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  • Ten years since the war in Sri Lanka came to a brutal end, the Australian Tamil Congress (ATC) stands in solidarity with the Tamils in the island of Sri Lanka and vows to continue to strive for justice, peace and freedom for the Tamil people. The ATC joins 60 other organisations worldwide in endorsing the below statement:   On 18 May 2019, ten years since the Sri Lankan state’s genocide against the Tamil nation reached its peak, we stand in solidarity with our brethren in their quest for justice.    We believe that an international independent investigation is the only credible path...
  • 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...

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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...


Pressure Mounts on Labor gov't as Australian of the Year also backs calls

26th May 2011


“For over ten years I have been involved in the mental health care of very many Sri Lankans who have come to Australia seeking asylum from the civil war and the extensive use of torture and other human rights abuses that have occurred there. Most of my patients have been Tamil, however some have been Sinhalese or Muslim. Based on this knowledge of the situation in Sri Lanka in recent years, as seen through the eyes of my patients, all of whom have been granted asylum in Australia. I fully support the recent call from the UN Expert Panel for an independent investigation into war crimes in Sri Lanka, and respectfully urge the Australian government to support this call.”

Yours sincerely

Professor Patrick D McGorry AO

Australian political analyst casts spotlight on Rudd's duplicity

Silence on Sri Lanka screams of duplicity

Cynthia Banham

This week Sri Lanka celebrated the second anniversary of the end of its 26-year civil war by holding an international ''defeating terrorism'' conference. It is a kind of brag-fest, to talk about the lessons learnt in its brutal victory over the insurgent group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

There's one aspect, however, of the protracted battle that the Sri Lankan government does not like to talk about, how in the final stages - a United Nations ''panel of experts'' says - up to 40,000 civilians may have been massacred.

MP calls for independent war crimes investigation and acknowledges work of ATC

Greenway Electorate: Tamil Community

The Tamil population in Greenway is one of the largest in the country and one that is a great contributor to the multicultural fabric of our wider community. In recent times, the Tamil people have come into the consciousness of the Western world due to the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka. This conflict has been documented in great depth and is now beginning to receive the real acknowledgement it deserves around the world.

Ms ROWLAND (Greenway) (16:14): I rise today to acknowledge and affirm my respect for the Tamil population living in my electorate of Greenway and to mention a number of very important issues surrounding the Australian Tamil community. The electorate of Greenway is an extremely diverse and vibrant place and one that I am very privileged to represent. A large part of this diversity is the some 3,000 strong Tamil community. I say '3,000' but—as I have been told by Tamil community leaders, and I have no doubt as to this—this number is, in fact, far higher in reality.

People in this place were afforded the opportunity last week to visit the Sound of Silence photo exhibition, which I was privileged to host, thanks to the Australian Tamil Congress. This exhibit displayed a collection of photographs taken by Melbourne documentary photographer Shelly Morris during her visit to the northern parts of Sri Lanka in late 2010. This powerful and shocking exhibit allowed a rare insight into the human face of the civil war in Sri Lanka, and I thank members from all sides for taking the time out of their busy schedules in this place to visit this exhibit, including the Special Minister of State.

Recently, the UK's Channel 4 News continued this awareness raising regarding the Sri Lankan civil war when it screened extended footage of executions of Tamils by the Sri Lankan military and other crimes against humanity. This footage was shown during the most recent United Nations Human Rights Council session with the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings, Christof Heyns, announcing that the evidence in the footage amounted to 'definitive war crimes'. In light of this we must look to move Tamil relations—and justice for Tamils—forward in a constructive and meaningful way. The federal government has consistently maintained that accountability will be a crucial part of reconciliation and lasting peace in Sri Lanka.

While the Sri Lankan government has commenced some initiatives to improve conditions in parts of the country, there must be an external examination of atrocities committed by military forces on both sides. Australia must now join other Western nations in pushing for an international independent investigation into war crimes in Sri Lanka. With the persecution of people in Sri Lanka causing thousands of people to flock to Australia in search of asylum, peace and stability in the island of Sri Lanka will also benefit Australia.

I would like to commend the work of individuals such as Ms Varuni Balachandar of the Australian Tamil Congress and Dr Mano Mohan and Mr P Sivasubramaniam of the Australian Tamil Electoral Lobby for their hard work and dedication to achieving and ensuring a peaceful outcome for all Sri Lankan people. I particularly acknowledge their ongoing volunteer work within my community of Greenway.

ABC TV - 7:30 Report - Atrocities in Sri Lanka

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Channel 4 - Sri Lanka's Killing Fields

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