls all aspects of individual, social and professional life. But perhaps the most destructive practice is the running of commercial enterprises by the military. From barber saloons to bars, and restaurants and hotels to tourist services – the military’s presence is strong.

    One story about the devastated affects of the militarization .

    He had met a labourer on the A9 near Mankulam, who had asked him the price he paid for a Thmbili that he was drinking. This gentleman had told him that he paid Rs.40.00, to which the labourer had said that it only costs Rs.20.00 in Vavuniya, and that if the local people are allowed to sell this they would sell it for Rs.30.00 and make a 50 per cent profit.

    But the army sells it for 100 per cents profit and will not let them engage in trade. This has completely decimated the livelihoods of people in those areas. People would otherwise have run the local barber saloon, or set up their little shops on the side of the A9 highway are rendered unemployed and destitute. If there is one certainty in this country, it is that you cannot compete with the military.

    But it is not just livelihoods – the entire economic structure of the North has been undermined. Because labour and overheads are free of charge when the military gets involved in business, pricing become distorted and competition is quashed. The military is an external, artificial factor that further disturbs economic equilibrium in an already disturbed land.

    It does not require a prophet – only a student of recent history – to predict the trajectory of the Sri Lankan economy in the coming years. And we have seen warning signs in the last few years. From security companies to hotels and restaurants to selling vegetables – the military is unmistakeably becoming interwoven into the fabric of the country’s economy.

    As we consider the subject of defence, consider the voices of those from the North – East. Heed their warning. In their history, you will see your future; unless we dramatically change the way we run this country and say enough is enough. Civilian rule will be a matter of the past. Civilian rule however flawed and inefficient, however chaotic and unwieldy, should never be surrendered to the oppressive dictatorship of military economic rule.

  110. Though not without flaws and lacuna, the long awaited LLRC report does not disappoint, and reaches high standards, ranking with the best reports emanating over the decades from official and semi-official/autonomous Sri Lankan commissions, reviews and probes. It is a serious, thoughtful, carefully written and constructed text, striking in its fair-mindedness and balance. It deserves constructive engagement with, by all concerned Sri Lankan citizens and those in the world community who are concerned about and with Sri Lanka.

    Let us first dispense with the flaws and gaps, of which there are chiefly two. Firstly, the Report echoes the conventional wisdom, as does the Norwegian (NORAD) post-mortem, that the CFA was the result and in the context of the military weakness of the Sri Lankan state. This is factually incorrect since it ignores the chronology of events, in which the deadly LRP missions which were taking down the Tiger command structure, followed and not preceded the disastrous Agni Kheela operation and the devastating raid on Katunayake airport. Thus the lopsided character of the CFA which heavily favoured the LTTE did not reflect the real balance of forces and was not inevitable. Secondly, the LLRC Report draws a veil of silence over the even more lopsided post-tsunami relief mechanism, the PTOMS, which was negotiated at the tail end of the Chandrika presidency and was frozen in its dangerous middle tier, by the Supreme Court, responding to a petition by the JVP. These errors and omissions should not, however, detract from the essentials merit of the Report.

    The Report is Janus-faced in the best, original sense of the term. It looks back at the war and the context of the conflict and provides a perspective of the kind of society we need. It constitutes the only road map so far, to a durable peace and a better future. It does not stop at a vision, sometimes more implicit than explicit, but pinpoints wrongs and shortcomings that require rectification while listing reforms that cry out for urgent implementation.

    Responses to the LLRC report have been of two sorts. One is that it is basically laudable and balanced, containing recommendations which should be promptly acted upon. This response then subdivides between those who are hopeful of action and others who are pessimistic or cynical. The second response is that the LLRC report is far from satisfactory, and is a whitewash or to change the metaphor, a sweeping under the carpet of war crimes and accountability issues.

    To my mind the first response —with its optimistic and pessimistic subsets— constitutes a reasonable reaction, while the second does not. I say this because those who dismiss the report as His Master’s Voice make the fundamental mistake of being teleological in their approach. Having concluded a priori, that the Sri Lankan state and armed forces were guilty of war crimes and/or crimes against humanity, they fault the LLRC Report for not having arrived at the same conclusion, and dismiss it out of hand, echoing calls for an international inquiry.

    These critics overlook or fail to undertake at least five basic tasks. They fail to grapple or even make reference to the rigorous reconstruction and argumentation that leads the Report to conclude that despite episodic crimes, civilian casualties were not, for the most part, intentional. They ignore the fact that this finding is the same as that which was arrived at by at least two impeccably non-state, independent sources, the oldest civil society think tank in Sri Lanka, the Marga Institute and its respected founder and outstanding liberal thinker Godfrey Gunatilleke, as well as a joint commission of three private sector business confederations. They fail to examine and disprove the extensive and solid argument on international humanitarian law in the LLRC report. They disregard the listing of specific cases, based on testimony, which require independent investigation. They ignore the chapter on Human rights, which, unlike that on international humanitarian law, is quite critical of the status quo.

    The Report also cuts like a surgeon’s knife through the old questions as to what the grievances of the Tamil community are, which of them are genuine and legitimate and how they differ from the grievances of the Sinhala community. This is done in excellent segments entitled ‘Grievances of the Tamil Community’ ‘The Historical Background relating to Majority-Minority relationships in Sri Lanka’ and ‘The Different Phases in the Narrative of Tamil Grievances’ (pp291-294, 369-370).

    Perhaps the single most important contribution of the LLRC Report is its clear and unambiguous identification of the causes of the Sri Lankan conflict and crisis, the resolution of which remains the central challenge before the country. The LLRC has, in short, undertaken a diagnosis and provided a prescription.

    “The Commission takes the view that the root cause of the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka lies in the failure of successive Governments to address the genuine grievances of the Tamil people. The country may not have been confronted with a violent separatist agenda, if the political consensus at the time of independence had been sustained and if policies had been implemented to build up and strengthen the confidence of the minorities around the system which had gained a reasonable measure of acceptance. A political solution is imperative to address the causes of the conflict…” (p 291, articles 8.150, 8.151)

    The LLRC Report justifies its most ambitious claim, which is to provide a post-war programme and pathway.

    “… To this end, the success of ending armed conflict must be invested in an all-inclusive political process of dialogue and accommodation so that the conflict by other means will not continue… However, if these expectations were to become a reality in the form of a multi-ethnic nation at peace with itself in a democratic Sri Lanka, the Government and all political leaders must manifest political will and sincerity of purpose to take the necessary decisions to ensure the good-faith implementation of the Commission’s recommendations… While not being an exhaustive agenda to address, let alone cure, all ills of post conflict Sri Lanka, the recommendations of the Commission could nevertheless constitute a framework for action by all stakeholders, in particular the Government, political parties and community leaders. This framework would go a long way in constructing a platform for consolidating post-conflict peace and security as well as amity and cooperation within and between the diverse communities in Sri Lanka.” (Preamble, pp.1-2)

    Overall, perhaps the most vital contribution of the Report is its potential to re-balance the Sri Lankan policy (and political) discourse, re-constituting a tragically vacated middle ground or centre space. Indeed, the LLRC report is that rarity: a welcome example of an enlightened Middle Path, at a time of strident affirmations of dogmatic fundamental positions.

  111. What I want to say is that true reconciliation is always victim centered.

    True reconciliation must listen to the voices of those who have suffered. True reconciliation is never prescriptive by any government. Recently there was the first National Conference on reconciliation. The word ‘reconciliation’ doesn’t fit that conference. 22 people spoke, except 3; all were from the majority community. I’m told that the first list of 16 persons were entirely from the majority community. What is the reconciliation? With whom are you trying to reconcile? With yourselves? If you are serious about reconciliation you must listen to the voices of those whom you want to reconcile. If you continue with this trend, this is just another ruse that the government is using and Sir, I was saying – listen to the voices that have suffered. Nobody can gainsay the fact that it is the people of the North and the East who have suffered more during this war. You can’t say otherwise. What is the mechanism that the government has instituted to listen to the voices of those people?

  112. “6,000 of us crossed from Kilinochchi to Vavuniya117. There was severe shelling but we went in search of the Army – we went towards the Army, the Army was there on the way – it was they who took us to the Camp. The Army helped us.”

  113. “…by the 23rd April 2009 the Army had entered Puthumatthalan and Ampalavanapokkanai area. It may be on 23rd of 24th morning I suppose, the Army came in there and opened fire and took us from the bunkers safely and took us to safe areas. On 25th along with many other families we were taken to Cheddikulam…”

  114. Tamils under the jack boot of the Sri Lanka army

    I said if you really want reconciliation with the people who have been trodden under the jack boot of the army, who have been mercilessly ill-treated, who are still living under tarpauline sheets, because there are no houses that are being built for them, who have to see the spectacle of the multi-billion dollar roads and bridges that are being built by the side, but they have no roof over their heads, who still hold pictures of their loved ones going from street to street, from junction to junction, from town to town, looking for their loved ones who are missing. You treat them the way you are treating them today, you will never achieve reconciliation. If you are sincere about reconciliation, if you really want this country to be one, there is only one way, and that way is to listen to the voices of those people, grant them the right that they are entitled to as a People, and then in one country we can live together as brothers, as equals with dignity.

  115. “we moved through the main road, there was a bund at the main road also but that bund was demolished. There was Army on both sides of the road and Army advised us to take the route on the road and not to get down because of the mines. As we proceeded taking this route the Army was there and they provided us water and meals”

  116. ‘as we passed Iranapalai and went to Mathalan area there was sea on one side and the lagoon on the other…it was shallow water and we just managed to go….at one point we could not proceed at all ….we got stuck there so we went to Pokkanai temple and the Army came from both sides, the LTTE had withdrawn from the area and the Army took us to safety, it was neck deep water and the Army held us by our hands and took us.’

  117. TNA demands internationally mandated mechanism for war-crimes accountability

    Rajavarothayam Sampanthan, parliamentary group leader of Tamil National Alliance, in a forceful articulation of the stand of the TNA on the report from the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) said that the report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability, and added that “the findings of the LLRC offend the dignity of these victims [deposed before the LLRC]," according to a report appearing in the Hindu. In a previous statement nominated TNA MP, and attorney, M.A. Sumanthiran told Sunday Leader that "the Commission has severely contradicted itself by concluding that the civilians had not been deliberately targeted by the security forces in the final stages of the war." http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  118. TNA demands internationally mandated mechanism for war-crimes accountability

    Rajavarothayam Sampanthan, parliamentary group leader of Tamil National Alliance, in a forceful articulation of the stand of the TNA on the report from the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) said that the report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability, and added that “the findings of the LLRC offend the dignity of these victims [deposed before the LLRC]," according to a report appearing in the Hindu. In a previous statement nominated TNA MP, and attorney, M.A. Sumanthiran told Sunday Leader that "the Commission has severely contradicted itself by concluding that the civilians had not been deliberately targeted by the security forces in the final stages of the war." http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&art

  119. SL intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed through deportation from India.

    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=34721

  120. The report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission was presented to parliament on Friday, and in the view of the present columnist, the most important part of that report is on pages 40 to 48. So far, all we have been hearing are the allegations made against Sri Lanka in reports compiled overseas. There is an international lynch mob baying for Sri Lankan blood and it is such prejudiced sources that have been telling us what international laws relating to armed conflict apply to the Sri Lankan case.

    In the two and a half years after the end of the war, no counter had been made by Sri Lanka to these allegations of having broken international laws. The LLRC report cannot be considered a counter to those allegations, but at least there is a statement of how an independent body of Sri Lankan legal experts would see the applicability of the international law of armed conflict and international humanitarian law to the Sri Lankan context. The international report that dealt most comprehensively with the legal aspects of the Sri Lankan case was the UN Secretary General’s advisory panel report of April 2011. According to the position stated in that report, Sri Lanka basically stands condemned already. The position taken by Ban Ki-moon’s panelists can be summarized as follows.

    * Sri Lanka has signed only the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and not its Additional Protocol II which deals with internal conflicts. Therefore Sri Lanka is not covered by Additional Protocol II.

    * What is applicable to the Sri Lankan case is only Common Article 3 (Common in the sense of being common to all four of the Geneva Conventions) which deals with internal conflicts and broadly stipulates that those taking no active part in the hostilities should be treated humanely.

    * Attacks may be directed only at combatants and not at civilians, the latter being defined as those who are not members of an armed group taking part in the conflict. There is an ‘unconditional and absolute prohibition’ on the targeting of civilians. This absolute immunity is available to a population that is ‘predominantly civilian’ which means that even if there are individuals who are combatants among the population, that does not deprive the said population of its civilian character.

    * While attacks on civilians have to be ‘willful’ to become a crime, and the accused has to deliberately target and kill civilians, this element of a willful attack will also apply to an attack that is reckless with regard to its possible impact on civilians.

    * If it is argued that the army did not target civilians deliberately, and targeted only the LTTE, an attack still remains unlawful if it hits a lawful military object and a civilian object at the same time.

    This means that you cannot fire back at terrorists who shoot at the army from among civilians.

    What was stated in the Ban panel report was undoubtedly the lunatic fringe of the law of armed conflict. With laws such as the above, no country on earth would be able to combat terrorism. The LLRC started off by echoing the views expressed in the ICRC compendium of Customary International Humanitarian Law. A key observation that the ICRC makes is that Additional Protocol II of the Geneva Conventions which deals with internal conflicts has not defined the terms ‘civilian’ and ‘combatant’ in a satisfactory manner and that all subsequent international treaties have also not defined these two terms.

    The Ban Ki-moon panel report stressed as we saw above that if there is a doubt whether a person is a civilian, he will be considered a civilian. But this is not accepted by key western countries which have expressed their reservations on this rule. The USA, France and the UK do not accept this view. The USA holds that the question of civilians and ‘direct participation in hostilities’ must be decided on a case by case basis. France and the UK insisted that the presumption of being civilian does not override the commander’s duty to protect the troops under his command. Thus we see that the Ban panel was trying to ram down our throats principles that the western nations have rejected.

    Even the ICRC compendium itself agrees that to insist that in cases of doubt the assumption should be that the people on question are civilians would create an imbalance between the government forces and terrorists because it would be lawful to attack a terrorist only when he is ‘taking direct part in hostilities’ whereas it would be lawful to attack government forces at any time. The ICRC also observed that there is no definition of ‘direct participation in hostilities’.

    The international law of armed conflict that the LLRC has based itself however is the law of international conflict which has been approved of by the United States of America, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Netherlands, Australia, Canada, Italy, New Zealand. These principles adopted by western nations can be summarized as follows.

    * The principle of distinguishing between civilian and military objectives only prohibits direct attacks against civilian objects and does not deal with the question of incidental damage resulting from attacks directed against military objectives. Therefore an attack which affects civilian objects is not unlawful as long as it is aimed at a military target and the damage to civilians is not excessive.

    * While ‘all feasible precautions’ have to be taken to avoid or minimize incidental loss of civilian life, injury to civilians and damage to civilian objects, in the practical application of these rules, the obligation to take all feasible precautions is limited to those precautions that are practicable or practically possible taking into account all circumstances including humanitarian and military considerations.

    * The military manuals of the USA, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Netherlands among other nations, specifically states that the presence of civilians within or around military targets do not render such places immune from attack. Readers will note that the Ban panel said exactly the opposite in relation to Sri Lanka.

    * While the principle has been broadly stated that when there is a doubt whether a certain civilian facility is being used for military purposes, it should be given the benefit of the doubt and declared a civilian facility. The USA however objected to this on the grounds that this is contrary to the traditional law of war because it shifts the burden of determining the precise use of a facility from the party controlling that facility to the party that lacks such control!

    * With regard to the obligation to choose a target that causes least damage to civilians and civilians objects, The United States has emphasized that this is not an absolute obligation as it applies only when a choice is possible. An attacker may comply with it only if it is possible to do so subject to mission accomplishment and allowable risk or he may determine that it is impossible to make such a determination.

    * In reference to the principle of proportionality, which stipulates that the loss of incidental civilian life should not be disproportionate to the direct military advantage anticipated, the rules that the western countries adheres to is that the term ‘military advantage’ refers to the advantage anticipated from the military attack considered as a whole and not from isolated or particular parts of that attack. Further, the western states have affirmed that the term ‘concrete and direct military advantage anticipated’ refers to an expectation that the attack would make a relevant and proportionate contribution to the final goal. Some western states, namely Australia, Canada and New Zealand stipulated that the term ‘military advantage’ included the security of the attacking forces.

    This is not all, the LLRC report goes on to examine the western endorsed international laws applicable to other allegations against Sri Lanka as well. For example, with regard to the question of those trying to surrender, the UK in particular has argued that that it may not be possible to accept surrender from one unit while under fire from another position. This is exactly what the west says happened in the case of Nadesan and Pulidevan who are supposed to have been trying to surrender while their people were firing on the army from the same line. Moreover, the UK stipulated that the party which accepts surrender is not required to go out to receive the surrender – instead the party offering surrender has to come forward and submit to the control of the enemy forces. The United States has stipulated very significantly, that an offer of surrender has to be made at a time when it can be received and acted upon and a last minute surrender to an onrushing force may be difficult to accept!

    All these points are derived from observations made by the afore-mentioned group of Western nations, individually and collectively, in their responses to the relevant clauses of the Geneva Conventions and Additional Protocol II of the same. With these observations the west has basically cooked their own goose as far as making allegations against Sri Lanka is concerned. Their own laws will be Sri Lanka’s defence. All that Sri Lanka now has to do is to compile a dossier on all the observations and reservations expressed by western countries b collectively or individually to various conventions governing the international law of armed conflict and to use that to prepare Sri Lanka’s response. This is also the sales pitch that has to be taken to the UN Human Rights Council to convince the other nations on that body that the west is on a politically motivated witch hunt against Sri Lanka.

  121. LLRC report is a ‘time buy’ game by GoSL since there is no other alternatives. A report released after 2 years of offence and is incomplete.

    Mad King Mahinda wants more time to protest about US comments, TNA comments .. and some more to review…. and some more to publish … and some more time table … and some time to translate … etc, etc, etc…

    By the time it reaches the end , 10 year from now, no one will remember what is all about …

    Very clever manipulation mixed with sweet but “false ” promises and the end will achieve nothing :( :( :(

  122. LLRC report will advance accountability: Commonwealth

    The Commonwealth has hoped that a Sri Lankan war commission report on the conflict with the LTTE will advance the cause of accountability, saying that genuine reconciliation and accountability go hand-in-hand.

    Applauding the intent of transparency with which the Sri Lankan government tabled the full report of the commission before Parliament, Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma said the recommendations in the report should be implemented in an objective, even-handed and forward-looking manner.

    “It is for the government and people of Sri Lanka to chart their country’s way forward after the military defeat of the forces of terrorism,” Sharma said, commenting on the report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).

    “The Commonwealth, as a partner of Sri Lanka, which is a founder member of the modern Commonwealth, remains ready to assist the government in dealing with the challenges of building a harmonious and sustainable peace,” he said in a press release.

    The LLRC was appointed by President Mahinda Rajapaksa in May 2010 to probe the role of the nation’s army in the final stages of the civil war.

    The war came to an end in 2009 when the Lankan military crushed the rebels.

    The LLRC report cleared the nation’s army of deliberately targeting civilians in the final stages of the war against the LTTE, though conceding that some isolated incidents could have occurred.

    The commission called for a political settlement of the ethnic conflict with the minority Tamils and asked the government to take the initiative for “a serious and structured” dialogue with all political parties, particularly those representing the minorities.

    It asked the government to reach out to minorities and said that the Tamils should in turn reposition themselves in their role vis-a-vis the state.

    However, US-based Human Rights Watch has slammed the report, saying it failed to fix accountability and “disregards” the “worst abuse” by government forces.

  123. LLRC is a joke !!

    The LLRC is ” La La Land ” where Sri Lanka Army Army saved 300,000 Tamils,killed only zero civilians,massacared no body, abducted none,made to disappear ‘nil’,raped not a single women,but only did a humanitarian rescue operation and saved the Tamils from the clutches of terrorists.

    The story is nice but no one is buying that, after all the real stories coming out in the public, one by one.The latest one was from an army high ranking official spilling the beans to the world.

    Let us see the real facts & observations of unbiased analysts of repute.
    Majority of the world now insist that the allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by Sri Lanka government forces needed to be fully investigated.

    The U.N. Panel of Experts which investigated the last stages of the war had concluded that the Sri Lanka government include deliberately underestimating civilian numbers in the Vanni in order to deprive them of food and medical supplies, deliberately or recklessly endangering the lives of civilians in No-Fire Zones, targeting civilian objects including hospitals, and executing or causing the disappearance of those who had surrendered.

    “The LLRC concludes that, on these issues, the government is not responsible. Instead, it shifts blame onto individual soldiers and surmises that any violations that may have been committed were merely isolated incidents. For example, large numbers of disappearances that resulted from the surrender of unarmed persons to government forces have been cynically dismissed as isolated incidents perpetrated ‘by a few’.

    The LLRC unjustifiably rules out the possibility that these violations were systematic.

    This is why US wants another report from Sri Lanka !!!!

  124. The LLRC is report full of lies and as corrupt as the uneducated thugs that run this third world poor country, Sri Lanka.

  125. Sri Lanka Independence from England every one of the commissions or investigations and inquiries established by the Sri Lankan government to examine human rights violations and to investigate atrocities against the tiny Hindu Minority in Sri Lanka did not result in justice for any of the victims. I don’t have any hope that latest investigation will achieve something.. This is just another batch of delaying tactics to avoid justice :)

  126. Governments and UN bodies have held back for the past 18 months to allow the Sri Lankan commission to make progress on accountability. The commission’s failure to provide a road map for investigating and prosecuting wartime perpetrators shows the dire need for an independent, international commission.
    http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/12/16/sri-lanka-report-fails-advance-accountability

    Sri Lanka’s LLRC Report A Whitewash
    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/WO1112/S00635/sri-lankas-llrc-report-a-whitewash.htm
    The Australasian Federation of Tamil Associations (AFTA), the umbrella body of the Tamil associations in Australia and New Zealand is not surprised at the conclusion made by the Sri Lankan President appointed Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) that it is satisfied that the military strategy adopted to secure the LTTE held areas was one that was carefully conceived, in which the protection of the civilian population was given the highest priority.
    AFTA rejects the commission’s reasoning that the slowness of the movement of the security forces during the last phase of the military operations is due to a carefully worked out strategy of avoiding civilian casualties or minimizing them, as baseless and blatantly dishonest.

  127. Sri Lanka intelligence operatives are targeting genocide witnesses in Tamil Nadu who possess vital first-person accounts of atrocities committed in 2009.

    A number of Tamil witnesses, who gave eyewitness accounts to the genocide in Sri Lanka have already been arrested through deportation from India and handed over to the Rajapaksa Regime in Sri Lanka to be killed

    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=34721

  128. Who cares what some hysterical drone from Human Rights Watch says. These were the same people who were concocting outrageous lies about collective punishment and indefinite detention after the LTTE had been defeated. HRW were invited to testify at the LLRC and refused.

    http://tinyurl.com/yhwgqza

    @ Subramaniam: Tamilnut has gone completely mad. Their best previous effort was Hordes of Genocidal Sinhala Monkeys Plague Resettled Eelam Families in Vanni
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=32363

  129. “…when dawn broke, they started to wander about the forest, seeking a path, but all hope soon faded. They were well and truly lost. On they walked and walked under heavy genocidal shellfire, till suddenly they came upon a strange cottage in the middle of a glade.
     
       “This is chocolate!” gasped Charles Anthony as he broke a lump of plaster from the wall.
     
       “And this is icing!” exclaimed Duwaraka, putting another piece of wall in her mouth. Starving but delighted, the children began to eat pieces of candy broken off the cottage.
     
       “Isn’t this delicious?” said Duwaraka, with her mouth full. She had never tasted anything so nice.
     
       “We’ll stay here,” Charles Anthony declared, munching a bit of nougat. They were just about to try a piece of the biscuit door when it quietly swung open.

    They had found Eezham. Or was it Eelam. No-one knew or cared.

  130. “Sri Lankan commission says military didn’t intentionally target civilians in civil war”

    Hahahahaha….what a Joke.

    The LLRC is Biased , Flawed at every level

    The Sri Lankan Genocidal Government is Fully Responsible for the Mass murders of More than 154000 Tamil Civilians including toddlers.

    All Know that this War against the Innocent Tamils were well planned one.

    ” War is often used to mask or cover up a genocide.”

    “Planning genocide, encouraging or persuading others to commit genocide are also crimes.”

    During the Genocide , more than 40,000 innocent Tamil women/girls were captured and taken to military camps and they were gang raped by the sri lankan genocidal militaries.

    This kind of Gang rapes is still taking place in Sri lankan genocidal government militaries occupied Tamils area (North and East).

    Many thousands of the gang raped victims are dead and few thousands of survivors do not want to share their experience because of the fear that they will be blamed or even rejected in the conservative Tamil communities.

    The mass killing of Innocent Tamil civilians including toddlers , gang raping innocent Tamil women / girls as young as 7 is a war crime !!!!

  131. Militarization destroys livelihoods for the Tamil War Victims in Sri Lanka

    Today, the most serious problem the people in the North – East face on a day to day basis is that of militarisation. The military controls all aspects of individual, social and professional life. But perhaps the most destructive practice is the running of commercial enterprises by the military. From barber saloons to bars, and restaurants and hotels to tourist services – the military’s presence is strong.

    One story about the devastated affects of the militarization .

    He had met a labourer on the A9 near Mankulam, who had asked him the price he paid for a Thmbili that he was drinking. This gentleman had told him that he paid Rs.40.00, to which the labourer had said that it only costs Rs.20.00 in Vavuniya, and that if the local people are allowed to sell this they would sell it for Rs.30.00 and make a 50 per cent profit.

    But the army sells it for 100 per cents profit and will not let them engage in trade. This has completely decimated the livelihoods of people in those areas. People would otherwise have run the local barber saloon, or set up their little shops on the side of the A9 highway are rendered unemployed and destitute. If there is one certainty in this country, it is that you cannot compete with the military.

    But it is not just livelihoods – the entire economic structure of the North has been undermined. Because labour and overheads are free of charge when the military gets involved in business, pricing become distorted and competition is quashed. The military is an external, artificial factor that further disturbs economic equilibrium in an already disturbed land.

    It does not require a prophet – only a student of recent history – to predict the trajectory of the Sri Lankan economy in the coming years. And we have seen warning signs in the last few years. From security companies to hotels and restaurants to selling vegetables – the military is unmistakeably becoming interwoven into the fabric of the country’s economy.

    As we consider the subject of defence, consider the voices of those from the North – East. Heed their warning. In their history, you will see your future; unless we dramatically change the way we run this country and say enough is enough. Civilian rule will be a matter of the past. Civilian rule however flawed and inefficient, however chaotic and unwieldy, should never be surrendered to the oppressive dictatorship of military economic rule.

  132. What I want to say is that true reconciliation is always victim centered.

    True reconciliation must listen to the voices of those who have suffered. True reconciliation is never prescriptive by any government. Recently there was the first National Conference on reconciliation. The word ‘reconciliation’ doesn’t fit that conference. 22 people spoke, except 3; all were from the majority community. I’m told that the first list of 16 persons were entirely from the majority community. What is the reconciliation? With whom are you trying to reconcile? With yourselves? If you are serious about reconciliation you must listen to the voices of those whom you want to reconcile. If you continue with this trend, this is just another ruse that the government is using and Sir, I was saying – listen to the voices that have suffered. Nobody can gainsay the fact that it is the people of the North and the East who have suffered more during this war. You can’t say otherwise. What is the mechanism that the government has instituted to listen to the voices of those people?

  133. Tamils under the jack boot of the Sri Lanka army

    I said if you really want reconciliation with the people who have been trodden under the jack boot of the army, who have been mercilessly ill-treated, who are still living under tarpauline sheets, because there are no houses that are being built for them, who have to see the spectacle of the multi-billion dollar roads and bridges that are being built by the side, but they have no roof over their heads, who still hold pictures of their loved ones going from street to street, from junction to junction, from town to town, looking for their loved ones who are missing. You treat them the way you are treating them today, you will never achieve reconciliation. If you are sincere about reconciliation, if you really want this country to be one, there is only one way, and that way is to listen to the voices of those people, grant them the right that they are entitled to as a People, and then in one country we can live together as brothers, as equals with dignity.

  134. TNA demands internationally mandated mechanism for war-crimes accountability

    Rajavarothayam Sampanthan, parliamentary group leader of Tamil National Alliance, in a forceful articulation of the stand of the TNA on the report from the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) said that the report “categorically fails to effectively and meaningfully deal with issues of accountability, and added that “the findings of the LLRC offend the dignity of these victims [deposed before the LLRC],” according to a report appearing in the Hindu. In a previous statement nominated TNA MP, and attorney, M.A. Sumanthiran told Sunday Leader that “the Commission has severely contradicted itself by concluding that the civilians had not been deliberately targeted by the security forces in the final stages of the war.”
    http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=34720