Ilankai Tamil Sangam

24th Year on the Web

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

Tamil Americans Welcome President's Statement

by Americans for Peace in Sri Lanka, May 13, 2009

Tamil Americans welcome President Obama’s statement today, bringing much needed attention to the plight of the hundreds of thousands of Tamil civilians in the conflict area and in internment camps in Sri Lanka. The leader of the free world has spoken clearly that the world will not sit idle when carnage of this magnitude goes on in any corner of the world.

We hope that the Sri Lankan government cannot ignore the categorical call of President Obama to stop offensive fire into Tamil civilian areas and to allow immediate humanitarian access to the civilians to take food and medicine. We also welcome yesterday’s statement by the Tamil Tigers publicly committing to a ceasefire and their willingness to negotiate modalities for a safe rehabilitation of the cornered Tamil civilians.

More than 11,000 Tamil civilians have been killed by the Sri Lankan state apparatus within the last 4 months. We repeat our call to President Obama and to the civilized nations of the world to undertake a humanitarian intervention based on the doctrine of “Responsibility to Protect – R2P”, since Sri Lanka has clearly abdicated its responsibilities towards Tamil citizens.

We also urge the Obama administration to bring about a ceasefire and political negotiations to restructure the Sri Lankan state in order to bring lasting peace. The conflict-afflicted Tamils within and outside of Sri Lanka should be allowed to express their aspirations in a UN-sponsored referendum to determine the terms of coexistence of Tamils and Sinhalese in the island.

Elias Jeyarajah, PhD
President
Americans for Peace in Sri Lanka (APSL)