Ilankai Tamil Sangam

24th Year on the Web

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

Days of Remembrance

Tamils Remember, One Year On

by Canadian Tamil Congress,

In honour of those who died, we urge community members to take care of those who survived. The war left many of our brothers and sisters in Eelam devastated. Children have been orphaned, families have lost their breadwinners and countless others have been left without eyes, legs, and arms. Many are now struggling to feed their families or find places to sleep. That is why it is our duty to do what we can to help these families get back on their feet. These are the people who are members of the Tamil nation and while we remember those who have passed, we must help save and ensure those who survive can thrive.

The Canadian Tamil Congress (CTC) urges Tamils across Canada to observe Days of Remembrance from May 17 to 19 to remember the tens of thousands killed in the last stages of the war on the island of Sri Lanka. The three days mark the final stages of the armed war when crimes against humanity were committed and large scale massacres took place. Sri Lanka repeatedly violated international law by bombing the no-fire zone and hospitals in traditional Tamil lands. Community members are urged to wear red ribbons in to mark the bloodshed and the war crimes committed. CTC urges Tamils to conduct prayer services at their faith-facilities and homes and/or to continue to voice for justice for those who have died and those who continue to live in Eelam under the rule of a draconian government.  

Tamils around the world are united by grief for the tens of thousands who died in the last phase of the conflict as victims of war crimes. As the anniversary of the war’s end approaches, Tamils must continuously appeal to the international community to not let the victims of this conflict be forgotten and not to look away when war crimes have been committed but to take action and hold those who continually flaunt international laws and democratic norms accountable.  

Right after the war, a Times of London investigation revealed more than 20,000 Tamil civilians were killed in the latter stages of the war mostly due to government shelling. Most recently, former UN official Gordon Weiss claimed that up to 40,000 civilians may have been killed in the latter stages of the war. This statement was in stark contradiction to claims from Sri Lankan government officials that no civilian had been killed.  

In honour of those who died, we urge community members to take care of those who survived. The war left many of our brothers and sisters in Eelam devastated. Children have been orphaned, families have lost their breadwinners and countless others have been left without eyes, legs, and arms. Many are now struggling to feed their families or find places to sleep. That is why it is our duty to do what we can to help these families get back on their feet. These are the people who are members of the Tamil nation and while we remember those who have passed, we must help save and ensure those who survive can thrive. CTC’s “Connecting Families” project will be an avenue for Tamil families in Canada to ‘adopt’ and directly help families or individuals in Sri Lanka devastated by the war. No funds will come to CTC and Canadian families can determine the need and help as needed.  

To sponsor a family or to get red ribbons for your family, friends, organization, contact CTC at 416.240.0078.