Kit Siang urges international community to continue pressure on Sri Lanka govt

GEORGE TOWN: The international community has been urged to continue to put pressure on the Sri Lanka government and the United Nations (UN) to ensure the wrongs endured by Tamils during the civil war are righted.

Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang said no efforts should be spared until the Tamils in that country were restored to their human rights and the truth.

He said the reconciliation process as called for by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) investigation into Sri Lanka (OSIL) should be justly and meaningfully completed.

“The future lies in concrete and meaningful steps in Sri Lanka supported by the international community which upholds justice, truth and reconciliation,” he said today in his keynote speech at the International Forum on Human Rights Violations in Sri Lanka.

Speakers at the one day forum include Indian politician V. Gopalsamy, popularly known as Vaiko, Parti Amanah Negara (PAN) president Muhammad Sabu, Bukit Bendera MP Zairil Khir Johari and Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran.

In his opening speech earlier, Deputy Chief Minister II P. Ramasamy postulated that the UN resolution on the matter deviated from the OSIL recommendations due to geopolitical considerations.

He said the USA-backed resolution was to strengthen domestic inquiry processes instead of setting up tribunals to try those implicated in war crimes as recommended by OSIL.

Ramasamy also got those present laughing when he said someone attempted to stop the forum by sending Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng a letter to link him to terror networks related to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE).

“The forum is not so much on violations but about bringing truth, justice and reconciliation to the Tamils in Sri Lanka,” he said.

Launching the forum was Guan Eng who said human rights violations and violence must be condemned wherever they occurred and cited the recent Paris attacks and Mali hostage situation as examples.

“If we keep quiet by not speaking up then we will lose that part of humanity. So, we must at least speak up,” he said while urging people to resist extremism.