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Stop Genocide of Tamils in Sri Lanka

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Addressed to: The President of Sri Lanka, Colombo, Sri Lanka The Foreign Minister of Sri Lanka, Colombo, Sri Lanka The Ambassador of Sri Lanka to United States of America, Washington DC, USA The Ambassador of Sri Lanka to United Nations, New York, New York, USA The Prime Minister of India, New Delhi, India The Foreign Minister of India, New Delhi, India The Ambassador of India to United States of America, Washington DC, USA The Ambassador of Sri Lanka to United Nations, New York, New York, USA The Indian High Commissioner, New York, New York, USA The Secretary of State, United States Government, Washington DC, USA The Secretary General of United Nations, New York City, New York, USA The United Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees, Geneva, Switzerland Your Excellencies: We, the citizens of the world concerned with genocide and torture and attacks on the dignity of the human person, organizations and individuals listed here, are distressed by the reports of genocidal loss of life, injury to the civilians, and starvation deaths in Sri Lankan territories where Sri Lankan Army (SLA) is conducting its operations. We are outraged at the latest report of a makeshift hospital having been hit by SLA rockets killing over 64 patients, their relatives and medical staff with many more injured in second such attack at the same hospital in two days(http://www.tamilnet.com/art.htmlcatid=13&artid=29240.) It is alleged to have happened despite, as reported, International Committee of Red Cross had provided the co-ordinates of the hospital to SLA. If the details of this instance of carnage are true then it qualifies as a deliberate attempt to commit genocide and a war-crime. We, condemn all similar heinous actions by Sri Lankan Army and urge international community to take note. We appeal to Sri Lankan authorities to immediately order SLA to desist from any further armed action against any civilians even if there is a suspicion of armed groups hiding among them. Further, we urge Sri Lankan government to order its Army to desist from any actions that lead to mass-displacement and mass-starvation of its civilian population in any of its territories for such actions are deemed war-crimes. We urge the Sri Lankan government to exercise maximum restrain in its military operations conducted by Sri Lankan Army (SLA), otherwise, it will be held responsible by all relevant international authorities, deemed liable for war-crimes by international community and the functionaries of Sri Lankan state could be held culpable in international criminal court system for genocide and war-crimes. Therefore, we take this opportunity to remind the Sri Lanka government that the Article 54(1) of Additional Protocol I to the Four Geneva Conventions of 1949 sets forth a rule of customary international humanitarian law that obligates every state in the world: ‘Starvation of civilians as a method of warfare is prohibited. The starvation of civilians as a method of warfare is a war crime.’ Every contracting party to the Geneva Conventions and Protocol has the obligation under Common Article 1 thereof ‘to respect’ the Conventions and Protocol themselves and ‘to ensure respect’ for the Conventions and Protocol ‘in all circumstances’ by other contracting parties such as Sri Lanka under current circumstances. Furthermore, starvation of civilians as a method of warfare can be deemed an act of genocide as defined by Article II (c) of the 1948 Genocide Convention: ‘Deliberately inflicting on the group (in this case, Sri Lankan Tamils) conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.’ Every contracting state party to the Genocide Convention has the obligation ‘to prevent’ genocide by Sri Lanka against the Tamils as required by Article I thereof. Therefore, every state party to the Geneva Conventions and Protocol as well as to the Genocide Convention have the solemn obligation to terminate Government of Sri Lanka's starvation of Sri Lankan Tamils as a method of warfare. Under the current ‘circumstances’ one of the most effective means this can be done is for those states with the appropriate capability and resources in the region(e.g., India and United States) to urgently sponsor the airdrop of food, medicines and other humanitarian relief supplies to the starving Sri Lankan Tamils in its northern coastal regions. We, hereby call upon these states and in particular India and the United States to fulfill their obligations under the Geneva Conventions and Protocols as well as under the Genocide Convention by launching an immediate humanitarian air-drop relief operation for the benefit of the starving Tamils in all Sri Lankan territories where Sri Lankan military is operations have lead to mass-displacement, civilian injuries and mass-starvation. Sincerely, Citizens of the World


Americans Against Genocide (AAG) Alliance for Secular & Democratic Southeast Asia Boston Muslims Against Violence & War Chinmoy Bannerjee Federation of Tamil Sangams of North America, Inc. (FeTNA) Harvard Muslims Against Violence & War Hari Sharma Rev. Jim Chestnut International Alliance Against Genocide Mary Ganguli Muslim Jewish Alliance for Peace Nation Builders & Civilization Movers Network of Progressive Muslims Raju Rajagopal Rick Ufford-Chase, Executive Director, Presbyterian Peace Fellowship Shahid Khan Shaik Ubaid South Asian Network for Secularism & Democracy (www.SANSAD.org) Thillai Kumaran Wasim Khan (www.khan4senate.net) World Thamil Organization, Inc. (WTO)


www.khan4senate.net www.sansad.org
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