Photos of Sampanthan, Sumanthiran set ablaze

Pro-LTTE groups protest opposite US mission in London

Postponement of UNHRC
 War Crimes report on SL


by Shamindra Ferdinando

Protesters opposite US embassy in London on Wednesday
(Picture courtesy TamilGuardian)

Pro-LTTE‚Äągroups set ablaze pictures of TNA heavyweights R. Sampanthan and M.A. Sumanthiran opposite the US embassy in London on Wednesday, demanding that Washington pressures the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to submit the war crimes dossier on Sri Lanka at its next sessions scheduled to begin in March.


The protesters rejected Sri Lanka’s assurance that a domestic inquiry would be held in keeping with UN standards. They accused Sampanthan and Sumanthiran of collaborating with the Sri Lankan government.

The London protest coincided with the TNA demonstration in Jaffna demanding the presentation of the report during the March session as promised by the former UN rights chief Navaneetham Pillay.

The TNA and Diaspora groups have vowed to intensify their campaign with a major protest in Geneva next month.

After having received representations from the Sri Lankan government, the UNHRC deferred the report by six months.

Both Jaffna and London protesters declared their support for Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran’s call for a wider UN investigation into what he called as genocide of Tamils since 1948. The UNHRC ignored a petition by a grouping of 15 Diaspora organizations which joined CM Wigneswaran’s call for the report in March as well as an enhanced investigation.

Political sources said that the Diaspora activists had never set ablaze pictures of TNA leaders though they sometimes disapproved of Sampanthan’s strategies. They earned the wrath of an influential section of the TNA as well as the LTTE rump for participating in national day celebrations in Colombo.

Sources said that a rift in the TNA over delaying of the war report widened as South Africa revived an ambitious project to bring Sri Lanka and the TNA back to the negotiating table. South African Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Ms. Nomaindia Mfeketo and South African High Commissioner to India G.Q.M. Doidge are among a team tasked with discussing ways and means of enhancing the relations between the two parties, sources said.

The visiting delegation received a briefing from Opposition leader Nimal Siripala de Silva on Feb 25 at the Colombo Taj as regards the support provided by the SLFP-led UPFA to the new government. Responding to a query from Ms Mfeketo, the Opposition Leader emphasized that the previous government was able to undertake a major development programme due to the eradication of terrorism.

Sources said that the South Africans would have to make an effort to settle differences among TNA leaders before it could return to the negotiating table.

animated gif
Processing Request
Please Wait...