Tuesday, 6 November 2007

Canadian Tamils mourn the slain leader of an outlawed terrorist organization


`We feel that peace died with him'
Opposition MPs urge action as thousands gather at memorial for key peace negotiator
Nov 06, 2007 04:30 AM
Bill Taylor
staff reporter

White-clad children danced in the pouring rain, opposition MPs demanded a "meaningful" reaction from Prime Minister Stephen Harper and, his body racked by sobs, S.P. Ravi shared his grief over the death of a political leader who was also his younger brother.

S.P. Thamilchelvan, second-in-command and chief negotiator of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the guerrilla group fighting for a Tamil homeland in Sri Lanka, was killed Friday by a Sri Lankan military air strike that reportedly took out half a dozen top Tiger leaders.

Canada officially regards the Tigers as a terrorist organization.

Last night, thousands of Tamils from all over the GTA flocked to Markham Fairgrounds for a three-hour gathering to honour Thamilchelvan with prayer, speeches and music. An hour after it started, there were still traffic jams as people waited to get in.

As a huge poster of his brother was still being hung behind the stage and with someone holding an umbrella over him, Ravi, 44, told the crowd in Tamil that Canada had a responsibility to respect human rights in Sri Lanka and the aspirations of the Tamil minority.


Ravi lives in Markham, where he works in a law office. He said his brother was the negotiator people on both sides most respected.


Borys Wrzesnewskyj, Liberal MP for Etobicoke Centre, and Jim Karygiannis, Liberal member for Scarborough-Agincourt, both made speeches.

Read the whole article at Toronto Star.

I am not surprised to learn that the brother of the slain LTTE leader lives in Canada. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that many high ranking LTTE leaders have relatives in Canada.

Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada are a case point illustrating the joke that is our nation's refugee system. The vast majority of them are not conventional refugees as outlined by the United Nations but are in fact economic migrants who lied to the Canadian people and our government.

Sri Lanka is an island nation of about 19.6 million people. It is located just of the southern tip of India. The two main ethnic groups are Sinhalese and Tamil with the Sinhalese constituting the majority. These two groups share a troubled history continued with the current civil war that was ignited by the LTTE in the mid 1970s who, incidentally, continue to break cease fires. Tamils have suffered discrimination at the hands of the Sinhalese and are fighting for a separate homeland in the north east of Sri Lanka. This is where most of the fighting is concentrated. If one were a Tamil one could go to southern Sri Lanka to flee the fighting where there are parts where Tamils form a large minority. For instance about thirty per cent of the residents of the capital city of Colombo, which is the home of famed British science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke, are Tamil and about forty per cent are Sinhalese with other minority groups making up the difference. That means that about 200,000 Tamils live in Colombo, a city with a population of about 642,000 people. However there are more Tamils living in Canada then there are living in Colombo. As a matter of fact Canada is home to the largest collection of Sri Lankan Tamils outside of Sri Lanka. Why is that? The answer is simple: refugee.

Canada has the most lax refugee system in the world due to the Singh decision and Sri Lankan Tamils gamed it for all it was worth all the while contribution to a costly refugee back log and denying places to legitimate refugees. Tamils are not legitimate refugees. If internal flight is an option for a refugee than a refugee can be sent back and internal flight is an option to Tamils fleeing the fighting. They can go to Colombo. Refugees are also expected to make their claim in the first safe port. Canada has no direct link to Sri Lanka. India does. The Indian state of Tamil Nadu is home to 85 million people who are Tamil, who speak Tamil, and who form the majority of the populace. The state of Tamil Nadu is also, literally, located right across the street from Sri Lanka. So why would Tamils relocate themselves half way around the world to a northern country that is linguistically, ethnically, and culturally unfamiliar and has no historical connection to them whatsoever when the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, a place that has a familiar culture, language, and ethnicity is located nearby? The reason is simple: Canada is an advance first world nation that is also "the land of trusting fools." Canada's acceptance rate for Sri Lankan refugees is 76%. This is in comparison with the U.K. with an acceptance rate of about 2% and Germany with about 4%. Armed with the Singh decision Canada became the choice mark for Tamils who wanted to queue jump their way into a first world nation. Once they got in they started sponsoring relatives. Even today the acceptance rate for Sri Lankan refugees is 76%. Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada illustrate why Canada needs to reform its refugee system. It can start by repealing the Singh decision. Canada can also stop accepting Sri Lankans as refugees and start sending them back.

The federal Liberals for years refused to list the LTTE as a terrorist organization, an organization that pioneered suicide bombing I might add, while most of the western world did. The reason is that Tamils can swing the votes in six federal ridings. This is why federal Liberals Borys Wrzesnewskyj, Liberal MP for Etobicoke Centre, and Jim Karygiannis, Liberal member for Scarborough-Agincourt, both made speeches. They were speaking to their core support group. In effect they don't represent Canadians in Ottawa. They represent Tamils.

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