[foil] TODAY: Action and Vigil for a Just Peace in Sri Lanka, Feb 17
rr6 at columbia.edu
Fri Feb 17 12:15:18 CST 2006
The demands of the group organizing the action and vigil (reproduced
below) are very worthy of support; I plan to attend.
But I am puzzled that the group takes no position on the issues that
triggered the civil war twenty years back - official discrimination against
Tamils and the Tamil language, and government-supported violence
against Tamils. There is only a passing reference to "minority rights."
As you know, the "left" parties in Lanka supported the more rabid
Sinhala party in the last election. It is unfortunate that an independent
group ignores the basic issues as well.
Surely, a clear indication of the Lankan government's commitment to a
resolution of the conflict will be the removal of legally sanctioned
discrimination. Without even that basic step, talks can go on for ever.
It is not enough for indpendent groups to call for an end to violence in
Lanka, any more than in Kashmir or in Palestine. You should demand
that the government should change its policies.
On 17 Feb 2006 at 9:27, Kitana A wrote:
> The group calls for the following:
> - An immediate end to political and extrajudicial
> killings, abductions, rape, torture, arbitrary arrests,
> and all actions of violence against civilians;
> - An immediate end to all forms of child recruitment and
> a commitment to release all child soldiers;
> - An immediate end to violence against women and the use
> and exploitation of women in wartime;
> - An immediate commitment to respect civil society
> including the safeguarding of minority rights, protection
> of displaced peoples, women's rights, economic rights and
> freedom of expression and association;
> - An immediate end to all acts of violence directed at
> one another and a commitment to a peaceful political
> process to resolve the conflict.
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