Published on 18 Nov 2013

Sri Lanka: trouble in paradise

Canada was clear – staging a Commonwealth leaders’ summit in Sri Lanka would be a very bad idea. The Canadians argued strongly against it, eventually deciding to boycott it altogether, and threatening a significant withdrawal of funding from the Commonwealth secretariat. After all it was only last March that the Queen signed the Commonwealth charter committing the organisation to respecting human rights; good governance; democracy; and respect for the rule of law. Selecting a country whose government has been in spectacular breach of each of these commitments to host the first summit after the signing of the charter was bound to leave a strong stench of hypocrisy hanging over the affair.

“Is there anyone here with a question about anything other than Sri Lanka and human rights,” asked the exasperated Commonwealth spokesman in desperation. This after two of the big set piece news conferences had been dominated by discussion of war crimes allegations, disappearances, and sexual crimes committed by the country’s military. New Commonwealth commitments made at the summit to set up global youth programmes went by un-remarked.

This turned out to be the worst attended Commonwealth leaders’ summit on record: 25 of the 53 presidents or prime ministers stayed away. There were also very few Commonwealth journalists here to cover the event. The exception was from Britain where all four major television news outlets sent teams who until now had been denied visas to report the aftermath of the country’s civil war. An aftermath in which the armed forces, the president and his brother, the defence minister, stand accused by the UN of massacring some 40,000 of their own people.

Hence the entire summit proved a strange event indeed.

18_sri_Lanka_g_w

Roads, buildings and even the conference centre itself had all been built or refurbished by China, in a headlong dash over the past six months. This must go down as the first event effectively born of the after-burn of the British empire to have been bank-rolled in part by the communist Chinese.

Over it all presided the neo-Episcopal dressed figure of President Mahinder Rajapaksa and his brother, Defence Minister Gotobhaya Rajapaksa. It’s these two men who have been most implicated in the shelling and bombardment of the “no fire zone” they established at the end of the civil war.

After President Rajapaksa broke his own constitution by summarily sacking Sri Lanka’s respected chief justice in January, the Commonwealth Secretary General Kamalesh Sharma had little option but to have the matter investigated – it represented a prima facia reason for moving the summit elsewhere. The investigation lawyers, who included Britain’s Sir Jeffrey Jowell QC, concluded that the matter had been a serious breach of the rule of law. But that advice was never shown to the eight Commonwealth foreign ministers who had to make the final decision as to whether to go ahead with meeting in Sri Lanka.

‘Shine a light’ on allegations

Britain found itself between a rock and a hard place when it came to the decision to attend the meeting. The UK could hardly boycott an event which Prince Charles was to open (the Queen having been stealthily absented from the thing at an early stage in its planning). David Cameron’s alternative was to attend, albeit briefly, and to use the moment to “shine a light” on what he termed the “appalling allegations of human rights abuses and war crimes”. Having seen Channel 4’s film “No Fire Zone”, the prime minister was in no doubt that he needed to challenge the Rajapaksas. And so, it seems, he did.

China’s ascent in Sri Lanka has rendered British influence here much diminished. Nevertheless, Mr Cameron did a brave job, engineering an unprecedented trip to the north of the country – the first by any outside leader since 1948. In so doing he triggered the only images that spoke to Sri Lanka’s still unresolved recent past.

Consequently boycotts, non-attendances and discussions of Sri Lanka’s alleged war crimes – and crimes against humanity – obliterated everything else. Even some of those who did attend, left early. This was, I can testify, a shambles of a meeting. Staff in the Commonwealth secretariat who had seen it all coming, were in despair by the end.

But the Rajapaksas had their day in the sun. Surrounded by whirling dancers, cascades of fruit and trinkets, and ever present poster’s portraying both brothers, they could look forward to flaunting the ensuing photographs of hand-shakes and bowing, to prove their acceptance at the top table of the family of nations. But whether the after-glow of it all will prove enough to overwhelm the furore stirred by the renewed publicity surrounding human rights abuses and alleged war crimes on the island, is very much in doubt.

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110 reader comments

  1. Dharma says:

    Dear Jon

    You too have done a brave job. As for your interview with Muttiah Muralitharan, he had to say “Mr Cameron had been misled” otherwise he will also be eliminated. He is one of the few tamils who had the privilege to play for the Sri Lankan cricket team and he is good at it. But he should have stopped with cricket and should not have spoken for all the tamils living in the island. We tamils have been suffering since independence in the hands of the majority sinhalese.

    1. Pumal Fernando says:

      Dear All,

      Whatever said and done we Srilankans (Sinhalese, Tamils and Muslims) need to live together, so it is the responsibility of everyone to promote peace and harmony to heal all war wounds that happened to all ethnics of the Nation. What C4 and west is doing would not bring any of us anywhere than creating animosity among us. So dear Tamilians don’t misled with anything, think wisely and create a future for your people in peaceful manner. If not I will die and you will die with anger nothing is done for your people.

      Think what is really needed in today’s contest? If you still wants to dig your past then it is the curse of the Nation…..

      1. Humanitarian Worker says:

        Dear Pumal,

        Thank you and I agree to your comments.

        However, I am wondering how you would expect tamils to live as nothing has happened. This is not one single incident or few people. Its something to do with the whole ethnicity. If you and me do not reconcile it in a manner that both can live together, it will not only create a bad example but also provide no guarantee that you will not be in the same situation as of Tamils.

        More than any thing, after all these reports and having accepted by LLRC as “some allegations”, has Sri Lankan government at-least accepted the causalities and the loss of Tamil population. Not a single note on this. Still “Zero casualty”. How do you expect people live with trauma.

        What Srilankan people have done in-country for pressing the government for reconciling the war allegations and disappearances, etc. People are still not prepared to understand the real issue, accept the loss of lives, properties, time, etc.

      2. Ravi says:

        Mr.Fernando, we tamils think its too late.time to time. Singhala state have been committed geocide on tamils.and its continues till this date,in north & east of the island. Tamils have tried to solve it.but cheated by singhala state.now tell us ,do we have room for harmony.

      3. Piranha says:

        Dig the past? Tell that to the many thousands of relatives of those who were massacred by the Sri Lankan military. Without accountability there will never be peace between the tamils and Sinhalese.

      4. puli says:

        We agree!! only singala people live peace!!

      5. Lakneswaran Krishnan says:

        Then you must stop supporting rajapakse. and ask to him what’s happend or what you done and bring truth from him. I never hate Sinhalese peoples. Can you say one sinhalese women raped by LTTE??? LTTE = Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. 30 years + sinhalese said ltte is terrorist. There is diffrence between terrorist and freedom fighter. LTTE start after we choosed Ghandi way. Its not from begin ltte took guns and fight. they have fought for freedom and fought against Apartheid. What singhalese politiek doing with army after war raping, still killing(not tamil peoples only also sinhalese and muslims) you know what’s happend in our land. Nothing… We can not stop till true peace for everyone. We not fighting for only our self we doing also for you. I write not only for you for all… learn history… if i hurt you. i’m sorry

      6. Mahesh says:

        U View is correct… You help them to achieve that but, LTTE at Sri Lanka did not try to achive what you explain. They did not act the freedom fighters episode here. they play it in Canada, UK and in other countries that is why still you are fighting to help them. But, the LTTE lost the credibility and support of some Tamils here also due to that reason. Somehow, as a Sri Lankan I dont like to see them as freedom fighters since they did not show as freedom fighters at Sri Lanka, they act as terrorists. If they were freedom fighters, they will not loose the support of Sinhala and Tamils since Sinhalease also fight for freedom during 1980s……

      7. yaksha deva says:

        I have no hope in the democratic Kingdoms.
        That it self is an oxymoron.
        Colonizers crocodile tears.

        How did you treat Irish ?.
        Racism and divide and conquer should be history.

        I cannot expect a Lion to become a vegetarian.
        Predators are predators.
        They use BBC, channel 4.
        We don’t trust you.
        Mind your own business ,Buy s0me mirrors – use them to look at your self not to dazzle others.

        We have forgiven all the evil you the evil empire has done.
        Now shut up . Stay home and take care of your queen.

      8. anand says:

        Dear Pumal,
        I am a tamil and I agree with you. I also agree that LTTE also did many humun right violations during this war. But my arguement is this:-

        Tamils would have forgiven Rajapaksa if he had finally used his power to give at least a reasonable solution for the ethnic problem in Srilanka and had also stopped all the astrocities against tamils soon after the war had ended.
        Not even any attempt been made to give a solution for the Tamils’ problem yet. Tamils has been still been killed, tortured, disappeared and threatened on daily basis.
        so even the Tamils wisely wanted to forget what happened in the final stages of war, the situation in Sri Lanka will not allow this happening. Everything remains raw as the situation is still same. Just new roads and developements doest heal the problem.

        Tamils who live in North are really tired and almost exhausted of this freedom fight. They might forgive Rajapaksa if he has done the right things atleast from immediately after the war. So it is him who keep reminding Tamils of the past. So what we can do.

      9. Sha says:

        C4, just leave Sri Lanka alone..

        why all the people wants to know only the North,, what about the people who lived in the south and colombo?

        when LTTE bombed WTC, Buses, trains, temples, Air port – how many Buddhist, Catholics, Hindus & Muslims who were killed by the LTTE., dont you talk about those areas as well..

        we were scared to travel in the public transport those days. Cos they have LTTE suicide bombers all over and was leaving bombs in public and killed our children, mothers and fathers too.. its not happening NOW.. NOW WE ARE WAR FREE….

        those people who were living in north didn’t have proper electricity before. now only they have electricity and the freedom. LTTE went to schools in North and took boys and girls by force to their LTTE army, they gave cyanide to keep it around their necks,,, don’t you question those,,,

        we went to jaffna last year , every year its getting developed. How can foreign countries say its not developed and all the bullshit,, they see only a little portion and talk rubbish,, if they want development provide money to build luxury apartments in North…

        now we are free.. please keep sri lanka alone channel 4,,,

    2. Sara says:

      Dear drama,
      I’m a Tamil living in sl with my parents. Been a citizen in sl we don’t find any difficulty as u talk.as murali said Pl don’t try to mislead who ever read these type of articles good luck
      Sara Fred
      Sl

      1. Suren says:

        Ha Ha Ha, Good Joke !!!

      2. Ann says:

        Sara F? Are you a puppet like Muralitharan? I lived in Jaffna as well as in Colombo during the problems. I can move on but can’t forget.

    3. Srivanamoth says:

      Murali obviously played “cricket” by that comment! It was a googly! Surely he must know that it was his community in the hills that paid the highest price just 6 months into independence in 1948 when they were ALL disenfranchised without exception! Even MPs elected by the free will of the voters were thrown out of parliament all because they were Indian Tamils!

      Murali,of course, fully deserves the kudos that he so well earned with his unique bowling. But politics is not cricket. It is dangerous to mix the two.

    4. Sengodan. M says:

      Poor Muralidharan would have done better had he turned a spotlight on the plight of the plantation Tamils which has hardly changed since colonial times. Surely he wasn’t in such a dire need to sing for his supper? Maybe he too feared the white van!

      Sengodan. M

    5. Chandi says:

      Legendary English cricketer, Sir Ian Botham’s daughter, Sarah, yesterday
      expressed shock and surprise at the unprecedented negative media
      coverage Sri Lanka was receiving in spite of rapid post-war recovery
      process.
      She said: “I am really, really sad about the media
      coverage. I have seen much progress on the ground though nothing is
      reported.”

      So no different to what Murali said and what she says!

      Guess something fishy going on in C4!… are you actually telling us the truth?

    6. Mahesh says:

      No dear… he gave around 45 minutes interview to channel 4 and the that quotes is only one sentence.. Actually, there is no harm to him or Tamils in Colombo, Wattala, Kandy, or Wellawatta… we are living together peacefully. no any issue with Tamils or Muslims.
      Remember there are some groups and people who try to take some political advantages through some incidents.
      All most all Tamils who live in UK and Canada think that the situation in Sri Lanka is same when they left at 1970 and around. But remember, now it is totally wrong. Government defeated the terrorism not eliminate Tamils.. Tamils are living peacefully with Sinhalease and Muslims….
      It will prove by the crowd working and doing businesses in Colombo and other cities in Srilanka. Dont misslead the situation and spoil the Tamils and other peoples lives in Srilanka.

  2. Philip Edwards says:

    Jon,

    “… a strong stench of hypocrisy hanging over the affair.”

    You can say that again.

    A good deal of the hypocrisy comes from the nation and its media – the UK – who invaded and mass murdered in Iraq and Afghanistan. And whose “special forces” helped do the same in Libya and Syria…..and doubtless would do the same in Iran if they hadn’t been outflanked on the diplomatic front.

    I’m all for war criminals of every nationality being hauled in front of the International Court. Emphasis on EVERY NATIONALITY.

    Which begs this question: Why hasn’t Channel 4 News pursued Blair, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Brown, Straw (remember Pinochet?) and all the other relevant political, military and “intelligence services” in the USA and Europe?

    Or does C4 News “morality” only work when it faces East, and when handled by the likes of Hilsum, Miller, Rugman and your editors?

    1. Malithi says:

      Great point Philip that’s exactly what I wanted to ask Mr.snow who paints UK as a saint having to get their hands dirty in the affairs of some distant land. Whining about the “British influence” decreasing here. Britain has blood on its hands of this country they colonized for centuries so this is very well their problem as everyone else. Cameron’s not such a “brave” and heroic angel. If history should not be forgotten as we move on, then the actions of England shouldn’t be whitewashed away.This is the most biased,one sided article I’ve read in a long time.

  3. Shantha Deshapriya says:

    It is now very clear that Channel 4 is working for money of LTTE and their supporters and on behalf of the countries who previously funded and supported for the LTTE terrorist group ( i.e India,Canada , Norway and United Kingdom) .

    Above countries want to create a war in Sri Lanka to sell their military equipment . They are really angry with Sri Lanka as Mahinda Rajapaksha and his brothers manged to stop their business .

    Also it is very shame that Channel 4 journalist escape from the Media program organized by the ‘Hiru TV’ and Sri Lankan lawyer Mr.Kalinga Indathissa challenged Channel 4 for a debate in any international media . But Channel 4 is shamelessly not accepted his challenge . Why Channel 4 is fear for open debate … Shame Shame …

    1. Ann says:

      Not only in Sri lanka but all around world problems come from politicians and religious group. Where were the western countries during the torture, shredding blood, rape and abuse of innocent civilian?

  4. Kasthu says:

    We Sri Lankans found that the drama performed by C4 was well directed by the diaspora and their hooligans. From the first day to the last minute, the job of C4 crew was to publish critical and tarnishing reports on Sri Lanka to satisfy their pay backers at home. Unfortunately, UK PM played a man roll of the drama, who only allowed to ask question by journalist from UK and not others except one occasion at his so called press conference. So sad to say that he was in an imperialist mentality to the date, whilst only concerned about the vote bank back at home. It was surprise to know that C4 was admitting that LTTE done the worlds bad atrocities, and say they were critical about them too, but never seen any documentary so, far in their screens. Lot to write about the C4 behavior and how childish and unprofessional (just like vultures was a carcass) whilst they were in SL. Theirs only motive was to report on critical things on SL, nothing has seen as good as other countries admitted, accepted and commended about the progress SL made on everything including HR.

    1. Nada Manivannan says:

      CH4’s finding is not somthing new..but the way they broadcasted is something extraordinary..Srilnakans especially Thamils clearly knows what have been happening to Thamils over last 60 years, it is only now, world knows the facts after CH4 have involved in finding the facts themself and broadcast in a way that reaches the word and world leaders.. CH4 is a huge television and does not need LTTE’s funding. CH4 is operating in a country where humanity is respected at agreat deal.

  5. Sathya says:

    Results of bias report from Sri Lanka…disgraceful reports and pathetic only talk one side as you have been paid to do so….

    http://www.coventrytelegraph.net/news/coventry-news/terror-armed-mob-trashes-coventry-6294887

  6. Oliver says:

    Props to David Cameron & the British media especially Channel 4. They had the courage to say & do what was correct.

    How can a government unbiasedly investigate war crimes that they themselves allegedly committed??

    Please read:- http://groundviews.org/2013/11/17/chogm-2013-a-lie-well-told/

  7. gilly rayner says:

    I am a member of the silent majority, I watched with horror what we saw in SL. I commend John and his team, I know this site is likely to be hijacked by supporters of mass murder, torture and terror. Must we forget, we are all human and deserve at the very least safety in our country. We all arrive in this world with nothing, and leave with nothing. In life we have humanity, caring or murderous, look at your children, ask which you want for the? Does any child or indeed human deserve less ??

    1. Alan Pavo says:

      Maximum pressure must be bought to bring Tamil terror war goons to the justice. Tamil terrorists killed Tamil think tanks and educated moderate leaders such as Thiruchelvam, Kadirgamar, Amirthanlingam and many more. Tamil terrorists killed India’s much beloved PM Rajiv Ghandhi. They have created worlds youngest baby brigade, kids as young as 8 years old, and sent to the front to die. They have sent people as old as 80 to front line to dig the trenches and got them killed. Tamil terrorist suicide bombed their own civilians when they were escaping to a government safety camp. They have shot hundreds of Tamil people crossing the lagoon to government controlled areas. Tamil terrorists stole medicine and food shipped to north for civilians and fed the terror outfit. Tamil genocide was going on high gear for 40 years. Time to bring those who fund from UK, Canada and India to the criminal courts and jail for the Tamil genocide.

      1. Humanitarian Worker says:

        Dear Alan,

        If you want to do mathematics, lets do and see the numbers. No one said that LTTE did not do any war crime. Tamils themselves have experienced and accepted the crime. But have you ever accepted the war crime. Still saying “Zero casualty”, “nothing to hide”, “fake reports”.

  8. Ravi says:

    Channel 4 team should be commended for bringing the atrocities committed by the Sri-Lankan regime to the world’s attention.

    Mahinda Rajapaksa has said repeatedly that he is committed to Commonwealth values – which include democracy, human rights, freedom of expression and freedom of the press.

    If the regime had nothing to hide, why was the Channel 4 team put under constant surveillance?

    The regime is clearly paranoid!

  9. Ravi says:

    Maximum pressure must be applied on the Rajapaksa regime and all options should be on the table including sanctions, travel ban and freezing of assets.

    Sri-Lanka depends on the EU and the US for more than half its exports and for aid money. It also depends heavily on Western tourists.

    Tourism Industry in the country is controlled by the Rajapksa family and the military. Most of the money spent by tourists go into their pockets.

    According to UK Trade & Investment, UK remains Sri Lanka’s second largest trade partner by volume, after India. In 2012, Sri Lanka exported £907 million worth of goods to the UK, while UK exports to Sri Lanka amounted to £146 million with a trade balance favouring Sri Lanka.

    The UK, EU and the US can easily use sanction against the Rajapaksa regime! They do not need the UN route.

    The West should focus on regime change in Colombo!

  10. Alan Pavo says:

    It is glaring to notice LTTE terrorist missionary media group, A.K.A Channel4 did not bother to mention world’s most known Tamilian Muralitharan’s statement “Prime Minister has been misled, there is 1000 percent progress”. True agenda of Channel4 gang who covers Sri Lankan affairs are becoming clearer and clearer as time passes. Channel4, keep this in mind, Rajapakse’s have saved the country from clutches of Masters of Suicide Bombings who also fund your livelihood. Sri Lankans will again and again vote for Rajapakha’s. All what you do is having a livelihood around the stories and by inducing chaos to “news”. Good luck, carry your cameras on shoulders and run around like headless chicken! Produce 10 times or 1000 times the videos as you like. Sri Lanka will be progressing as the Channel4 dogs bark at the train.

    1. David says:
      1. Humanitarian Worker says:

        Dear David,

        Murali should undestand that for tamils to forgive, they (Singhalese) should accept the truth first and apologize. Sri Lankan government still says “Zero casualty”, “nothing to hide”, “fake reports”.

        But no one (not only tamils) will forget anything.

    2. Shakti says:

      Channel 4 news team did a great job, otherwise the Tamil race in Sri Lanka would have been wiped out by the Rajapaksa murderous regime. All Sinhalese journalists would have been slaughtered or disappeared just like Lasantha the Su nday Leader Editor whose killers roaming around freely in the streets. What a Disgrace!

  11. Jeffrey says:

    The vitriol hurled at the critics of the distasteful Rajapakse regime by its supporters indicates clearly that the criticisms have resonated in the global arena. That notwithstanding, MR’s performance, crude as it may be, has played well to the gallery in Sri Lanka, which is the audience that he cares about. After all the brouhaha, it would be back to normal in Sri Lanka — white vans on the prowl, journalists who dare oppose the government getting neutralized, mosques and churches being burnt, and bribery and corruption being the norm for getting anything done. As the promotion tagline goes “Sri Lanka — a land like no other.”

  12. William N says:

    Sir..Large majority of Jaffna tamils were brought in by Britishers to work in Tobacco farms. Cameron should resolve their issues.

    1. Humanitarian Worker says:

      Dear William,

      No one has brought tamils to Jaffna. Tamils have been living since long long. please refer to history.

  13. Eagle001 says:

    Dear Jon and C4 Team,

    Well done to you all for your courageous cover up of the treatment of the Tamil people. I think the decent people only need to ask why is there Srilankan Tamils all over the world as refugees. I listened to one Srilankan couple who are decent good hard working people here in the UK, when the man of the family with tears said how the SL army came to Mannar and knocked down the houses of the people living there. Anyone who opposed were shot. As long as the government of SL do all they can to truly rehabilitate the Tamils and help them there wont be lasting peace. The wounds of war go deeper for true healing. But we cannot expect much from a government that kills its own Singhalese journalists, priests, aid workers, investigators who have criticised the government or who have cried foul play. Certainly a banana republic indeed. Murali cannot speak for all Tamils as he is a descent of the Indian Tamils and who always lived with the Singhalese in the South. And the comments are correct if he said anything else he would have disappeared along with the 1000’s who have, and he knows this well. He may be the world’s leading wicket taker but I must say he is a coward when it comes to speaking the truth, or may be he has bowled another political doosra or was that a chuck? Also please remove the comment by Pon Aiiya, his comments about thanking in Tamil is a lie. The comment in Singhalese means, “Go F**** you Mum”, so please remove this nasty comment by another Singhalese pretending to be a Tamil. Thanks again to C4 and the team, I cannot forget how the people in the north embraced Jon Snow with tears in their eyes, well done team C4.

    1. Alan Pavo says:

      Here it goes again! Your comment “Murali is a coward” reflects same sentiments that Tamil terriorist cherish for 40 years. You guys killed all moderate Tamil leaders such as Thiruchelvam, Kadirgamar and Amirthalingam by labeling them as cowards. Now kill Murali as well ???? Is this a surprise ? Tamil extremism is everywhere, we need to protect all people from Tamil terror and heal Tamils to cure extreme sick minds.

      1. Eagle001 says:

        Dear Alan Pavo,

        Please read my post again. There was no mention of killing Murali. I think perhaps you are being a little trigger happy like some of your countries soldiers, may be you share their genes. It was that he did not speak the truth when he said the Priminister Cameron was misled. And so he is a coward. If a country is ruled by fear and the bullet naturally people will play ball to serve the gun. It was the SL government soldiers who recently opened fire and killed people who were protesting because of contaminated water. These people were innocent Singhalese. The SL government killed journalist Lasantha Wickrematunge another Singhalese, and I know a little bit of detective work will unravel more Singhalese silenced by the present government of SL. Please be a little patient and face the facts dear. It is those who cannot face the truth who hyperventilate, and I am sorry but Murali is a coward.

    2. George Alemida says:

      Here we go, if someone is from Kandy or Colombo and is of Tamil descent and states something different to the Eelam brigade then they have to criticise and demean them. So basically you are saying he is the `wrong type of Tamil’ because he didnt live in the North or East and because he disagrees with you. This smells of fundamentalism and insularity to me. You obviously dont believe in multiculturalism in Sri-Lanka. I suppose you would look down on a Burgher or Weddah because they were not pure enough for you. Murali walks the walk by supporting communities across the country. How much money have you raised for Sri-Lankan communities across the country and rebuilt schools, hospitals and support reconcilation. Most of the Eelam bridage have done bugger all they just wave their flags and hate anyone who isnt part of their little insular club. Perhaps you should join the other fundamentalists like the BBS, JVP and Islamists. Whilst the rest of us moderates try and build a better Sri-Lanka. Murali is a great man and a true Sri-Lankan.

    3. supun says:

      They are all over the world just because they can earn a lot of money from those countries. Why do not they look asylum in India if it is a problem of life? They are looking for Big money using sympathy of poor Europeans. Therefore, I respect Tamils. Still They are clever Sri Lankans.

  14. g manickavasagar says:

    How people can still come up excuses for the Sri Lankan regime is beyond me. How can Cameron be misled, he went, he saw and he obviously was appalled.
    All those women who risked everything to push past the extremely violent police to get foreign attention were not play acting. These women knew that they will have to pay a high price after the cameras are gone but were desperate enough to risk everything.
    As for Channel 4, if this is how foreign journalists are treated how do you think the locals would be treated? Press freedom indeeed!!!
    The people who are commenting should give up trying to defend the indefensible. Anybody with a bit of sense could see that accusing everybody who criticises Sri Lanka of being LTTE supporters are the only argument that these people could come up with.
    Well done Channel four and I being a UK voter, unlike the Sri Lankan supporters, will vote Conservative.

  15. S.Yogi says:

    First of all Well done Channel 4 and other medias who telecast-ed what Sri Lankan rulers are like.
    This is NOT channel 4 saying…..
    According to UN “over 60,000 innocent peoples have been killed during the final stage of the war”.
    According to Human Rights Watch & Amnesty International “over 12,000 Thousand Tamils have been made to disappear by Sri Lankan task force white van AFTER Sri Lankan government declared war was ended in May 2009″.

    Tamils may forget and forgive riots, murders, rapes and genocide of Tamils in 1958, 1977 & 1983 BUT Tamils not going to FORGIVE OR FORGET what Sri Lankan sinhala government done to over 150,000 thousand innocent Tamils who have been killed, raped and genocide.

    Finally, their is a say in Tamil about what Rajapahsha done was ” Thadi kuduthu adi vakigirukkan – gave a stick and got beaten up.

    We know Mahinda Rajapaksha not going to keep the baring of his side fulfill, that is their own criminal report of LLRC to be accomplished, but we the diaspora Tamils will make sure PM David Cameron will stick to his word and take the case in UNHRC against Sri Lanka in March 2014.

    S.Yogi – Thamilan

  16. Shan Sundar says:

    I love you Jon and the crew as our mothers did in Jaffna ….
    God bless C4 and crew …

    Thank you very much.

  17. James Wilson says:

    Mr Snow, Thank you very much. Please investigate and write about the fate of 17 International Aid workers.
    In August 2006, a group of aid workers were brutally executed in Sri Lanka. Despite compelling evidence that Sri Lankan soldiers and members of the government were involved in the killings, the Sri Lankan government has yet to press charges.
    According to Human Rights Watch (HRW)and ACF, the killings took place on August 4, 2006, when armed men broke into the headquarters of the Action Contre La Faim (French International Aid Organisation) and murdered 17 people who were working on relief efforts for victims of the 2004 tsunami that had devastated Sri Lanka. These men and women were killed execution style, with bullet wounds in the back of their heads and necks.
    It has been seven years since this horrendous incident, and still nothing has been done—no arrests have been made. Last year “The seventh anniversary of the summary executions of 17 aid workers has brought the Sri Lankan government no closer to obtaining justice for the victims,” noted James Ross of Human Rights Watch. “President Rajapaksa’s callous indifference to the suffering of the aid workers’ families will be a sad hallmark of his administration.”

  18. Humanitarian Worker says:

    Dear ChanNel4 team,

    We have no word to express our feelings. We know very well, the job that you have been doing is on the grounds of an ultimate humanity moral. Hence we don’t want to dilute the soul of the work by just saying “Thank you”.
    We feel a bit of stressed relived after seeing you in person and having shred some of our experiences, requests, etc.

    You are the first and foremost international media who brought the Sri Lanka’s genocide on Tamil population. Till then all our appeal to the world, particularly during the final stages of the war was not even considered instead the world encouraged Sri Lankan government to finish off LTTE at “ANY COST”.

    We SALUTE to you ChanNel4.

  19. Shiva says:

    Jon Snow, you are great to witness the plight of the Tamils and your contribution to deliver Justice will be remembered for your bravery and in history!

    The Commonwealth has tarnished its image by allowing an alleged war criminal regime to host the Summit. Canadian PM Stephen Harper and the Mauritius PM Navin Ramgoolam have made strong and ethical decision to boycott the summit for lack of human rights and crimes against humanity. Whereas the Indian lame duck Manmohan Singh said due to the sentiments of Tamil Nadu he stayed away from the summit and it exposes the lack of respect for human rights and humanity by the Indian UPA regime.
    The real spotlight, the bravery and the star was David Cameron who visited Jaffna with an open mind, seen firsthand the oppression, denial of human rights, attack on the civilians and the media, plight of the refugees that changed his mind to demand for an independent international credible investigation if the regime fails (he knows that the regime will fail) and conveyed privately to the President and also in public and left Sri Lanka without participating the event thereafter. It is an outstanding skills by a young vibrant leader who is from the world famous Oxford University and reminded authoritarian rulers that they are accountable for crimes against humanity, war crimes and genocide and cannot escape from Justice!

  20. Rb says:

    Good work Jon Snow. If it wasn’t for your show publicising the atrocities that have gone on, the world would be blind. Firstly it is non sense that channel 4 would be funded by LTTE…I’m sure they have enough money! Secondly the disappearances…murders of young people is continuing and channel 4 are just shedding light to the world. In addition if the government have nothing to hide, why are they stopping the press and not letting investigations continue?! Surely if they have done no wrong, they would want to prove it. As for muralitharan, he should stick to cricket. If it was his family who had gone missing, he would paint a different picture!
    Jon Snow you have truly done justice to the Tamil people, and I thank you for it!

  21. Reegan says:

    Dear all murali is Indian Tamil he is not srilankan Tamil he never been Jaffna
    Now he is telling us to forget every thing
    When the government killing Tamils he is safe in kandy.
    If he lost brother or sister did he forget every thing.

  22. Tharsan Oslo says:

    Hats off to Mr. Snow & Ch4 team for continued work in bringing to light the truth of what happened during final phases of the conflict.

    Agree that there should be credilble and indepedent investigation.

    Noting that Murali is retired from cricket and making living getting paid by SL gov, so whatever he says are doctored views.

    Well done and keep up good work..

  23. Moderator says:

    I was born in jaffna and lived there for few years till war was escalated. I had seen in-discriminatory shelling by srilankan Armies from Army camps, ships and Air.This was unacceptable for a sovereign country to do this towards its own people. How could they do this ?
    Did they ever shell or Bombed anywhere in south of the country ? No . Most of the people from south were in blackout about what was going on in north and east of the country for more than 40 years. Majority of the people are from south are kind and good people . but politician has made the mess for the whole srilanka. They lie about everything since 1970s and dont care about anyone. there is not going to be any peace without justice for the people who have lost their loved ones. I should salute C4 their contribution to make srilankan people aware what happened during last phase of war.
    Still , Look at SL government attitudes towards foreign journalist , human right activist. THEY DONT CARE.
    People should topple this current government and lead the way to their prosperous srilanka for all.

  24. Chathu says:

    Who’s going to demand international inquiries into this war crimes http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Rebellion_of_1817%E2%80%9318

  25. Vallu Path says:

    C4 and other british chanel have done a great job by covering and plight of the tamil people. thank you so much

  26. Ravi says:

    @ William N

    Tamils have been in Sri-Lanka since the 2nd century BCE.

    The Tamils who were brought by the British do not live in the North or East of the country.

    You need to do your research before writing comments!

    I suggest you Google the following to find the truth:

    Tamil Kingdom in Sri-Lanka

    The Ceylon Citizenship Act of 1948

    The 1956 Sinhala Only Act

    1. Sue Newson says:

      Well said Ravi ….

      Murali is one of the people whose forefathers came to srilanka from India and lived in the hill country.They are totally different , for example Murali had an arrange marriage with a girl from India as they were from the same tribe/caste etc …. The Tamils in the north have been living their from earliest known time, their culture and ceremonies are different to hill country tamils

      The Sinhalese are the mixture of Balangoda tribe and Vijaya’s troupe from Bengal India ….. So all in all all srilankans have blood connections to people in different parts of India….

      The Sinhalese are either ignorant or purposely comment on all public blogs that all Tamils are from India…. Your Buddhism as your Pali language came from India ….

  27. Vel says:

    Dear Jon, I have no words to thank you for raising the issue of Missing person in Srilanka. My uncle was arrested in 1991 for inquiry in Batticaloa – Srilanka by Government forces and never heard of him. Checked all the prisons in Srilanka and could not find him yet. I can feel the pain when i saw the mothers, brothers and sisters hold their beloved one’s photo and hoping to find them.
    When i saw the images of you carrying the petition from them, Mothers beg you to help them on this issue, i have no words than crying (Very sensitive picture – can see the real feeling on the victim’s relatives face). Really sad to see them crying and have nobody to complain.
    On behalf of the Tamils(CIVILIAN) i wish to thank you and your team for your brave decision to visit srilanka to report CHOGM, specially the report from Jaffna,even though your team had life threat before you leave.

  28. Nilani says:

    Channel 4 has been the only voice for the Tamils of Sri Lanka since the war ended. It had showed the world what many people didn’t see. The job they have done shows their passion for the truth! I hope from their hard work comes some form of justice. Many people who are in denial about the horrors that’s happening in Sri Lanka really need to wake up see what’s in front of them!!

  29. Klein Perez says:

    People If anyone doubt about human rights abuses in SL please come and visit the country and speak to 99.80% of the population they will tell you that Sri Lanka is in fact a very peaceful country we all Sri Lankans (Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims etc etc ) live in harmony and we all had a common enemy which was defeated in 2009 by our Army, i failed to see the problem with that. your Channel 4 documentary is based on 0.20% of the population who had a some member of their family directly or indirectly involved with LTTE. I find your documentary highly manipulative, biased and not a true reflection of Sri Lanka, we live in harmony and we defeated common enemy which is LTTE terrorists so why dont you stop stirring hatred among all the nationalities we have no issues with each other.
    Tamils in SL are enjoying equal rights as anyone else in the country and they are spending much better lifestyle than Tamils in India. And people who has migrated to Canada, Australia and other European countries including UK, France and Norway are reluctant to accept the truth as they are worried that they might lose the refugee status due to the end of the war and they are funding the propaganda. LTTE was not a rebel group or in SL there never was a civil war. LTTE was the most brutal terrorism group in whole word. (Please search google for LTTE FBI) There influence is everywhere including hardcore Islamic groups like Al-qaeda. Please have a full understanding before jugging SL. i beg you stop stirring unwanted things if you don’t have any thing better to broadcast please go to Iraq, Syria, Egypt Afghanistan and show the world how many innocent people are dying because of a war that west has created/ funded. thank you.

  30. Kavitha says:

    Dear Jon and Channel4 team,

    You all have done a brave job. Wish there were more journalists like you.

    Thanks,
    Kavitha

  31. K Smith says:

    Thank you for trying to make a difference in the world and reporting the injustice innocent civilians experienced by a corrupt government. Great journalism!

  32. terence humphreys says:

    Deeply disappointed by C4coverage of CHOGM. Agreed it should not have been in Sri Lanka, agreed that war crimes needed highlighting along with the lack of rule of law but the Commonwealth is not a British institution and Britain does not determine its policies. C4 needed to tell us about the leaders who attended and their countries;it needed to inform us about the discussions, the agreements and the decisions..even the budgets. Without all this your coverage was provincial and one-sided.

  33. Rehan says:

    I am Sri Lankan and proud to be. I am glad the war finished as it was a protracted affair which lasted and cost too many lives. Nevertheless, I am not stupid and cannot argue against the facts quite evident from the Channel 4 documentary. Our government in Sri Lanka is denying an independent investigation. We should have values and virtues – this has been the fundamentals by which every Buddhist including myself aspire towards – treating all equally regardless of race or religion. I find this hypocrisy and am embarrassed by those who stand for such bad values and morals and simply want to deny this.. like many of the Nazis who deny the holocaust. If you have an ounce of common decency, you would stand unbiasedly and bring those guilty of criminality to justice – every one of those Tamils affected are Sri Lankan and deserve the protection of their land. Both sides were wrong but denying people basic rights clearly is an injustice. Peace & Respect to All Brothers

  34. Ted says:

    Many thanks for Channel 4 Team for bringing the truth to the world. Unless the Sinhala people change their mind-set there will not be any reconciliation in Sri Lanka. If anybody telling the truth what have happened in Sri Lanka there are branded as Terrorists, White Tigers, Tigress and working for money. The first political killing was of S W R D Bandaranake in 1956. Do not hide a pumpkin in a plate of rice but all the truth will come out one day. Future will prevail do not worry it will happen in the near future.

    Ted

  35. Shaft Sinker says:

    Jon and the team!

    First off, thanks for your excellent, unbiased journalism. Without press like you, we would see a lot more conniving and manipulative brothers at the helm in many countries. Having said that, we still have a long way to go though!

    As for the case in SL, things look quite bleak. Reconciliation is nowhere except on paper.

    The West have high hopes on the on the LLRC recommendations and implementation of it. The LLRC was made of eight members and some of them were former government employees. So, you having seen what it is like to report from SL, what do you think about the credibility of the LLRC itself?

    Once again, thanks for all the worthwhile efforts.

  36. Miriam Albert says:

    Murali has to be safe to carry on playing cricket and enjoy his wealth. He should stick to his cricket and not speak for the real Tamils. My respect for him has gone now. He reminded me of Kadirgamer. Very selfish indeed. Money works. P M did a v good job to highlight what is still going on. Mr Cameron is not a child to be misled. Muralitharan has never spoken for Tamils. He looked like a fool trying to answer Jon s questions. Thank you P M and thanks to Jon Snow and Ch 4 but no thanks to Muralitharan Miriam Albert

  37. Vani says:

    Well done Channel 4 team.
    You are the best and genuine journalists.
    Keep fighting for the truth and one day you might get the Nobel prize.
    Thank you

  38. Shiva.J.Sundaram says:

    The greatest of all human rights – the right to life, is not guaranteed under the constitution of Sri Lanka. Reconciliation is not like one-way traffic..We are willing to forgive our oppressors and move on. But we will not forget. I am delighted of your safe return from the banana republic. Job well done channel 4 team!

  39. Kalu Malli says:

    Jon Snow should now actively pursue his own government to prosecute Tony Blair for committing crimes against the Iraqis and Afghanis.

    Over to you Jon :)

    Or does justice exclude the Western Brotherhood?

    1. Nuremberg says:

      Kalu Malli,
      For the record, the ‘Western Brotherhood’ you refer to, first obtained the approval at the UN through Security Council resolutions before going in its mission to Iraq and Afghanistan. You esteemed leader borrowed the fighter planes from China and bombed the civilians in the ‘No- Fire- zone’. Furthermore, war crimes and human rights abuses, were committed against a civilian minority population that was deprived of basic needs like food,water,medicine and shelter. Flood of rape allegations continue to emerge even today.Again for the record, the few war crimes committed in Iraq and Afghanistan have gone through the due legal process and sentences have been handed out to the offenders. The Rajapakse Regime still maintains that it is immune from prosecution and has a ‘Sovereign Right’ to be excluded from any international inquiry. That is the argument and excuse the Nazis gave in the 1930’s and 1940’s. These are only a few of the fundamental differences.There are many more. So before you start preaching the Sri Lankan idea of justice to other nations, try and get the big-picture and the facts right.
      In Iraq, Sadam and his cronies first invaded another country and when the going got difficult set fire to their own oil and gas fields. In Iraq about 5000 Marsh Arabs were killed by the use of chemical weapons (Nerve Gas). Sri Lanka is alleged to have used phosphorus coated bombs and cluster bombs on the civilians in Mullivaikal. The Afghans under grip of Taliban with links to Jihadi- Extremists became a world threat. The Taliban have shot an Afghan girl (MALALA)for going to school . Yet you express sympathies towards Iraq and Afghanistan and try to project the ‘western brotherhood’ as anti-muslim (The Jihadist-Line). This raises serious questions about your motives and your twisted ideas about justice and freedom. Even the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in Sri Lanka can’t give an impartial verdict, that is unfavourable to the present regime and then survive in her post. So why do you try and lecture others about justice? Your home grown idea of justice is just laughable.

  40. SL BORN CANADIAN says:

    I DON’T HAVE ANYTHING TO ADD OTHER THAN SAYING THANK YOU, THANK YOU AND THANK YOU.
    GOD BLESS CHANNEL 4 AND DAVID CAMERON.

  41. bhumi says:

    What is really perplexing is the selective amnesia of some foreign governments and international human rights busybodies such as Human Rights Watch (HRW), Amnesty International(AI) and media institutions such as Ch4, BBCetc. For 28 years when the Tamil Tiger terrorists were creating havoc in Sri Lanka massacring 26000 soldiers (add to that 600 policeman who were shot dead after they ceased their duties and gave in without a fight after a presidential order), carrying out over 280 attacks on civilian targets (most of them had a body count of over 50 each) which included suicide bombings and attacks on civilians in border villages of North East provinces, most of the victims were Sinhala people. Did not this people have any human rights? Did any foreign govt, or Human Rights group or international media raise any issue on these killings then, when most who organised and funded these attacks lived in their backyards?

  42. anthonymanoharan says:

    On the day a cricketing legend (Sachin Tendulkar) bade goodbye, a cricket hero of Sri Lanka brought shame upon himself by uttering untruths . Having the opportunity to play with UK’s Premier , Murali soiled himself by his utterances. When the world has seen the many tamil mothers with pictures pleading with Mr Cameron where is the improvement? Hats off to Sangakarra who made a genuine attempt in Jaffna by going to the schools and giving them support a few months back. Reconciliation can be grasped only when Justice is in the Air.
    Thank You Channel 4 for your brave efforts to visit Jaffna. It is a pity the so called cricketer did not see why you were prevented from going to Jaffna by people sent by the Govt. Perhaps he should have been with them.

  43. Rakith says:

    Dear tamil friends,

    Did it ever occur to you that during 1987- 89 period more than 60,000 youth were killed by the armed forces? Has there ever been a call for an inquiry? Almost all of them were sinhalese. Please ask the question. Where was channel 4 then? For those who are talking about tamil genocide, did you conveniently forget about the sinhalese genocide then? On both occassions, paramilitary groups fought against a democratically elected government and lost. What about innocent tamil intellectuals such as former foreign minister Mr Lakshman Kadirgamar, Dr Neelan Thiruchelvam and Jeyraj Fernandopulle whom were killed by the LTTE? Did you call that tamil genocide? I think not.
    I do not wish to justify the countless number of civilian casualties during final stages of the war and as far as I am concerned there were no winners in a war. It is the country that suffered for 30 years and it is the country that lost valuable lives. I believe now there is a great opportunity for us to unite and rebuild especially after the establishment of the northern provincial council where the overwhelming majority is represented by the tamils. Your voices were pretty much silenced by the bullet during LTTE’s rule and I see this an excellent opportunity.
    We united against our colonial masters when we were under the British rule, I cannot see any reason why we can’t do the same now. The country has produced great tamil leaders in the past such as Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan & Sir Ponnambalam Arunachalam and I’m sure it has the potential to produce more.

    1. SL Born Canadian says:

      Dear Friend,
      I’m a Canadian born in Jaffna in a Government hospital in late 70’s. I studied Medicine in a Sri Lankan state university. Later I worked in Singhalese area where I was treated equally well like similar doctors who worked there. Then I moved to Canada and now working in a good position which I would have never achieved in Sri Lanka because of being a Tamil.
      Having said that, still I do love Sri Lanka period. What I’m seeing here, there are few voices from “whatever way you call” Sinhalese, saying just forget what has happened in the past and move forward.
      Well, there is no issue in moving forward if there is no obstruction to move forward. Simple fact, we all know that how we were artificially jointed and united by British for their ruling purpose. Before that, even if you look at your Story book which would say, how Tamils and Sinhalese had bitter relationship in past.
      Nobody want those bitter relationships to continue. Just remove the factors or causes which bring those environment again and again.
      After this war ended, I visited Jaffna. Every second, I felt how Military feels about this victory and how they treat Tamils. I don’t say every single person in Military is same but hardly I never met a person with good heart.
      You know at the arrival to my ex-mother land, even though I still know some influential people in Health department and I can talk in Sinhala I had to pay bribery to get VISA at Katnayakka.Eventhough I had a valid on-line visa approval with me. He asked bribery not only being a Canadian Tamil but also he was sure that no one going to investigate for that. For me, giving 20 dollars was better than waiting there for one or two hours or more. I just gave and continued.
      This is the real situation in Sri Lanka. We wants law and order to come back. What is law and order? Having accountable to anything and everything.
      War crime investigation not against Sri Lanka, Sri Lankan Government, or entire armed forcess. Its only against whoever committed crimes in past and committing now. Please understand, it want affect you in any way unless you did something purposefully.
      Having functioning law and order is not something good only for Tamils. It’s also good for Sinhalese and all other communities. You don’t need to fear that by having a war crime investigation you will loose some number of Armed men and politicians who were behind the war. Actually by removing those criminals, we will get a country that will be a real pearl for all Sri Lankan and people like me.
      Have a good day.

    2. Srivanamoth says:

      That was then yet during British Rule! Not at all possible now since the unilateral 1971 constitution et al to the present time under Sinhala Only Buddhism Foremost Rule. Be practical and honest. Murder of innocents over the last 40 years under PTA is a very serious issue. If SL governments did not investigate and act then the international community should under the UN Charter and relevant laws.

      Only carnivores couldn’t care less!

  44. Lanka Peace says:

    Thank you Channel4 Team for this unbiased blog and a balanced documentary “Sri Lanka’s killing fields”

    Question for any genuine reader:
    1. Unbiased book: can you recommend any ‘balanced’ books on this ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka? :

    2. Can you please recommend any INDEPENDENT video documentary that shows about the Media Freedom in Sri Lanka?

    3. Can you recommend a reasonably independent web site that gives the background and ROOT causes for this Genocide of 2009?

    Thank you.

  45. Sara says:

    David Camerons visit to Jaffna and declaration of an investigation was the moment of Sri Lanka’s Balfour Declaration

  46. Mahinda says:

    There will only be peace when the current regime / government is removed. If this does not happen, I am sure there will be more deep rooted anger and frustration will take over this beautiful island.

  47. SW2 says:

    Hi Jon and the pro-Eelam anti-Murali lobby

    Unbiased journalism? Really? It used to be, Jon or perhaps it never was. As you well know, film is a visual medium and having short caveats / disclaimers like ‘LTTE committed war crimes too’ isn’t equal in this format of narrative journalism.

    As a result in real minutes and content, the reporting so far has a 90% bias and is therefore only 10% of the real story of the end of the war – which is worrying as C4 / Killing Fields claim this is the whole truth when in fact it has been selective.

    Even this article on your reflections on the CHOGM event, the only one photograph is of a Tiger Eelam flag with a bloodied hand from a recent UK Tiger protest… why?

    If C4 and the Killing Fields company were true tireless investigative journalists surely they would have found footage of Tiger fighters and their atrocities during the last few months as well … but you haven’t, why is this? To an uninformed audience, it just shows ‘indiscriminate’ shelling on civilians without ever showing where the Tigers were fighting from or where they were storing their weapons, or the civilian reserves the Tigers forceably conscripted as revealed in the Wikileak documents.

    I want to know if you or Callum or Jonathon questioned what would happen if the Tigers themselves moved into the No Fire Zone in the heat of the battle and its consequences on the civilians. Is this because the people who have the films of this do not want to hand them over to you as it will not serve their best interests? Have you asked yourselves if you’re being used as proxies in the post-conflict strategy in achieving Eelam and if so are really you comfortable with this? I know you find it hard to stomach being called LTTE sympathisers.

    Whether you realise or not, C4 are playing politics. Using their films, their platform and their reputation for political leverage, you are flying around the world to present the case and garner support with world leaders in the same way the Tamil Tiger supporters would love to do but can’t. The timing of these films and reports are huge coincidences, uncanny even… that I dare to predict that there will be a new ‘unseen’ film in March 2014 just a week before the important UN summit that David Cameron has put his reputation on the line for.

    Personally I think CHOGM was the best thing for post war Sri Lanka. If you had boycotted it like the Tiger lobby protested for, Cameron and yourselves would not have gone to Jaffna and meet Sumanthiran, Wigneswaran and the mothers of LTTE cadres face to face. But I fear you have been used again by Cameron and the shifting Tiger lobby who will continue to use you to for exposing the gross human rights, freedom of press violations and loss of democracy in Sri Lanka without ever having to answer for their involvement in this sad situation. You are being played… wake up.

    It is a shame that my words will disappear on this blog like all these others, and the predictable game continues with no real change.

  48. supun says:

    All this just because mere jealousy. USA, UK and other Europeans who have highest technological war equipment have failed wars everywhere in the world.

    So this is jealousy.

    Ohhh! One more thing……….. You British killed our king……. Could you please appoint a committee to submit a report on that, Mr. Prime Minister?

  49. Anthony says:
    1. kals says:

      I don’t think Murali have any rights to talk for Tamils in North … We never thought he is from us… All the years we where receive killing bolls from SL he happily played the boll… I don’t thing he ever thought that Tamils in north is dying and never try to help us… We don’t even know there is a Tamil guy in Cricket until 2009.. ha ha we don’t have electricity to watch his play… so .. How do we know him :)
      He know nothing about us – He is mislead by State media & Gov That’s it.
      Just ignore him – first mistake is any media or international count him as one of us – That’s really stupid!

  50. shirantha says:
  51. Rakith says:

    Dear SL Born Canadian

    This is exactly the point I was trying to make. The country needs educated people like you to take leadership and contribute in rebuilding the relationships between the two communities. I am not saying just forget the past and move forward. All what I am saying is that it is the country that suffered and it is us the people whether they are Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims or any other who suffered for the last 30 years. Now, there is a great opportunity for people like you to shine especially after the convincing win by the tamil parties in the recently held provincial council polls. Your voices can be heard again and I’m sure that the presence of military can be negotiated by the northern provincial council.
    Do you think, being a Sinhalese that I would be spared when it comes to bribes. You’re mistaken. I have also given bribes to government officials in order to get something done. They do not treat you differently from that perspective. The corruption is a widespread issue within the government. Not long ago, even a government minister claimed that he had to bribe someone to expedite the process.
    Yes, I agree with you. The law and order which has been deteriorating must be improved and there must be an inquiry into human rights abuses. But, the point I am trying to make is that all of these issues can be sorted out by us. We do not need foreign intervention or an outsider to tell us what to do. You may recall that during early 90’s when the Indian Peace Keeping Force was occupying the country, the Premadasa government provided arms to LTTE to fight against the Indian Army, regardless of the animosity between LTTE and the government.
    The country belongs to you just as much it belongs to me. We are all Sri Lankans and I am sure with people like you we can move forward.

    1. SL Born Canadian says:

      Dear Rakith;

      I appreciate your comments. Yes, we all need to work to move forward. As I mentioned earlier our problem is much longer than 30 years. We can’t think or work that we could resolve our problems and to be able to live like family in a day or year. There are tremendous different between us and we need to respect each other’s value in a respectful manner.

      Asking my brothers and sisters to learn Sinhala with Arms in their forehead is not going to work for longer days or years. You might have noticed even in the last Commonwealth meeting they wrote “Ibovan” in Tamil instead of writing “Vanakkam”. Simply they want to sell their victory to everybody at every opportunity. Nowadays you could see error less billboards in Tamil in number of western countries but not in Sri Lanka. Until such times come we need someone to negotiate our problem.

      Every single person knows the situation of law and order in Sri Lanka. Asking them to conduct an investigation for war crimes is a total waste of time. I don’t understand why even educated Singhalese are opposing an international war crime investigation. Role of international countries in our civil war stated much earlier than we think. I think, there was an agreement between Indian Primer and Sri Lankan President even in 1960s or 1950s regarding Tamils’ civil right in Sri Lanka. Also in modern day, we Tamils supported the war from various foreign countries and similarly Sri Lankan Government also got support from various foreign countries to conduct this war. So, involvement of foreign powers in our ethnic conflict is not something new. We used them so many times in past for good and bad. But this time we will use them for a good reason because we don’t have system to handle these sensitive issues.

      I don’t know how many of us are ready to think in a positive way to handle our issues even without so called political leaders. Those political leaders made our country are not suitable for anyone. I’m ready to move forward if at least a good number of are agreed to have a proper reconciliation in North and East, which are the most affected Provinces in the civil war. Also war heroes of both parties should be respected equally and those war criminals from both sides should be investigated internationally and corrected appropriately.

      Please understand, only reason I mentioned repeatedly about international investigation because I’m not in a position to believe the current legal system in Sri Lanka. As you know, even after so many requests from different people, SL government’s LLRC report says, “There is no evidence to say that SL armed forces committed crime against Civilian”. That’s the real sorrow of Sri Lanka’s legal system. Do you think that is a fair way for conducting an investigation even after killing tens of thousands of civilians? If you appoint some other committee from or by SL government I’m sure result would be100% similar to LLRC report. That is the only reason I want someone from outside the country to conduct those investigation.

      It’s really nice talking to you though this blog.

      Vanakkam

  52. amanda says:

    well, I am a Sri Lankan, very proud and i live in the hill country, in Nuwara Eliya, where we live in PEACE with Tamils, my 5 best friends are Tamils, and people here dont face any problem, before and after war, we will show the evidence of Peace “Together”, we live happily. Talk about the LTTE attacks before we ended war, how many Sinhala people were killed, did you people talk about that???? no…, talk about all human right violations that took place, without taking one side…, there are many sinhalese people who cannot forget their past as well. Talk about them too

    “PEACE” people….

    1. kals says:

      Yes Amanda, That’s what we are trying to say you people live in south talk our Tamils killed in the war too… you spend too much time to talk about the people killed in south by LTTE OR other but never know there are 1000 times more people killed by SLG.. You just think what you here from state TV & Radio is the only think happening in SL… just like an Ostrich – put your head in sand and thinking that’s what all…
      We are dying even you get disturb by LTTE…
      We state don’t have any problem with Indian Tamils Live in hill side as long as they don’t have identity it’s not different for state GVE even we knew Sinhaleesh can be friendly with Tamil but SLG have to take the necessary steps for that but what they are doing more and more trouble to north people… try to understand – now you have open media in the internet world.. let them at-least world know what has happen in north in these 25 years… Believe or not i am a victim of this 25 years War you want even believe what experiences i had by SLG you can’t even imaging… iF you here me you will admit..” you are not eligible to talk about it”

  53. Haa Hoo says:

    In war there’s no prize for the runners up. Sri Lanka won the championship. Losers sit and watch the party.

  54. Aaks says:

    In summary, most of the Sinhalese come up with these ‘facts’/excuses to prove that there is nothing to investigate in Sri Lanka.

    1) Past is past. No need to dig it.
    2) LTTE has done so many atrocities in Sri Lanka.
    3) Tamils are living ‘happily’ among Sinhalese, for e.g., Colombo

    Here are the answers:
    1) If past can be simply forgotten and no accountability is needed, then there is no need for a judicial systems in any country including in Sri Lanka (Or, do you say judges and courts are there only to judge on/prevent murders, rapes, etc that are going to happen in the FUTURE??)
    2) Yes, LTTE did them, and has been denounced/banned as terrorist organisation in most parts of the world, and its members are being prosecuted in many countries. Now, we expect the same for the Sri Lankan regime whose atrocities are even bigger in scale and continue unabated.
    3) First Tamils not ‘happily’ living among Sinhalese. They chose to live among Sinhalese, even after the 1983 communal riots which witnessed 3000+ Tamils murdered by Sinhala mobs, just for few reasons. By living among Sinhalese, Tamils could avoid indiscriminate aerial bombings carried out by the Sri Lankan Air Force – SLAF (is there a single instance where a Sinhala area got bombarded by the SLAF?) and economic embargo that blocked almost all the essential items – such as fuel, food – reaching Tamil areas.

    Please do not try to fool the world.

  55. Neil Craig says:

    I am certain that C4′s slanted coverage of this will harm ordinary people in Sri Lanka. Slanted because what is alleged to be going on cannot be understood except in connection with the war. And that during that war the Tamil Tigers were genocidal in an open manner. People whose relatives were victims of genocide are not going to be gentle in restoring order – that isn’t a matter of right or wrong but an inevitability. By ignoring the Tiger atrocities and playing up present alleged, by comparison, minor stuff C4 is inciting more Tamil terrorism which will inevitably lead to retaliation. This lack of concern for people compared to getting a simple B&W story is common.

    However there is worse hypocrisy here. The repeated headlining of crying women & children is deeply cynical and also suggests a lack of actual facts. It is reminiscent of the coverage the UK state media gave to Kosovo where the lack of evidence of Yugoslav atrocities was mare than made up for by pictures of crying Albanian women.

    We now know that the reason there was no evidence was because the news was faked. In 4 1/2 years of Milosevic’s “trial” no actual evidence of any authorised wrongdoing by the Yugoslav government could be found. Channel 4 was deeply involved in promoting these lies and thus the criminal war against Yugoslavia, not only by pushing false propaganda stories but also by deliberately censoring mention of the genuine atrocities being carried out by the drug lords, sex slavers and organleggers hired and armed by NATO as the KLA.

    Much worse. When NATO took over Kosovo, under an agreement to disarm the KLA, run a non-racist regime and respect Yugoslav sovereignty, they immediately appointed the KLA as police and sent them out to engage in genocide (such as the Dragodan Massacre where at least 210 unarmed civilians were murdered by NATO police outside the UK hq; to kidnap thousands of teenage girls to sell to brothels across Europe; to ethnically cleanse 350,000 people and to “arrest” thousands and dissect them while still alive to steal their body organs for western hospitals.

    Does anybody at C4 suggest that the Sri Lankan government have done anything 1% as evil as these atrocities?

    Does anybody at C4 suggest their government is 1% as “war criminal” as our own?
    Does anybody suggest that C4′s coverage of both is anything other than deliberate and almost complete censorship of atrocities more obscene, though not numerically equal, than Hitler’s?
    Does anybody at C4 suggest that you did not deliberately lie to promote and then censor genocide?
    Does anybody at C4 deny that you have continued to censor and lie to promote the racial programme of Adolf Hitler in the region?
    Every single day over the last 14 years.
    In which case can there be any suggestion that we should believe a single word you are saying about Sri Lanka, let alone what you imply (but do not say) with the usual cynical pictures of crying women, are in any way true, this time round.

  56. Sarujan Sitsabesan says:
  57. Rakith says:

    Dear SL Born Canadian

    Thank you for your reply. Yes, the racial tensions between the two communities began long time ago and I agree it is not something that can be resolved overnight. It will be a huge challenge especially in the face of extremists from both sides those who are doing their bit to further aggravate the situation. There are some examples on this blog too.

    Tamil is an official language according to chapter 4, article 18 (2) of the constitution. It is also a national language according to article 19. Therefore, no tamil speaking person can be person forced to learn another language. Although I do not approve it, writing “Ayubowan” in tamil cannot be interpreted as an attempt to sell a war victory. It is how the majority greets in Sri Lanka and you may notice even in India, the indians always use “Namaste” regardless of so many languages spoken in the country.

    I doubt that there was an agreement between an Indian prime minister and a Sri Lankan president in 1960s or 1950s regarding Tamil civil rights. The first ever president with executive powers was Mr J R Jayawardena who became president in 1978. Are you referring to Bandaranaike–Chelvanayakam Pact? If so, then S. J. V Chelvanayakam was the leader of the main political party in Sri Lanka at the time. I understand that there were foreign countries who tried to intervene during the war but no one was successful in bringing about a peaceful solution to the conflict.

    I agree with your point that the political leaders made it worse and they were only concerned about winning the elections. But at the same time, I also blame LTTE for their part in disallowing people’s votes in 2005 presidential election. Had the people from North and East been allowed to vote, there would have been a different result. Suffice to say that LTTE brought about its own downfall.

    I am not sure if you have read the LLRC document completely. Let me quote the following paragraphs from the LLRC report for your information.

    “9.33 Based on the firsthand accounts and other material placed before it by the affected
    civilians and detainees, it was clear to the Commission that despite the efforts by the
    Security Forces to avoid harm to people, there have been instances of exchanges of fire
    over the civilian areas including NFZs causing death and injury to civilians.

    9.37 The Commission therefore recommends that action be taken to;
    a. Investigate the specific instances referred to in observation 4.359 vi. (a) and (b) and
    any reported cases of deliberate attacks on civilians. If investigations disclose the
    commission of any offences, appropriate legal action should be taken to
    prosecute/punish the offenders.
    b. Conduct a professionally designed household survey covering all affected families in
    all parts of the island to ascertain firsthand the scale and the circumstances of death and injury to civilians, as well as damage to property during the period of the
    conflict.

    9.38 With reference to the considerations contained in Section V – Chapter 4 concerning the
    Channel 4 video, the Commission, has the following observations/ recommendations to
    make:
    a. The images contained in the footage are truly gruesome and shocking, irrespective
    of whether the incidents are ‘real’ or ‘staged’ ones.

    9.39 Based on the available material and taking into account the above considerations, the Commission wishes to recommend that the Government initiate an independent
    investigation into this matter to establish the truth or otherwise of the allegations
    arising from the video footage.

    9.41 The Commission therefore recommends that the Government of Sri Lanka institute an
    independent investigation into this issue with a view to establishing the truth or
    otherwise of these allegations and take action in accordance with the laws of the land.
    Equally, the Commission feels that arrangements should be made to ensure and
    facilitate the confidentiality and protection of information and informants. The
    Commission strongly urges all those concerned, especially the organizations that
    provided the original images and the broadcasting organization, to extend fullest
    cooperation by providing the necessary information to facilitate this work.”

    1. SL born Canadian says:

      Thanks Rakith for you reply:
      Sorry I didn’t reply to your post on time. Actually I looked/ waited for couple of days then I didn’t come here for long time.
      First of all, I don’t agree and totally fed up with your argument or comparison of usage of Namaste in India and Aibovan in Ceylon. India is a country which made of nearly 30 states and more than ?100 languages. But in Ceylon we just have 2 states, North & East and rest, and it has only 2 languages. How could you compare that and this? So, please don’t insult us saying that since India or some other country is/are using only one language and why do we need 2 or more language in Ceylon.
      In Canada, if you go to most of the government offices you can get service in both official languages. Why do they have to use French along with English? Why can’t they just follow the Indian model in Canada as you suggesting in Sri Lanka? This is the basic problem; we are missing even in educated Sinhalese. We need a country to that has equal rights to everyone regardless of his/her origin. Having some rules in paper never worked in Sri Lanka unless you have functioning law and order. If you go to the Colombo central Railway station ticket counter, even for Vavunia train we have to ask in Sinhala to get a ticket or just say vavunia and give money. To get the balance you have to have proficient command in Sinhala otherwise only answer you would get “no change”. Those days in 2004/2005, they were ready to give balance of 25/50 cents to Sinhalease but they were not ready to give even 45 rupees to Tamils. – (Those days it was 155 rupees to Vavunia and even if you gave 200 rupees you wouldn’t get anything. That’s the typical Singala government servant’s mentality in SL. Now it may be even worse. Simply they think because of being Sinhalese they have to show off their powers towards ordinary Tamils in every single occasion.
      Only think I’m asking from you and others just bring the justice to this country. We were/are badly affected by current system for years and years. It’s not something we saying that we want a separate country/state to fight against to you. It’s only to live with you with equal rights. Meaning of equal right is a big thing unless you know what it means it. Even Mahinda could say he is there to give equal right to his citizens/Tamils but simply he couldn’t do that because his governing is built on racism.
      As of educated people; we have to understand what is the meaning of democracy which is something you are saying, yes which is build on majority and minority. But also we have to understand the principle of civil rights. Civil right is which something to protect every one regardless of whether some one belongs to minority or majority. In SL there is no civil right.
      We can’t practice and protect civil right in a country where there is no law and order. If you have still doubt on it, I don’t think we can have a meaningful discussion here.
      About LLRC;
      You coded few lines, thanks,
      What did they mention about in-discriminated shelling and killing of thousand of innocent civilian by Armed forced? Don’t say, Armed forced didn’t do that. That is the routine “war technique” of SL army for long time. I was raised and lived in war zone for more than 20-30 years. What about those tens thousand of missing people? Those people were hand over to Armed forces by their parents after an official announcement by Armed forces. Did they say any thing about that?
      It’s hard to believe that your brothers and sister did those crimes against the humanity but that is real. We just need to remove those perpetrators whether it is your brother or my sister for the better life of rest. For that we need an international inquiry into alleged war crime by anybody whether it is the President, army/navy/ commander/s, LTTE, TNA, EPDP, UNP, SLFP, JVP……………you name it.
      Hope you might have read the story of killing of ACF worker by SL army. They waited for more than 6/7 years but nothing has happened by SL inquiry. Most of those innocents killed in Tamil areas don’t have that kind of international support to say and prove that they were killed by SL army. We need to help them. Those people were perished without any trace but those perpetrators are still ruling and ruining the country. As of civilized people we have to unite and voice for those people.
      Thanks

      1. SL born Sri Lankan says:

        Hope you might have read this news as well.

        http://www.dailymirror.lk/news/40064-church-calls-for-political-settlement-and-accountability.html
        Church warns of ‘foreign intervention’ in Sri Lanka

        These are the people who blindly supported Genocidal SL government to continue this war against Tamils for many years. Now they are realizing a bit. But the problem is, it’ll take years and years to understand the graveness of the Tamils by everyone in SL. By that time Tamils will be an archeological remnant in SL. Everyone in the globe knows that SL government is Genocidal government, but people are waiting to take action against them for a long time. I don’t know why they are waiting so long to take action against a genocidal government.

        As I said earlier, I really don’t know why “Sinhalese” are against international war crime inquiry. It’s only against the war criminal not against Sinhalese. I’m sure no one will be affected for having a war criminal brother/sister/neighbor/villager/minister/President.

        As of a SL born person, I will support the international community to remove those war criminals from the country to safe the rest of the innocent citizen whether they are Tamils or Sinhalese.

        Thanks

      2. Rakith says:

        Dear SL born Canadian

        Thank you for your reply. First of all, I’d like to point out some facts. There is no country in the world at the moment called “Ceylon”. It is Sri Lanka. Yes it used to be called “Ceylon”. As you would know “Namaste” is a Hindi word which probably inherited from Sanscrit. There is only 41% of the total population in India who speaks Hindi yet that is the Indian way of greeting. There is more than 74% of total population in Sri Lanka who speaks Sinhalese and I find it difficult to believe why we should not be using “Ayubowan” to greet. We have more than 2 languages spoken in the country. Yes, Sinhalese and Tamil are the main languages but English, Malay and Rodiya (Native Veddah) languages are also spoken.

        There are no states in Sri Lanka but 9 provincial councils including the northern provincial council which has recently been established. I never suggested that we should follow the Indian model in terms of official languages. What I said only applies to greetings. Both Sinhala and Tamil are official languages and the government department must use both languages. I agree with your comment when you say that we need a country that has equal rights to everyone.

        The incident you mentioned about not getting your correct balance after buying a train ticket has nothing to do with your ethnicity. I know a few of my Sinhalese friends who experienced similar problems. You were probably lucky to get away with 45 rupees but I personally know some of my friends who had paid more than 1500 rupees in bribes to get something done. Again, I would reiterate the fact that corruption is widespread within the government. Unfortunately, when the tamils are at receiving end, most of them think that it happens as a result of their ethnicity. This is not so.

        As I have said previously, the law and order has taken its toll. But this issue is faced by everyone in the country not just Tamils. There were Sinhalese journalists as well as Tamils who paid the ultimate price. But we all must stand against it.

        Yes, we need to find out what happened to those tens of thousands of missing people. But, are you sure that they were all handed over to the armed forces? Didn’t LTTE hold them as hostages during final stages and didn’t they shoot their own people when they attempted to leave the area. So, my guess is that there are more than one reason for their disappearances.

        The issue I have with some section of the diaspora is that when LTTE is using suicide bombers, taking innocent children away from their parents by force to be used as child solders and hanging cyanide capsules around their necks, carrying out indiscriminate attacks on innocent civilians in villages, killing world leaders such as Rajiv Gandhi they did not call for any war crime inquiries then and in fact, some of them assisted LTTE via various bogus names such as TRO by providing money and arms. It is hypocritical that the very same people who funded and armed LTTE terrorists are now calling for a war crimes inquiry. They are quite prepared to brand the government as “Genocidal” yet they conveniently forget about the atrocities carried out by the LTTE.

      3. SL born Canadian says:

        Thanks Rakith:

        Probably this must be my last post in this topic.

        I don’t understand why we can’t call this country as Ceylon. What is the problem in it? First of all you have to realize; reconciliation doesn’t mean just to accept whatever we are doing or did in the past. So please be generous to be in accepting the feeling of others. Sri Lanka means nothing to me. Name of Sri Lanka was chosen by bunch of idiotic Sinhala resists to satisfy some extreme Sinhala elements. You don’t need to give some explanation to this. Even in parliament people, including some Sinhalese are talking about changing this so called “National flag” which doesn’t represent all the communities and religions of this country.

        If you are thinking you want to have country for everyone, please understand how we are being affected by extreme Sinhala chauvinists for years and years. If you want to represent those people I don’t need or want to share my opinions here.

        I understand there must be wrong doing by LTTE for 30 years. But that is nothing if you compare with successive SL governments done against to Tamils for years and years. It is really hard believe and understand how Sinhalese destroy us for years and years unless you are willing to see that. I’m sure Singhalese must have problems but those are nothing compare to suffering of Tamils. Those problems are common issues of a developing country. But, I’m talking some specific issues related to Tamils which are committed by Sinhalese and their governments. If you are saying, there is nothing like this to Tamils, we are not going gain anything by sharing opinions here.

        You could tell many concerns of LTTE and I’m not here to defend them. Please understand I’m not here to support them. I’m talking all about crime against humanity. As I mentioned earlier, we’ll call for a neural international investigation into alleged war crime by each and every one who involved in the war whether LTTE, SL government, UNP, SLFP, JVP, TNA, EPDP…………… me and you. With those finding we’ll see who the real perpetrators are.

        What is the problem in calling for an international inquiry for Singhalese? You didn’t say anything about that. I’m not asking this question towards war criminals or SL Government. You don’t need to say anything if you are here to defend Genocidal SL government. I’ll understand that. This is an open option for both Tamils and Singhalese to bring out their concerns to every one rather than fighting within them for years.

        Well, about “Aibovan” I clearly said it’s hurting my feeling and it’s against my civil rights. But, you are saying, this is something right and asking me to agree and accept it. Since you never know the meaning of civil right, you are still believing that whatever this genocidal government doing is right. I’m totally different from you. How can you force me do something which I don’t want to do? I don’t think you will understand unless you are willing to correct your wrong doing. But for your information, in Canadian borders if you meet an officer they will greet you in both of their official languages and depend on your reply they will continue either in English or French. If you are not ready to believe that I’m not here to argue again and again without any purpose.

        As I said earlier, we never ever lived as united people in this country for long period. At times we were forced by external forces to live together for their purposes. This time it is by India and some other countries. If you think this war victory will last for years and all the Tamils should be subordinate to Sinhalese, I don’t have any answer for that. But hoping it won’t last longer.

        Please just leave the LTTE, talk about Tamils and Genocidal government. I’m not against with ordinary Sinhalese who are struggling with us for things like anyone else in SL. More than that, I really want to help them. As I said earlier, I worked in Sinhalese areas for some times and I know about situation. We need to have a better country to address the grievances of every one. But the current constitution and the legal system is totally against it.
        Thanks

      4. Rakith says:

        Dear SL born Canadian

        Thank you for your reply. Let me first explain it to you why we shouldn’t be calling it “Ceylon”. It was the British who invaded our country (the land that belongs to both of us) gave that name when it was a colony from 1815 to 1948. There were a lot of people who fought hard against the tyranny of the British government including the two tamil legislatures such as Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan and Sir Ponnambalam Arunachalam. I believe that it is disrespectful to those who fought by persisting with “Ceylon”. You may call it “Illankai” and I think it is a better name than “Ceylon” but certainly not “Eelam”. I think your instincts are right when you use your pseudonym “SL born Canadian” rather than “CL(Ceylon) born Canadian”, so let your instincts take charge.

        The name of Sri Lanka was introduced in 1972 when the country became a republic. I do not wish to provide any explanation to this as you insisted. Otherwise, I could have done so.
        Your claim that the National Flag does not represent all the communities is incorrect. Have you noticed the orange and green stripes on the flag? What do you think the orange stripe represents? It represents the Sri Lankan tamils.

        Yes, I agree that the successive government did not address the ethnic problem and the tamil community did suffer as a result of their failure but you cannot generalise and criticize the Sinhalese community for that. I would never blame the tamil community in the country for what LTTE did. Yes, both LTTE and the government are responsible for sufferings. I do not wish to justify countless number of civilian casualties incurred regardless of who committed the crime. But, I have my reservations when it comes to intervention from foreign sources. As I have mentioned previously no foreign country could resolve the war which dragged on for 30 years. There were peace talks with the help of India, Norway & Sweden but nothing was successful.

        In regards to “Ayubowan”, what I said was that there is nothing wrong with using it to greet people from other countries. Remember, this issue was raised with reference to CHOGM. I do not expect you to greet everyone by saying “Ayubowan” and in fact, I always greet my tamil friends by saying “Vanakkam”.

        Yes, I agree with you that we need to have a better government which addresses the grievances of everyone. There are issues with the constitution too. The laws we currently have are nothing new and most of them were borrowed by the British initially. But the problem is they are not followed properly. You cannot simply compare the legal and other systems in Canada with those of our country. We have a long way to go. Yes, we are way behind but with the help of all peace loving citizens I am hopeful that someday we can get there.

        Anyway, thank you for your comments and maybe someday, we might be able work together for a better country.

  58. Eagle001 says:

    Well done Aaks,

    Completely agree with you there. I think this time the Rajapakse regime supporters/SL government supporters could not really bring good arguments to defend the act of their government.

    Thanks be to God for people like Channel 4, for making the truth available to us. I also would like the independent bodies to look at the government of SL atrocities in the south too of the the many Singhalese & Tamil journalists, religious leaders, humanitarian leaders, businessmen who disappeared because of what they said against the government.

    Did you see some SL journalists barking at the C4 team and Jonathan Miller in thw news. Some of the questions he asked they could not even answer but stick to a mantra, “You LTTE supporter, you take LTTE money”. Poor chaps, I would like to see their faces when one day when reality truly bites.

    Unfortunate for that country it is in a pathetic state of leadership, the war may have been won but not the hearts and minds of the people. You can only buy so much respect with a bullet and a wad of cash, it will be only temporary. I do not think this government has any means to foster lasting peace among communities. That will be its perennial challenge.

    They can only for a little while be ducking and diving at the issues and questions posed by the excellent and courageous C4 journalism. For the truth that they tried to hide will one day become more powerful than they can handle. I think it is Karma. Thank you C4 team for getting the boulder of truth to role. I am sure it will avalanche one day.

    1. Charu says:
  59. sam says:

    After reading the comments, what I can say, most of the opinions not from tamils in Sri Lanka. They hate and want to tarnish Sri Lanka. What they like to see not the war crime investigations at all. Only a divided Sri Lanka.

    So, help and get the support from C4. C4 was used by LTTE also to kill hundred thousand of innocent people. Kindly read the link below.

    http://lakbimanews.lk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=11683:from-sri-lanka-questions-about-wars&catid=64:lakbimanews-views&Itemid=91

  60. William Harvey says:

    C4 has raised their voice on behalf of voiceless.

    Ignore what sinhalese and tamils say but send an international team to find out the truth. The SL govt need not worry if they are not committing genocide.

  61. Charu says:

    Rakith
    //In regards to “Ayubowan”, what I said was that there is nothing wrong with using it to greet people from other countries. Remember, this issue was raised with reference to CHOGM. I do not expect you to greet everyone by saying “Ayubowan” and in fact, I always greet my tamil friends by saying “Vanakkam”.

    I just wanted to say some think about this Ayubowan – I know – even i say Ayubowan to sinhala friends not Vanakkam bez they don’t understand what is Vananakkam but why you wanted to say to us Ayubowan – that mean you shenhalesh are only part of the government who wanted to wellcome others in your own welcome.. I don’t understand your logic at all.
    How you expect Tamils will understand what is Ayubowan?
    Oh incase you guys are so broad minded and thinking lets mixes the welcome you might write VANAKKAM in Sinhala, Well come in Tamil & Ayoubovan in English..

    You are not simply accept this small mistake and change!

    1. Rakith says:

      Charu,

      I don’t think you have understood what I said. Let me explain it to you. Each country has a customary way of greeting tourists and in Sri Lanka the customary way of greeting tourists is “Ayubowan”. In India they use “Namaste”, which is a Hindi word and there is only 41% of the total population in India who speaks Hindi. There is more than 74% of the total population in Sri Lanka who speaks Sinhalese. If India can use “Namaste” with only 41%, can you please tell me why Sri Lanka cannot use “Ayubowan” with 74%. I am not talking about the greetings of Sinhalese and Tamil communities when they meet each other.

      1. charu says:

        Ok great – I got you know…
        You mean Sri Lanka & You officially announce this is what your greeting word.. When that is officially announced?
        Tomorrow you might say you only few amount of Tamils so we will close all Tamils Schools? That will be logical tooo… is in it?
        Are you crazy to compare India & us.. how many languages in India? 3-4 -5 ? how many.. 29 Languages..
        We only have 3 native language? Why you can not think that way you are not even ready to satisfy us on this little think… how narrow your minds are?

        I don’t mind you write in any language this greeting but that’s show how you keep Tamils in the county how you trying to destroy and make Sinhala only county.. The war is too part of the process… totally 200,000 tamils killed in the war over these years and come down to 12% from 35 % … just after few years it will come down to 0% ..

        Rakith… This is part of the show lets enjoy the game.. (This is what you guys love & Order your government)

        The Name of the Bhudda …

        Some time i use to think Sinhalese are good, this is all because of the politician, but i understand it’s not
        basically you sinhaleesh want this country to free from Tamil & other religion

  62. SL born Canadian says:

    Thanks Rakith:
    It was nice talking to you in this Blog. Well, I don’t know whether you were able to get some more fundamental information about Tamils problem in this Island but I tried best with own my experience and understanding of this conflict with my best knowledge.
    I understand, Tamils are minority in this united country but that doesn’t mean they don’t have equal right to live like Sinhalese in this island.
    We want a separate country or equal rights. But even after lose of so many thousands of lives and all those destructions to country especially to North and East even so called moderate/educated Sinhalese are not willing accept this call.
    You could say 1000s times that LTTE did this and that, but those are nothing compare to what is Sinhalese did and DOING right now.
    As I mentioned earlier, I lived in that country for 20-30 years. I know the situation well. I’m not a foreigner. So please understand I know the problem fairly well compare to some one who doesn’t know anything. Your “National Flag” explanation is the one of best joke of the year. Why can’t we change it with a roaring tiger with 2 color strips for Sinhalese and Muslim? If you think that those current color codes are equally representing Tamils and Muslim with Sinhalese. You know, there is an another new problem about another “National thing”. Now they are imposing a new rule that SL “National Anthem” should be sung in Sinhala only, even in North and East. You may have a nice explanation for that also. Please understand, we are fighting for equal right. It may take time but hoping at some point Sinhalese will realize it’s better to separate and/or share the country rather that being under the rule of dictators and drug cartels.
    Again don’t think Sri Lanka is a better name than Ceylon. Even after 50 years after changing the name of the country, you can’t sell your best product; Tea, which is again the blood of Tamil, as a product of Sri Lanka. Also Eelam doesn’t mean North and East the Island. Eelam means Ceylon. it is an another ancient name of this island. Tamils are asking Tamil Eelam and not the Eelam. Please read the history from other sources also and don’t totally depends on your story book only.
    I greatly accept and understand your position of not willing have an international war crime investigations into alleged war crimes committed by all parties who were/are involved in this conflict. It give me a better Idea about with whom I’m talking but I never regret about it.
    Again it was nice talking to you.
    Will meet in another news article.
    Thanks Channel 4 for allowing me to post my comments here.

  63. Rakith says:

    Dear SL born Canadian,

    I think you have finally let the cat out of the bag by demanding a separate state. This proves that you have the same separatist ideas of LTTE whom fought for almost 30 years. If you think you can achieve what LTTE could not achieve after 30 year of brutality you are mistaken. That is why people like the former chief arms procurer Mr Kumaran Padmanadan aka KP, former eastern commander Karuna and thousands of ex fighters had to give up their demands and settle for less. On the issue of equal rights, yes I agree but as I said previously this will apply to all the Sri lankans not just tamils.

    I have been living in the country for more than 40 years and I know what happened. I conceded that the tamils were hard done by the successive governments. You said that the National flag does not represent other communities, which is incorrect. That is why I said the orange colour represents Tamils and I can assure you that it will never be changed to a roaring tiger. This emblem which is being shown on this article is the flag of LTTE and the separate state was their motive. No Sri Lankan will allow this.

    In relation to the national anthem, my personal opinion is that we should modify it so that a verse in Tamil is also included. But there should only be one national anthem. That is why it is called a national anthem.
    I did not discuss the marketing names of Sri Lanka when it comes to tea exportation. But I am sure that most of the tea products exported by the government shows that it is a product of Sri lanka. It was the British who gave the name “Ceylon” and I do not have any problem with exporting them to western countries using the name as a marketing tool. But it is completely different from a citizen who was born in the country chooses to address it in that way when talking to another citizen of the same country.

    The name Eelam has never been used as an ancient name. Please provide your source. The most ancient name was “Lanka” as mentioned in Ramayana and Mahabharata. These are not my history books, they are from India. Lanka, Lankadeepa, Tambapanni, Sihaladeepa, Parasamudra, Palaesimoundu, Simoundu, Taprobane, Sielediba, Salike or Sileke, ILANKAI, SINGALDIP, Serendib, Saheelan, Zeylan, Ceylon, Sri Lanka and Shri Lanka briefly were the names used.

  64. bhumi says:

    So when are you going to produce the documentary on UK war crimes? Please keep us posted, we eagerly await that.

    1. Nuremberg says:

      Bhumi,
      Why can’t you get those who produced your ‘Sri Lanka counters- C4 lies agreed upon’, to do a similar war crimes documentary on ‘Allegations of War Crimes by the UK government’. Anything after that fiasco on the Sri Lankan documentary, and the Commonwealth Leaders’ meeting in Colombo, is bound to be good work of fiction with questionable entertainment value.
      Why not go for it?

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