தேசம்

கருத்துக்கள உறுப்பினர்கள்
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தேசம் last won the day on June 27 2010

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About தேசம்

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  1. கே பி சித்திரவதையில்; அடுத்த இலக்கு உருத்ர குமார்; பொய் சந்தர்ப்பம் பார்த்து காத்து நிற்கும் இலங்கை.அமெரிக்க உடந்தை ஆகலாம்
  2. LTTE's Head of International Relations explained in an interview Tuesday to a Australian Tamil Media about what happened at the last hours of Tamil genocide in the battle front in the Tamil land. He also spoke about the urgent responsibilities that lie ahead of the World Tamils. LTTE's political wing was in touch with S. Pathmanathan, LTTE's Head of International Relations until the last moment they were slaughtered by Sri Lankan Army on May 17. Last hours in the battle front; what’s next - S.Pathmanathan
  3. As Tamil National reported earlier the Sri Lanka Army has not silenced the gunfire as announced to the world. The Sri Lanka Military attack on no fire zone continues as usual. In today’s attack from midnight till 5 pm, more than 200 civilians were dead and around 300 were injured. Kapilan, a fisherman from Valaignarmadam spoke to Tamil National today. In the interview with us, he narrates the real situation inside the no fire zone. கபிலன் அவர்களின் செவ்வியை கேட்க Courtesy:TamilNational.com
  4. Former Indian Supreme Court Judge and a well respected Jurist V R Krishna Iyer appeals to immediately declare cessation of military operation under international supervision in Sri Lanka. In his appeal, Justice Krishna Iyer said, ‘sovereignty does not authorize internal atrocity and incalculable casualty.’ The world around should intervene to see justice was done. Full Text of his Message is reproduced here: “I do not take sides in this message with the LTTE or the Srilankan Government although there have been violent excesses on both sides resulting huge loss of life, property and tremendous suffering which I hate as one who stands for human rights. I pity the beautiful island of Srilanka which has now been a criminal field of carnage and butchery and savagery. Day after day, the Srilankan Government since the days of its Independence been guilty of discrimination against Tamils as a class and the fuel for this fury and extremism and terrorism by the LTTE was the terrible discrimination in many dimensions against the Tamil Minority. Full Report Courtesy:TamilNational.com
  5. எனக்கு புரியவில்லை.... ஈழத் தமிழர்களை காப்பாற்றுவோம் என்கிறார்கள்; ஆனால் ஈழத்து தமிழ் மக்கள் மீதும் எமது குழந்தைகள் மீதும் தூவப்படும் மரண குண்டுகளில் அவர்கள் பெயர்களைப் பொறித்து அனுப்பியிருக்கிறார்கள். பிணங்களை காப்பாற்றி ஈழத்தில் எதை சாதிக்கப் போகிறார்கள்?{ பிணந்தின்னிக் கழுகுகளின் இரையே பிணங்கள் தான் என்பதை மறந்துவிட்டு என்ன இது முட்டாள் தனமான கேள்வி?} மரமேறி விழுந்தவனை மாடேறி மிதிச்சுதாம். அப்பிடி இருக்கு இந்திய அரசின் ஒப்பனை வசனங்கள். ஒரு பக்கம் அம்மா வயதான ஐயாவுக்கு கடிதம் எழுதுகிறாராம் தீர்வு காணவும் போரை நிறுத்தவும் வலியுறுத்துவோம் என்று... இன்னொரு பக்கம் நச்சு வாயுவையும், எரி குண்டுகளையும் எதிர்க்கு பரிசளிப்பாராம். பார்த்துக் கொண்டிருக்கும் வெளி உலகில் மனித மூளை சுமந்து இரத்தம் ஓடும் நரம்புகளால் பின்னப்பட்ட இரு கை கால் பிறப்புகள் அப்படியே நம்பிவிடுமாக்கும்... கை கொட்டி சிரிக்க வருகிறது....விரக்தியின் விளிம்பில் சிரிக்கத் தானே முடியும்??? அவர் வயோதிபர் ;அரசியல்வாதி;அவருக்கு குடும்பம் இருக்கிறது; நாம் யார் அவருக்கு?? அவரால் என்ன செய்ய முடியும்? அவரை நம்பியா எமக்கு சுதந்திரம் வேண்டி போராட்டத்தை தொடக்கினோம் அல்லது போராட்டத்தை ஆதரித்தோம்? நாம் தானே எமக்கான போராட்டத்தை தொடக்கினோம்? நாங்கள் தானே எங்கள் பிள்ளைகளையும், சகோதரர்களையும் போராளிகளாக்கினோம்? வளர்த்தோம்?போராளிகள் என்பவர்கள் என்ன வேற்றுக்கிரகத்தில் இருந்தா வந்தார்கள்? அவர்களை பெற்றவர்களும் ஈழத் தமிழர்கள் தான். அவர்களை போராடச் சொன்னவர்களும், அவர்களுடைய போராட்டத்துக்கு வழியமைத்துக் கொடுத்தவர்களும், அவர்களை வளர்த்தவர்களும் ஈழத் தமிழர்களாகிய நாங்கள் தான். எங்களுக்கான விடியலுக்கு நாங்கள் எங்களை காக்க எங்களுக்காக எங்களால் உருவாக்கப்பட்டவர்கள் தான் போராளிகள். அவர்கள் மட்டும் எமக்குப் போதும் .. அவர்களோடு எமது எதிர்காலம் இருக்கட்டும்; இல்லையேல் அவர்களோடு சேர்ந்து செத்து மடியலாம்.... ஈழத்தமிழராகவே செத்து மடியலாம்..என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது இனிமேல் இத்தனை நாள் நடந்ததை விட பெரிதாக...?? ஒருவர் ஈழத்தமிழருக்காக சாகும் வரை உண்ணாவிரதமிருப்பேன் என்பார்; இரண்டு நாளில் அதைக் காலவரையற்ற உண்ணாவிரதமாக்குவார்; இன்னும் இரண்டு நாளில் பலரின் வேண்டுகோளுக்காக உண்ணாவிரதத்தை முடித்தேன் என்பார். அதையும் மௌனமாகப் பார்த்துக் கொண்டிருப்பதை தவிர ஈழத்தமிழனால் என்ன செய்ய முடியும்?? இன்னொருவர் உதவுவதாக அரசியல் கூத்துக் கட்டின போது அவரது முதலைக் கண்ணீரை நம்பியதும் எமது தவறு தான். அவர் உதவவில்லை என்றதும் அவரை தூற்றினாலும் நமது தவறு தான். இந்த தவறுகளை நாம் இன்னொரு தடவை செய்யாதிருக்க முயற்சிக்கலாம் , எங்கள் போராட்டத்தையும் உயிர் அவலங்களையும் இவர்களும் கையிலெடுத்து அரசியல் செய்யாமலிருக்கட்டும்....! எங்களை வைத்து உடன்பிறப்புகளுக்கு கவிதை எழுதுவது எப்படி என்று புளுகாமல் இருக்கட்டும். எங்கள் அவலங்களும் மரண ஓலங்களையும் வைத்து தேர்தலில் வாக்குக் கேட்காமல் இருக்கட்டும்.. இழந்து போகும் மவுசை திரும்ப தேரில் ஏற்ற எந்த அரசியல்வாதியும் ஈழத் தமிழன் என்ற வார்த்தையை உச்சரிக்காமல் இருக்கட்டும். அட விடுங்கப்பா...யாருமே உதவவில்லையென்றே தீர்மானித்துவிட்டோம்... உதவப் போவதில்லை என்பதும் தெரியும்...நாங்கள் என்ன எங்கள் போரளிகளுக்காக ஆயுதம் கேட்டோமா? இல்லையே... !! எங்கள் சுதந்திரத்துக்காக நாங்கள் போராடுகிறோம்...எங்கள் வழியில் தடைக்கல்லாக ஏன் நிற்கிறீர்கள் என்று தானே ஆரம்பத்திலிருந்து இந்தக் கணம் வரை கேட்கிறோம்....?? அட போங்கப்பா....யாருமே உதவவில்லையென்றால் ...என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக...அங்கு? துடிக்க துடிக்க மரணத்தை ஒவ்வொரு வினாடியும் ஒவ்வொருவராக வீழ்ந்து சாவைத் தழுவப் போகிறீர்கள்..அவ்வளவு தானே?? சாவுங்கள்...செத்து போங்கள்... ஈழத்தமிழர்களாகவே செத்துத் தொலையுங்கள்... உங்கள் சாவு வீடுகளால் இன்னொரு தேசத்தின் இறையாண்மையை காப்பாற்றிய பெருமை உங்களுக்குக் கிடைக்கட்டும்... செத்துத் தொலையுங்கள் ஈழத்தமிழராகவே....என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது....பெரிதாக...? அங்கு சாவது யார் ...? திரைப்பட நடிகர்களா அல்லது பெரிய பெரிய அரசியல்வாதிகளா? வெறும் ஈழத் தமிழன் தானே?? உங்களுடைய உயிருக்கு என்ன மதிப்பிருக்கிறது? அற்ப உயிர்கள் தானே? பைசா பெறுமா உங்கள் உயிர்?? நீங்கள் உயிரோடு இருந்து என்ன சாதித்துவிடப் போகிறீர்கள்...?? தேர்தல் காலங்களில் ஓட்டு வாங்க உதவலாம் உங்கள் செத்தவீடுகள்.... போய் செத்து தொலையுங்கள்....ஈழத்து தமிழராகவே செத்து தொலையுங்கள்... என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக....?? மனுசனாய் பிறந்தால் எண்டைக்கோ ஒரு நாள் சாக வேண்டிய விதி தானே? எல்லாரும் ஒன்றாய் செத்து தொலையுங்கோ.. ஈழத் தமிழராகவே செத்துத் தொலையுங்கள்...பெருமையுடன்...! . ஒரு வகையில் நிம்மதியடையலாம் சாகும் போது குடும்பத்தோடு சாகிறீர்களே என்று. ஒரு வகையில் பெருமைப்படலாம் பிறந்த மண்ணில் ஈனர்களுக்கு பணியாமல் சுரணையுள்ள தமிழராய் சாகிறீர்களே என்று. ஒரு வகையில் பெருமையாக சாகலாம்... உங்கள் உரிமைகளை பிளாஸ்டிக் குடங்களோ, சில நூறுத் தாள்களோ விலை பேசாமல் சுயமான உணர்வுடன் சாகிறீர்கள் என்று...ஒரு வகையில் பிராத்தனையுடன் சாகலாம் இன்னொரு பிறப்பிலும் ஈழத்தமிழனாய் பிறந்து மடிய வேண்டும் என்று. ...! ஏன் என்றால் உலகில் தனது இனத்தின் சுதந்திரத்துக்காக இத்தனை போராடியவனும், எத்திக்கிலிருந்தும் எந்த பிரதியுபகாரமும், உதவியும் கிடைக்காது அகதியாய் போனவனும் , சர்வதேசத்தால் மனிதாபிமானம் அற்று கைவிடப்பட்டவனும் ஆனால் கடைசி மூச்சு வரை தனி நாட்டின் மகத்துவத்தை முற்றிலும் சரியான புரிந்துணர்வோடு இருப்பவனுமானவன் அல்லவா அந்த தேசத்திலேயே கிடந்து மடியும் ஈழத்தமிழன்? அப்படி ஒரு ஈழத்தமிழனாய் இருப்பது பெருமைக்குரியது, எல்லாவற்றையும் விட...செத்து தொலையுங்கள் ஈழத்தமிழராகவே... என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக...?? என் தேசத்தில் இந்தக் கணம் மரணத்தை சுவாசிக்கும் என்னருமை சோதரங்களே... உங்களுக்காக புலம் பெயர்ந்த எமது கண்களில் இனிமேல் கண்ணீர் வராது. மாறாக உங்கள் ஒவ்வொருவருடைய மரணமும் எமது மனதில் வேரோடிப் போகும். எந்தவொரு பசப்பு வார்த்தைகளாலும் இனிமேல் ஏமாறமாட்டோம்.. இனியொரு உண்ணாவிரத நாடகத்தையோ , மனிதச் சங்கிலியையோ அல்லது இன்னொரு கவிதையையோ பார்த்து நம்பிக்கையோடு வாய் பார்த்து ஏமாற மாட்டோம்..! யாராவது அல்லது எந்த தேசமாவது உங்களைக் காப்பாற்ற வருவார்கள் என்று நம்பி ஏமாற மாட்டோம்...உங்களுக்கு நாங்களும், எங்களுக்கு நீங்களும் மட்டும் தான்...! உங்களுக்காக எங்களது உயிரை சருகாக்கி , தெம்பிருக்கும் வரை எந்த வழியிலும் நாம் போராடுவோம்...! புலம் பெயர்ந்த இடத்திலிருந்தே உங்களை எப்படியாவது காப்போம்.. இல்லையேல்.... பரவாயில்லை செத்துத் தொலையுங்கள்... ஈழத்தமிழர்களாகவே....செத்துப் போங்கள்....என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக...?? வாழ வேண்டும், வாழப் போகும் வாழ்கையை சுதந்திரமாக வாழ வேண்டும்; அகதியாயும் அடிமையாயும் வாழ்வைதை விட நாம் எல்லோருமே செத்துப் தொலைந்து போய்விடலாம்..ஈழத்தமிழராகவே..... என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக...?? உலகம் ஏதாவது செய்யும், எமது மரணம் எதையாவது செய்ய இவர்களை தூண்டும் என்று முட்டாள்தனமாக நம்பி தம்மைத் தாமே தீக்கிரையாக்கின முத்துகுமார்களுடன் சேர்ந்து நாமும் செத்து தொலைஞ்சு போய்விடலாம்... ஈழத்தமிழராகவே...என்ன நடந்துவிடப் போகிறது பெரிதாக...? இனி எவரும் ஈழத்தமிழனுக்காக அழ வேண்டாம்; அவன் மானத்துடன் செத்துப் போகிறான்... அவனுக்காக நீலிக் கண்ணீரோ, போலி மாரடிப்போ வேண்டாம். எங்கள் சாவிலாவது நீங்கள் உங்கள் சாலங்களை புறந்தள்ளி வையுங்கள் அரசியல்வாதிகளே!!! நன்றி! வணக்கம்! அன்புடன் சுவாதி சாவு நெருங்கி வரும் போதும் - தமிழ் மானம் காத்திரடி பாப்பா!! [மின் அஞ்சல் மூலம் பெறபட்டது]
  6. Sri Lanka civilians caught in conflict lack access to safe drinking water: UN In Sri Lanka, conflict continues in the No Fire Zone, and unconfirmed reports suggest significantly increased casualties, including hundreds of injuries Wednesday and Thursday alone. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs - OCHA says more than 60,000 persons have come out of the Vanni over the past five months. Full Report with Voice Worsening humanitarian situation in conflict zone - General Ban Ki-moon Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa today discussed the deteriorating humanitarian situation in the north of the island nation, where thousands of civilians are trapped by fighting between the Government and Tamil rebels, agreeing to continue working together in the coming days. Full Report from UN
  7. In an exclusive interview to Headlines Today, LTTE political head B. Nadesan has endorsed the position taken by the AIADMK-led alliance in Tamil Nadu on the Sri Lankan Tamils' Issue. AIADMK leader J. Jeyalalithaa has been one of the staunchest critics of the Tamil Tiger rebels in the state and the LTTE has so far rarely made any direct comment about her. Breaking convention, Nadesan praised Jeyalalithaa's recent statements on the situation in Sri Lanka. "Leaders of ADMK alliance are very much involved in the recent upsurge in Tamil Nadu towards our people. ADMK's founder, the legendary leader M.G.R, steadfastly supported the well-being and the political quest for self-determination of Eelam Tamils at all times. Jeyalalithaa has given voice to the Tamil people and she understands the Tamil people's political aspirations very well. Interestingly, she has discussed a solution based on the principle of self-determination in one of the recent statements. It is an encouraging development," Nadesan said. Jeyalalithaa's allies, like long-time LTTE supporter MDMK chief Vaiko, PMK's S. Ramadoss and Left leaders from the state too came in for praise. Nadesan hopes MPs elected from Tamil Nadu would help change New Delhi's policy with regard to the conflict in Sri Lanka. "We are generally expecting the new government will review the present policy towards the conflict and Tamil aspirations with new realities. And I expect that elected representatives from Tamil Nadu will play an effective role in the re-shaping process," he said. DMK failed Asked about the DMK, Nadesan said the party had failed to bring relief to the Tamil civilians in Sri Lanka. "I can only say, the relief has not reached our people. The Tamil people are fighting against Sinhala armed forces and struggling against hunger and disease on the other hand. I believe that the DMK and the other political leaders of Tamil Nadu are fully aware of this situation," he added. Nadesan's comments are significant as the worsening humanitarian situation in Sri Lanka and the Sri Lankan army's offensive in the country have become major electoral issues in the state. Vaiko's threat Meanwhile, Vaiko and Ramadoss and their Left allies have intensified their protests in Tamil Nadu ahead of the elections. This is a key electoral issue in the state and Vaiko's poll campaign is centered around it. "The Tigers are fighting the Sri Lankan army. Here the hearts of Tamils is like a volcano. People have forgotten Sriperumbudur a long time ago. Prabhakaran is in the hearts of the people of Tamil Nadu. If something happens to him, there will be bloodshed in the state. Your police force cannot do anything about it," Vaiko thundered at a protest rally in Chennai. Vaiko has been arrested in the past for making such speeches. But the DMK government has shied away from taking action against him in recent months. Courtesy: TamilNational.com
  8. From my seat in the Telegraph's Westminster hutch, I can look out over Parliament Square to the spot where several thousand British Tamils are now into their third day of protest over the Sri Lankan government's offensive against the Tamil Tigers. For three days, varying numbers of Tamils have been out there, banging drums, blowing horns, chanting and singing. They're accompanied by scores of police who have effectively surrounded them. Now, you can say a lot of bad things about this protest. The police say it's illegal, because it wasn't authorised in advance. London travellers, me included, could complain about the traffic disruption caused on the first day when the Tamils blocked Westminster Bridge. And the few lonely souls here at the Commons during the recess might gripe about the noise. But actually, the longer they're out there, the more I'm liking them. As far as I can see, they're an affable enough bunch: men, women and children, few if any of whom seem interested in confronting the police or doing anything. Whatever noise they make is less intrusive and irritating than the usual band of hysterical Trotskyites and political onanists who normally abuse their megaphones in my general direction the rest of the year. And they're clearly committed: this is Day 3 and there are once again a couple of thousand people present. To be honest, I'm not quite sure what they want or what they think they're going to acheive. But as long as they want to stay out there, they'll have my admiration simply for sticking it out. Good luck guys. See you tomorrow? Comments: http://tamilnational.com/worlds-view/artic...ish-tamils.html
  9. தமிழ் ஈழ மக்கள் சார்பில் எமது வீர வணக்கங்கள் மோகன் அண்ணாவுக்கும் குடும்பத்தாருக்கும் ஆழ்ந்த அனுதாபங்கள்
  10. The ship 'Vananka mun' on a mercy mission to Vanni with 500 Tons of food and medicine will be leaving the British shores today. A team of Doctors will join the mission from the last port before Mullaitheevu. MIA ( Maya Arulpragasam) has sent her blessing to the mercy mission to Vanni. In her letter she has said "if the aim of the SL Government is to protect the lives of the civilians, then this ship will reach its destination and lives will be saved." Here is her full statement: I just had a baby last month, that's why I can't be there today, but I want to give my support and thanks to the launch of the chartered humanitarian ship Mercy Mission launching March 31, 2009. I made it out in the late 80's and so my baby is going to grow up with hospitals, healthcare, food, free education, freedom of speech and religion, a life expectancy of 80-90 years and many of the liberties that we in democratic world take for granted. A baby born in the Vanni Region today is getting no access to hospitals (they bombed the last one and it's run out of supplies.) There is limited food because the government banned the aid agencies and there is no education because the trapped civilians only have one option and that is to make it to the government-run internment camps where they only enforce the language and ideas of the government. The Tamils have less rights than the animals in Sri Lanka. The Mercy Mission will carry dry food and medicines for Tamil civilians in Vanni within the Sri Lankan Government’s “safe zone." Many have already perished from starvation and preventable disease. We can not ignore these genocidal conditions, and if the aim of the SL Government is to protect the lives of the civilians, then this ship will reach its destination and lives will be saved. Thank you very much, Maya Arulpragasam (MIA) Courtesy:TamilNational.com
  11. Act Now, Tamil Health Organisation (THO), Tamil Aid, White Pigeon, Technical Association of Tamils (TAOT) and The Tamil Support Foundation (TTSF), TSSA, Hindu Temples and Churches are preparing to send more than 500 tons of food, medicine and medical teams to help the civilians in the Vanni affected by the ongoing war in Sri Lanka. This mission aims to provide desperately needed medical supplies for thousands of sick and injured people, and raise awareness of the suffering of the civilians in the conflict zone.

 Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in a statement on 13 March 2009 stated that bombing and shelling by the Sri Lanka Armed Forces in the so called ‘safe zone’ has killed 2,800 Tamil civilians and left 7,000 more injured since the beginning of 2009. The UN and international humanitarian agencies have been denied access to the region since September 2008, leaving many without adequate food, water or medical assistance. 16 persons have recently died of starvation and more than 10 babies have died from diarrhea.

 Dr T. Varatharajah, a senior Sri Lankan health official in the region where the conflict is taking place, says that the last major medical facility in the ‘Safe Zone’ territory has almost stopped functioning due to a medicine shortage. 

The mission will deliver a wide range of medicines, from pain-killers, antibiotics and anaesthetic drugs and food supplies to the civilians being denied humanitarian assistance in northern Sri Lanka, where a quarter of a million people are trapped by the fighting. A professional medical team hopes to join the mission at the last port and travel to the shores of Mullaitivu. The supplies have been donated at various collection centres throughout London and from other British cities, and the trip is being funded by the generosity of British supporters and others throughout the world.

 The Vanni Mission ship will bring life saving supplies into the region, but our work doesn’t stop there, we will continue to call attention to the situation in Sri Lanka until this war against its own civilians is stopped?” Full Report Courtesy:TamilNational.com
  12. British parliament debated on Sri Lanka on Tuesday at Westminster Hall for one and half hours. This is the fourth debate on Sri Lanka in recent times. Member for Mitcham and Morden, Siobhain McDonagh secured the time for the debate and lead the debate. The salient feature of the debate is, irrespective of party differences members across the bench were critical on Sri Lankan government for its ignorance on humanitarian crisis and the refusal to accept Tamil grievances. At the debate, parliament members expressed the frustration of Tamil Diaspora and the inability of the international community to bring a redress to them. Siobhain McDonagh asked, ‘what are we saying to those young people if the British political system cannot take their concerns on board and democracy cannot work for them, as it does for other groups in our society?’ She was also critical on the international media for its poor coverage on Sri Lanka. She was referring to a British media and asked ‘what is going on with a paper’s sense of proportion when it prints stories about flags, but not about thousands of people being killed or displaced every month?’. She further lamented Amnesty is right to say that this is a conflict without witnesses, and it is our role, as Members of Parliament, to provide a testimony. John Ryan reflected the same comment in her speech. Most members agreed SL government’s publicity machine is working very well to cover up what’s going on in SL. According to Siobhain McDonagh, the purpose of the debate is to call on the British Government to exert all diplomatic efforts into ending the conflict. If the Sri Lankan Government is not willing to end the conflict, she proposed British Government to call for their suspension from the Commonwealth. The members emphasized on two actions against Sri Lanka; suspending Sri Lanka from Commonwealth and taking the issue to UN Security Council. Full Report
  13. UN Reports from India - Tamil National High Commissioner for UNHRC is in India on an official visit; Ms Navanetham Pillai raised the Sri Lankan issue during her discussion today with the Indian external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee. Commenting on Sri Lanka to the reporters, she said ‘I have asked the Sri Lankan government to allow human rights monitors there. I have not got any response. I am going to press for that.’ She further said, ‘our view is that you can never succeed through military solution, the problem can be solved politically. UN wants Sri Lankan government to ensure safety of the civilians.’ More to this, today Human Rights Council concluded the general debates on human rights situations that require the council’s attention. At the debate, it listened from a series of non-governmental organizations about violations of human rights in countries around the world. Karen Parker, of International Educational Development, said the lack of attention given to the situation in Zimbabwe left the international community to help prevent mass starvation. In Sri Lanka, the Tamils had been suffering in the country since 1948. In February 2009 at the invitation of the United States Senate, the speaker had made a statement on Sri Lanka. There was now support by Senators to address the need for humanitarian assistance for the Tamils, and that they not be driven by Sri Lankan authorities into concentration camps. The Council could not afford to abate genocide. The Council was urged to hold a special session in this regard. Gotzon Onandia-Zarrabe, of Franciscans International, in a joint statement with Pax Romana, said the situation in Sri Lanka continued to deteriorate, and the number of victims was increasing. According to local sources, the condition of civilians in Vanni was desperate. The Human Rights Council should hold a special session on Sri Lanka. Yasantha Kodagoda, Representative of Sri Lanka, speaking in a right of reply, said the speaker for International Educational Development had continued to utter complete falsehoods regarding the prevailing situation in Sri Lanka - this organization only supported the LTTE, which was now going through its final round of terrorism. The LTTE lobbying was not uncommon at the Council. The situation in Sri Lanka, as clearly observed by the United Nations coordinator on humanitarian affairs, was an exceptional one. There was no genocidal situation - the Government was engaged in a legitimate humanitarian and military operation aimed at liberating its own people from LTTE terrorists, who did not even spare the people they falsely claimed to represent, and were abusing the humanitarian gestures of the Government. It had positioned itself inside the no-fire zone that was observed by the Government of Sri Lanka and was attacking the security forces who were fast approaching the shrinking territory. The LTTE was using people as a human shield. Sir John Holmes had personally visited the villages being administered by the Government, in which persons were being sheltered and ensured decent conditions of living. It was a complete falsehood to refer to these shelters as detention camps
  14. Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara had pinned his statement of faith to a map used to brief journalists visiting Sri Lanka: "It's the soldier, not the reporter, who has given us the freedom of the press," it began. It went on to say the soldier, not politicians, "ensures our right to Life, Freedom and the Pursuit of Happiness". I was recently in Sri Lanka to report on the final stages of a civil war that has been raging for a quarter of a century. As I write, 200,000 civilians are caught between the Sri Lankan army and the Tamil Tigers. Unfortunately, it became a story about the difficulty of reporting at all and, in the case of local journalists, about its perils. For the foreign correspondent, everything in Sri Lanka begins and ends with the armed forces: where one can travel; what one can film; even to whom one can speak. And dealing with the military is like travelling through the looking glass, although a blunter analogy would be with George Orwell's 1984. They lie brazenly and the lies aren't even credible. The UN may tell you that at least 2000 civilians have been killed in fighting since January, but Sri Lanka's Secretary of Defence, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, says there are none. Absolutely none. "If you want to believe me, believe me, no civilian casualties. "We have taken all the precautions to avoid civilian casualties ... The world has to appreciate this, if somebody doesn't appreciate this -- bad luck," he told me. When I arrived in Colombo I knew it would be impossible to access the battleground, but I hadn't appreciated how much of the country had become a no-go zone for journalists. Without special permission from the Ministry of Defence, you can't even visit Vavuniya, a town in the north where civilians fleeing the conflict are being brought and which has never been in rebel hands. The army also told me I couldn't visit wounded civilians in the eastern town of Trincomalee, "because that's the way we want it. Simple answer." A visiting crew from Al Jazeera complained about travelling around Sri Lanka only to film soldiers putting their hands over the camera lens. Eventually, the army invited about 50 frustrated reporters on a day trip to one of the "welfare villages" where displaced Tamil civilians are being settled outside Vavuniya. Although it's surrounded by razor wire and soldiers prevent anyone from entering or leaving, the army would have you believe that no one is actually being detained. We were told we could wander freely and speak to whomever we liked. But soldiers wandered with us and some people said they'd been instructed not to speak to the foreigners. I did get permission to travel to Jaffna after I told the Defence Secretary I wanted to interview a government minister there. In addition to a permit from the Ministry of Defence, I required authorisation for every piece of equipment I carried, right down to my AA batteries. It takes a full day to get there -- an hour's flying time and a seven-hour security nightmare. Air force personnel search every passenger and tear apart every piece of luggage. They were particularly suspicious of my swimming goggles. I was interviewed and photographed by what appeared to be military intelligence. I arrived in Jaffna on a bus with curtains drawn across the windows -- and was reprimanded for peeking. But if it's difficult to report in Sri Lanka as a foreigner, it can be deadly for the locals -- especially if you're brave enough to criticise, or even question the armed forces. One of Sri Lanka's best-known newspaper editors, Lasantha Wickrematunga (who had permanent residency in Australia), was gunned down on his way to work earlier this year. Before his assassination he wrote a remarkable editorial predicting his own death, "Countless journalists have been harassed, threatened and killed. It has been my honour to belong to all these categories, and now especially the last." In Jaffna, I filmed two Tamil journalists who've lived in their newspaper's office since armed gunmen attacked it in May, 2006. Two of their staff were killed. They know their own lives are at risk if they venture out. Jaffna itself, which is itself under strict military curfew, is described as an open prison; so, as one of the office-bound journalists explained: "We are within another prison." Their editor, Vithyatharan, is one of Sri Lanka's most prominent Tamil journalists. Nine of his staff have been killed in the past three years, but he does his best to protect those who remain. None of the articles in his newspapers carry a byline -- if the police or army ask him who wrote a particular article he confesses: "I did. I wrote them all. I take full responsibility." When the boys delivering his papers were beaten up he hired old men in the hope that they would be safer. But Vithyatharan himself was abducted in Colombo last month, just a day after I filmed him. After being whisked away in a white van his family was relieved when he turned up alive and in police custody a few hours later. But this respected journalist has now been accused of co-ordinating the recent plane attacks on the capital. When I asked the Defence Secretary whether the army should be immune from criticism he explained, "Of course, why should you criticise when you're engaged in a justifiable war that has popular support?" Media freedom, he insisted, was an indulgence Sri Lanka could ill afford, "You have no love for this country ... but Sri Lankan journalists ... should act responsibly because it is our country. Protecting the country is much more important, not these two words -- 'free media'." Amos Roberts is a reporter on SBS's Dateline. His story from Sri Lanka can be found at www.sbs.com.au/dateline Courtesy:TheAustrlian:http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/business/story/0,,25225634-7582,00.html
  15. Inner City Press journalist Matthew Russell Lee who regularly attends United Nation’s press conferences in New York today revealed in a news article in his website that the “minimum number of documented civilian casualties since 20 January 2009, as of 7 March in the conflict area of Mullaitivu Region is 9,924 casualties including 2,683 deaths and 7,241 injuries. He published a leaked document of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs of the UN and said that after claiming “we don’t count bodies,” the UN has now involuntarily admitted, the documented civilian casualties. “Now it appears that unlike in other conflicts from Darfur to Gaza, the UN withheld the Sri Lanka figures, in effect protecting the Sri Lankan government from criticism,” the Inner City Press reported. More NEWS