4th Annual Ranaviru Commemoration In Wellingtobn NZ – 18th May 2013
Posted on May 18th, 2013

Dr. Chula Rajapakse MNZM FRCP/FRACP Spokesperson United Sri Lanka Association,

The United Sri Lanka Association of New Zealand held itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s 4th annual ranaviru commemoration at itƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s premises in Tawa, Wellington earlier todayƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  with USLA president Channa Ranasinghe, Presiding.

As before following the singing of the national anthem andƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  the observance of a two minute silence in memory of the deceased war heroes, all the attendees lit a candle also in their memory.

President Ranasinghe, observed that the RanaviruƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  victory ensured the right to life for citizens of motherlandƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Sri Lanka. Victory came at a prize that included thousands of youth at the prime of their life either injured orƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  killed .

He went on to add that, about 300 of them were left severely maimed requiring caring for the rest of their lives. The Abhimansala project created by the army commander Jagath Jayasuriya in collaboration with the Seva Vanitha BraveƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Hearts Foundation, wasƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to caterƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  for these Ranavirus. Each of these homes was for about 50 soldiers with each roomƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  being purpose built to cater forƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  each individual soldierƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s residual disability. They were located in different locations, Anuradapura (north central), Wilpitiwatte (south),Pangolla (north western), so that the Ranaviru could be close to their families.

USLA has donated nearly NZ $25K, towards this project. He called for all communities in Sri Lanka and overseas to appreciate theƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  sacrifice made by the war heroes by living in harmony , without reopening healing wounds and protecting the bonds between themselves. He observed with satisfaction that the Tamil community had participated with enthusiasm in the USLA new year celebration a few weeks earlier

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ USLA spokesperson Dr. Chula Rajapakse speaking next stated that we owed it to theRanaviru to expose the fallacy and the lack of credibility of the internationally orchestrated campaign started by the Tiger diaspora, virtually the day after the liberation of Sri Lanka from Tiger terror. This campaign wasƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to discredit this monumental achievementƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  of the Ranaviru by alleging that it was achieved through violation of human rights of the 300,000 Tamil civilians hostaged by the TigersƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  as human shields by indiscriminate & directed shootingƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  at themƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  resulting in the deaths of 10s of thousands of these civilians .

For a start, he asked, if the Ranaviru , had been shooting at these trapped civilians , would they have streamed into the arms of the same Ranaviru, the moment the Tigerbuilt embankment to prevent them from doing so, was breached. This is a fact as it happened in full view of the world media and their cameras.

If some one was shooting atƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  you through that door that wasƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  kept closed would you rush into their arms , the moment the door was pulled down, he asked. ThisƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  allegation thereforeƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  has no credibility he said

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Again , if the Rana Viru hadƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  been shooting at themƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  during the war, why did they spend the next two years demining their homes , at great personal risk, to re settle these300,000 thousand in their homes as they have done.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Next , what did the these rescued civilians have to say about these allegations.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  About 50 tamil civilians representing these 300,000,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  andƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  six Tamil doctors who had been with the civilians throughout , without exceptionƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  in the documentary ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…- Lies Agreed UponƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚ easily accessedƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  on U tube, all denied such shooting and revealed that any shooting at them came only from the Tigers, to prevent them escaping and so loosing their human shields.

Similar revelations are found in other documentaries , Eg ƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ…-Freedom SpeaksƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ”š‚

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ As to the numbers, a careful census carried out in 2010 by the government using Tamil teachersfrom the Vanni region, has established that the number of civilians unaccounted for after the war was about 2600 and not the 40-100 000 alleged . Further, Gordon Weise a UN official in Colombo during the last stages of the war, who was prominent in escalating the alleged civilian casualtiesƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to 40,000 whenƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  challenged during his book launch in Australia, in 2012 backed down to 10,000 casualties , so undermining the credibility of his and similar numbers.

Other vocal orchestrators of these allegations the Darusman Commission andƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Channel 4, had axes to grind with Sri Lanka from earlier altercations & had depended on Tiger Disapora information,without accessing Sri Lankan sources. An independent TV analyst Gill of Sunday times had characterized the information in Channel 4 as coming from those with muffled voices and blurred faces and videoƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s that were not attributable to any one.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ The LLRC and the army commission, that called for specific allegations of war crimes , to investigate received none though the non specific allegationƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  made internationally continues.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ These are some powerful reasons why these allegations have no credibility & it is our obligationƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  by the Ranaviru ,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to so exposeƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  & orchestrate the fallacies of these allegationsƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  internationally, to restoreƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  the honor & respect for the monumental achievements of the Ranaviru, he said.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ Besides discrediting the achievements of the Ranaviru this campaign also aims to deprive Sri Lanka , ofƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  the rewardsƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  of their sacrifices,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  peace and prosperity for Sri Lanka withethnicƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  reconciliation and reconstruction of the ravages of the war.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ However by making these HR violation allegations and alleging furtherƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  ongoing violations & disappearances , this campaign aims toƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  undermineƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  SL reaping the rewards of theƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  RanaviruƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s sacrifices by among others, discouraging and scaringƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  off would be investors from Sri Lanka. A particular target of this campaign is undermining the CHOGM in SL in November , as itƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  would provide immense exposure of whatƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Sri Lanka has to offerƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to would be investors.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ It is indeed ironical that this campaignƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  that accuses Sri LankaƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  of restrictive and undemocratic practices, would campaign againstƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  attendingƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  , what would be the best opportunity , for all to see for themselves the realities of Sri Lankatoday.

ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ However and thank fully, many western politicians visiting SLƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  in recent months, led by FM Bob Car and deputy opposition leader Julie Bishop,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  of Austalia and UK MPƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢sƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Ian Pasely JN , James Wharton, among many others, have all confirmed that the impressive realities in relation to reconciliation and reconstruction, inƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  SL today are quite different from what the TigerƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Diaspora has been making out.

In fact in a debate in the British house of commons on the 8th Jan 2013, a debateƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  calledƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to discredit Sri Lanka , MP Siobhain Mc Donagh who initiated the debateƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  regurgitating the dire allegations of the TigersƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  admitted on questioning, that sheƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  herself has never visited SL, and was depending on the tigers for her information . This is probably true for most Tiger media and political allies ,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  acquired through the use of their ill gotten war chest of billions and the political clout from 300,000 Tamil voters in Canada and 150,000 in the UK. Tiger Diaspora are best known for their internationally orchestrated misinformation to denigrate Sri Lanka

NavyƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  Pillai, the UNHRC chiefƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  in Geneva, another ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  vocal critique of Sri Lanka , besides being an ethnic Tamil was another who had never visited SL , despite a standing invitation from the government for over one year.

We owe it to the Ranaviru he said, to expose these deceptions and allegations without credibility by speakingƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  and writing,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to the international community, to your KiwiƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  friends ,ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to your MPƒÆ’‚¢ƒ¢-¡‚¬ƒ¢-¾‚¢s andƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  ministers Dr Rajapakse said.

I will make available for emailing a draft of a letter stating these with emails of suggestedƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚ ƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  recipientsƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  for you to forward them, he concluded .

Dr. RA Kalupahana immediate past president next showed a slide show of his recent visits to some of the AbhimansalasƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  and pledged his commitmentƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  to supportingƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  the Ranaviru and askedƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  for audience support as well.

The eveningƒÆ’-¡ƒ”š‚  concluded with a mix and mingle session over some light refreshments.

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