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  • May 2019 marks a decade since the final days of the war in Sri Lanka, a period which saw thousands of people killed and disappeared as Sri Lanka accelerated its genocide against the Tamils. Despite two UN initiated reports, several UNHuman Rights Council resolutions and a multitude of reports by human rights organisations, Tamil victims and survivors are no closer to receiving justice. What alternative paths exist for Tamil victims and survivors? Is a hybrid mechanism possible? Should a fully international tribunal be sought?Join us as we explore these questions in conversation with Dr Helen...
  • The Australian Tamil Congress (ATC) expresses its disappointment on the shortcomings of resolution 40/1 ‘Promoting reconciliation, accountability and human rights in Sri Lanka’ adopted at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC), as it fails to set a clear pathway for accelerated progress on achieving transitional justice and accountability for mass atrocity crimes committed in Sri Lanka. There have been seven such resolutions with Sri Lanka itself co-sponsoring the last three. However, ten years since the war which saw the peak of mass atrocity crimes committed against the Tamil population,...

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  • 22-04-2019
    The Australian Tamil Congress (ATC) deeply condemns the attacks carried out on churches and hotels in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday 21 April 2019 which have resulted in least 207 dead and many more injured.  The ATC is saddened at the loss of innocent lives and stands in solidarity with the victims and their loved ones.  Sri Lanka has a long history of religious extremism and perpetrators of religious violence have been known to act with impunity. As recent as 27 March 2019 the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Bachelet, while underlining the importance of accountability to the...
  • 11-01-2019
    Yet another New Year dawns almost 10 years since the worst of the genocidal onslaught against the Tamil people by the Sri Lankan state with no sign of the victims receiving justice in the near future. More than three years after UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Resolution 30/1 on Sri Lanka, to-date Sri Lanka has taken very few steps to fulfil its obligations and none of those implemented have produced any substantive outcomes for those most affected by the war. The current President and the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka have made repeated statements rejecting some of the most important...

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Media coverage on Vaddukoddai Referendum

22 April 2010

ABC Radio Connect Asia : Australian Tamil referendum polls support for independent homeland

18 April 2010

SBS TV News : Tamils vote in referendum

6 April 2010

ABC TV News

Tamil Refugees

Mr IAN COHEN [5.00 p.m.]: I refer to the dilemma of the Tamil in Sri Lanka and their vote on a solution to asylum seeking problems. A landmark referendum was held last weekend to establish whether the Australian Tamil community supports the creation of an independent State Tamil homeland. More than 10,000 people registered to vote and more than 90 per cent voted in favour. The initiative is based on the Vaddukoddai Resolution—a mandate for independence drafted by Tamil leaders in 1976 in Sri Lanka, only to be rejected by the Sri Lankan Government, which conveniently changed the constitution to make it illegal to espouse for an independent State. The persecution and oppression of the Tamil people by the Sri Lankan State has seen an influx in asylum seekers arriving by boat from the island. Australian Tamils feel this initiative will give them a chance to democratically show their view on how the root cause of the problem can be resolved.

International Crisis Group (CG ) report War Crimes in Sri Lanka

Report damns Tamil returns

ABC AM – Sri Lanka not safe for war crimes witnesses

The International Crisis Group has called on Australia to support an inquiry into alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka.

A Crisis Group report found tens of thousands of Tamils were killed or wounded and hundreds of thousands were denied food and medical care during the last five months of the Sri Lankan civil war.

The report says there are reasonable grounds to believe both the Sri Lankan security forces and the Tamil Tigers committed war crimes last year.

The Crisis Group has urged Australia to grant asylum or protected status to potential witnesses.

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