Ilankai Tamil Sangam

24th Year on the Web

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

UN Human Rights Council Submission

To general debate on item 9

by International Education Development, June 2011

The plight of the Tamils in Sri Lanka  is the clearest example of the failure of the United Nations system to come to the aid of a people beseiged on the basis of ethnicity and race.

Karen Parker IED Humanitarian Law 2007International Educational Development has for many years drawn to the attention of the Council the issue of ethnic conflicts, many of which invoke Protocol Additional I to the Geneva Conventions, and qualify as armed conflicts against racist regimes. We have also cited former Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who stated that any time there is an ethnic conflict, the international community must be alerted to the possibility of génocide, the most extrême form of racism.

 Mr. Mladic is now brought to The Hague, to be tried for génocide and racist crimes. Nonetheless, the Advisory Panel appointed by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to make recommendations following the end of the war in Sri Lanka chides the United Nations as a whole for failing to live up to its responsibilities to the Tamil people and recommends a comprehansive review its «humanitarian and protection mandates.»

The plight of the Tamils in Sri Lanka  is the clearest example of the failure of the United Nations system to come to the aid of a people beseiged on the basis of ethnicity and race. We submitted numerous urgent action appeals and documentation over many years to successive mandate holders on racism and the prévention of génocide and mass atrocities to no avail. Surely when former President Bill Clinton was denied accèss to the Tamil areas after the Tsunami the international community should have known something was amiss? Recently The Elders, founded by Nelson Mandela, referred to the «deafening silence» of the international community regarding the Tamils.

We urge the Council to heed the call of the Advisory Panel and undertake measures to ensure that what the Advisory Panel calls «carnage» of the Tamils never again occurs to any people.