Sri Lanka’s Tamils deserve to be heard

Re: Why Does The World Ignore Sri Lanka’s Crime?, Elizabeth Haq, Dec. 11.

As tens of thousands of Tamil lingered under fire on a narrow strip of beach in Sri Lanka, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon did nothing and then made a trip to war zone after war ended and issued utterly forgettable statements. Then under the guise of examining the situation — an earnest quest turned ridiculous, when UN released many statements of blatant denials that Tamils were ever subjected to such horror.

This case brings to mind the old legal maxim, inter arma enim silent leges, essentially, in times of war, the law falls silent. Those with conscience who tried to protect Tamils from unimaginable savagery during the last stage of the war — the few righteous ones, represent a flickering spark of humanity in a world that had gone dark. To kill the innocent in a vast scale is horrifying; to deny the horror is simply inhuman. We must show a fidelity to history and humanity. Let us not wait until the Museum of Human Rights curates a history of the persecution of Tamils in Sri Lanka to tell the their story. Tamils in Sri Lanka deserve to be heard by the international community, at least now as the pendulum of oppression has clearly moved against them. If we cannot do that, then the tyrants have shaped not only these victims view of the world, but their humanity.

Roy Ratnavel, Vancouver.

National Post

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