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The Chief Minister of the Northern Province – C V Wigneswaran
The Chief Minister of the Northern Province – C V Wigneswaran

‘May 18, 2009 – an unforgettable day in Tamil history’

‘Everyone must join the fight for justice’ – C V Wigneswaran

The Chief Minister of the Northern Province renewed calls for justice for the lives lost in the massacres of 2009 and urged the international community to ensure accountability is delivered, in a speech given at Mullivaikkal earlier today.

Justice Wigneswaran reflected on the number of lives lost in those final months, noting that Bishop Rayappu Joseph’s figure of 146,679 Tamils missing remains unaccounted for.

“Every week, people who have lost their families, relatives of persons whose family members are missing, people injured in war, people who are crippled by war, people who have lost vision, orphaned young ones, who have lost their dear parents and housewives who head their families are coming to meet me,” said the chief minister.

“All of them want justice.”

The chief minister also spoke on a UN Human Rights Council resolution passed last year, stating that “I welcomed the resolution, but at the same time, I also appealed to the international community to move cautiously, keeping in mind the welfare of our people”.

“I also pointed out that those who conduct the cases at the domestic courts would never ensure that justice would be administered to our afflicted people,” continued the chief minister. “I stressed the need for engaging international lawyers to conduct the cases. Since one cannot expect justice from domestic judiciary, I also emphasised the need to appoint international judges to come to appropriate conclusions.”

Speaking on his engagement with the international community Justice Wigneswaran said some states had appealed to the Tamil people to “forget war crimes in lieu of a federal government promise in return”.

“If they had taken cognisance of the losses and the sufferings of our people affected by the war, they would not have made such an uncivilized demand,” he continued, adding that “everyone should come forward to fight for justice”.

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The Northern Provincial Council (NPC) will be observing May 18th as a “tragic day in the history of Tamils” and plans to hold a remembrance event at Mullivaikkal on Wednesday.

A statement released by the NPC said the date was “unforgettable… tossing away all international laws of war”.

In remembrance of those killed, a memorial event will be held at Mullivaikkal beach, the site of the massacres as Sri Lankan troops overran a narrow strip of land where hundreds of thousands of Tamils had gathered in May 2009.

Events have already taken place across the Tamil North-East marking Mullivaikkal remembrance week and remembering the victims of Tamil genocide.

Tamils mourn 7 years after 2009

NPC Councillor T Ravikaran pays his respects at the Nandikadal Lagoon
NPC Councillor T Ravikaran pays his respects at the Nandikadal Lagoon

Marking the massacre of tens of thousands of Tamils at the end of the armed conflict in Sri Lanka in May 2009, Tamils across the world and in all districts of the Tamil homeland in the North-East are coming together in commemoration.

May 18 memorial at Jaffna University
May 18 memorial at Jaffna University

Remembrance events are taking place across the North-East amid surveillance by Sri Lankan intelligence and police officers and warnings by government officials not to commemorate the LTTE

At Mullivaikkal this morning
At Mullivaikkal this morning ( May 18, 2016)

Local sources told the Tamil Guardian that there was an increased military presence in many areas of the North-East, including at Jaffna University on the A35 towards Mullaithivu.

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Source: Tamil Guardian

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