Amnesty International on post-war Sri Lanka
Posted on August 17th, 2011

Asoka Weerasinghe  Kings Grove Crescent . Gloucester . Ontario . Canada

16 August 2011

The Editor, THE EMBASSY, Ottawa

Sir:

I am disappointed with Alex Neve , the Secretary-General of Amnesty International, with his opinion piece on Sri Lanka, as Amnesty International has always  had difficulty to acknowledge the positives on Sri Lanka when it comes to Human Rights.

Here’s what he missed to inform your readers.  He says, “Early 2009 was a frightening, chilling time for hundreds of thousands of Tamil civilians in Sri Lanka. Trapped between an advancing Sri Lankan military offensive and the retreating armed opposition LTTE (or Tamil Tigers), they were caught in the middle of intense, unrelenting fighting and suffered abuses from both direction.” 

I cannot see any difference between these Tamils and the majorities Sinhalese  and minorities Muslims when they were experiencing ” a frightening chilling time”¦“ for 30 long years of this war as the Tamil Tigers were bombing willy-nilly with claymore mines and suicide bombers all over the island killing thousands of innocent Sinhalese and Muslim civilians.  When daily commuters before getting on the buses and trains make a sign of the cross or put their palms together in prayer wanting to get back home in the evening in one piece and not as a puzzle of blood, flesh and bones, in a wooden casket. And mothers standing at their door-steps looking down the road in the afternoons wanting to see their children return home in one piece without being bombed to smithereens at a street corner by the Tamil Tigers.  This went on for 30 long years.  There is no difference between the Tamils during the last five months of the war and the Sinhalese and Muslims during all 30 years of the war. 

Neve says, “It was, by any measure, a human rights and human rights catastrophe.”  What he forgot to tell your readers was, “Sri Lanka handled this human rights catastrophe with finesse, when they performed a miracle by housing the 300,000 Tamils in temporary welfare camps who were liberated by the Government’s armed forces from the clutches of the Tamil Tigers who herded them like cattle from the west coast to the east coast for 30 months as a human shield, and preparing a million meals a day to feed them three hearty meals – breakfast, lunch and dinner each day. That temporary medical clinics looked after the sick and pregnant mothers and their infants.  And children were taught in temporary schools within the camps by thousands of volunteer qualified teachers, and there was no outbreak of cholera, which is normal in such a situation.   That within 24 months, except of a few thousands of refugees all were sent back to their homes after the terrain was demined, the infrastructures rehabilitated and the houses that had been destroyed re-fabricated and rebuilt,  and with seed money and utensils to start their lives.  And it seems that a few thousands are refusing to go away from the camps as they are well looked after by the government.”  That is a reality check which Amnesty International seems dishonest not pointing these positives on Sri Lanka to your readers. 

What Alex Neve didn’t also point out to your readers was that after 30 years of hijacking the “ƒ”¹…”right-to-life’, the most sacred human right that any civilized human-being should enjoy was given back to 22 million peoples of Sri Lanka by the Government of Sri Lanka by eliminating the Tamil Tigers militarily on 19 May 2009.  And since then not a single bomb or a suicide bombing has gone off on the streets of Sri Lanka. Nor do morning commuters pray before they get on the bus or train wanting to get back home in one piece nor do mothers stand by the doors in the afternoons wanting to see their children come home from school in one piece. And I could go on.  

 I am miffed and stymied by Amnesty International’s dishonesty not wanting to tell your readers the positives of post- Eelam War Sri Lanka.   Unfortunately they only make hay out of the negatives.

Asoka Weerasinghe

3 Responses to “Amnesty International on post-war Sri Lanka”

  1. gamunu6 Says:

    Many thanks, Asoka( Hope u don’t mind me addressing by ur first name, bcos I hav responded to your valubale contributions bfo) I am Sinhalese, living in Canada as you.

    In this particular article, I find AI as other two organizations, ICG & other now I forget, collectively criticize, find fault in every action Sri lankan govt. taken /takes even if it is very positive & ultimately help the poor in tamil areas of North & East.

    I know we always say, what happened in past we forget bcos the Int. Community say so. But not so fast.. WHERE were these HUMAN RIGHT Organizations & WHAT were they doing while LTTE, killed NOT only Sinhalese, but their own tamils.

    I don’t have to go into details of Cast Systems in Jaffna & other cities in North & East. It is high time we expose these HIPPOCRITES who focus ONLY on negative aspects & continue to harass a legimate Sovereign State with frequent elections
    VICTORIES, showing our democratic traditions, yet not a positive cmment from any of the three human rights organizations.

    Sometimes I am suspicious who are paying their salaries? As we all know even we defeated LTTE, according western intelligence sources, their organizations & forums in many forms disguised as humanitarian ones engage in FRAUD, HUMAN TRAFFICKING, MONEY LAUNDERING, THREATS to their own nationals in Western Europe, AUSTRALIA & many other countries.

    Who is going to investigate them? Now Australian govt. authorities are conducting inquiries as to how LTTE mass so much funds in a very short period of time. Netherlands, Germany & Sweden too carried out investigations.

    These THREE notably are out to waste their TIME harassing a small country who somehow DEFEATED the LTTE, which many organizations in USA said cannot be DEFEATED. Where are investigations about wars in present time waged againt three countries. Even if hese countries who engage in wars GO BANKCRUPT.. they continue to fund & make their own people suffer.

    Thanks Asoka for writing these articles/ letters and I am very impressed that at least there are few who speak up against
    organizations that are obsessed in making it so difficult for poor contries to develop & propsper.

    Sincerely, Gamunu Alahakkone. P, Eng (Canada) C.Eng (UK)…MAY GOD BLESS & MAY NOBLE TRIPLE GEMS, guide u & guard u in all your efforts. Thanks again ..

  2. jay-ran Says:

    Nice exposure of the NUDITY of these VULTURES who always try to harass Sri Lankan Govt and Sinhalese-Buddhists in every possible manner .As mentioned by Gamunu, WHERE THE HELL THESE VULTURES WHEN THE LTTE WAS MASSACRERING INNOCENT SINHALESE CIVILIANS DURING THE LAST 3 DECADES???

    Now Asoka, must ask these pundits,AI,HRW, and all such devils AS TO WHY THEY ARE SILENT OVER ACTIONS TAKEN BY THE POLICE AGAINST PROTESTORS,ON UK PM’s ADVICE,UNREST IN UK AND THE UK’S DESIRE TO ENFORCE EMERGENCY REGULATIONS WHILE PREACHING US THE OTHER WAY!!!

  3. A. Sooriarachi Says:

    We now know that AI, HRW, ICJ, Darusman Panel, UNSG & some UN Agencies and many others have been and still are acting according to an agenda already choreographed for them by the very powerful anti-Sri Lankan Westen Nations (though not all Western Nations), wanting to use undemocratic means to oust the democratically elected Sri Lankan Government, in one of the oldest democracies in the world.
    If Alex Neve really wants to protect humam rights of all human beings, he should now focus on Lybia and UK. In Lybia the NATO nations violating the intent of the UN resolution, have relentlessly and indiscriminately bombed the nation continuously for 6 months, destroying its infrastructure (deliberately and probably to create lucrative reconstruction contracts for cash strapped NATO & US businesses, once the conflict is over) and also killing tens of thousands of civilians including Gadafi’s children and grand children. NATO is certainly guilty of illegal and disproportionate action against Lybian people in their effort to bring in regime change with a West friendly bunch of people chosen by them, (but now infiltrated by extremist muslim elements).

    In the UK, after the recent riots, the Prime Minister is said to have recommended to the courts to ignore prevailing rules and give the accused maximum possible punishment, thereby interfering with the judiciary. He has also curtailed on media including Twitter and Face book (but no hum from Reporters Without Borders and other free media campaigners) and gone on to introduce emergency rule and other tough measures, which he thought is required to maintain law and order, (even though he condemned the SriLankan Govt for employing these measures to protect SL from Tiger terrorists, who are tens of thousands of times more distructive than the London rioters).

    Lets hear from Alex Neve, Brad Adams and company what they think about Lybia and UK.

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