Sunday, 18 October 2009

Yet, Tamil Nadu Is So Much Closer.

A "mystery boat" called the Ocean Lady was located and intercepted by Canadian Forces and the RCMP off the northern coast of British Columbia. No visible numbers or flags were seen on the ship so it is likely a smuggling operation. Early news reports state that the ship carried 76 migrants. They are all male with some unconfirmed speculation that children may also be aboard.

Also unconfirmed is the ship's origin but Sri Lanka is the safe bet. Australia has seen its share of decrepit boats carrying illegal migrants to the county's shores and recently a boat carrying 260 Tamils from Sri Lanka was intercepted by Indonesia at Australia's request. You can read about it here.

The migrants being held in Indonesia were destined for Australia. The boat intercepted off the coast of B.C. is likely part of the same smuggling ring. The boat didn't get lost. The men aboard the ship admitted in interviews that their destination was Canada. So all in all, what we are looking at are Sri Lankan Tamils seeking to enter Canada illegally to make an asylum claim.

The fact that all of the migrants on board are men tells us that this is most likely a ploy to game the refugee system to get family and friends into the country. The successful asylum claim opens the door to seemingly endless chain migration where whole families have been transported to Canada out of one immigration application. The problem with this is that these immigrants do not need any pertinent job skills or language skills to immigrate to Canada. It is likely the 76 men on the Ocean Laddy do not have either as well.

Below is a quote made by a spokesperson for the Sri Lankan Tamils being held in Indonesia and reported by Australia's ABC news.

"Ask yourselves one question, if you had no home to go to, if you had no country to live in, if you had no place to go, if you had no country of your own - what would you do and how long would you stay in a boat before you were promised to enter a country that will give you asylum?" Alex said.

"How long will you go? How desperate will you be? Take a look at the picture today, look at my people, we're not only suffering back home, we're suffering here.

"We have no choice, we have no country to go back to, we cannot go back to Sri Lanka."

That statement is self serving. They are fishing for sympathy to gain quick and easy access to a wealthy western industrialized country like Australia or Canada without having to go through proper immigration channels which can be lengthy, costly, and no guarantee of success. The ABC report says that Australia was not their first choice. They say they chose Australia because it was the "cheapest and easiest place to get to, even if it means living in a Malaysian jungle for a month." Really? Cheaper and easier to get to then, say, Tamil Nadu?

Tamil Nadu is India's most southern state with a population of over 66 million people. Tamil is its official language, spoken by almost 90% of the population. Tamil Nadu is culturally, linguistically, and ethnically Tamil. It is also literally located across the street from Sri Lanka. So why spend a month in a Malaysian jungle to get to Australia when you can find safety in Tamil Nadu in less than a week?

India prides itself as being the largest democracy in the world. It's economy is growing with an emerging middle class. It may not be a super power (yet?) but it is a regional power and India is better placed than any other nation to accommodate Sri Lankan Tamils fleeing alleged persecution in Sri Lanka. So why are there more Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada than in India?

These people are not fleeing persecution. Their treatment in Sri Lanka is often over exaggerated. What persecuted people are allowed to have political parties hold seats in government or obtain passports to travel abroad? What persecuted people have official government documents printed in their native language? They may be fleeing poverty but that in of itself is not grounds for asylum. They want to immigrate but lack the attributes that will allow them to. Asylum seekers need nothing more than a good persecution story and a gullible ear. Sri Lanka's Tamils are not union members in Colombia.

Canada cannot allow any of the 76 men to successfully land as a refugee. They should be fed and given a health check then promptly returned to their country of origin. Rewarding this behaviour will encourage more of it. That's why there are over 250,000 Sri Lankan Tamils in Canada. Besides, how many LTTE members hiding among them? The LTTE have successfully set up a fund raising operation in Canada thanks to an abusable refugee system. Do we Canadians like being the land of trusting fools?

Here is the Toronto Star report on it.

To read why I think it was a mistake for Canada to accept so many Sri Lankan Tamil refugees read here.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

The quintessential Canadian niceness took another turn for the worse.

A news clip showed Mounties and/or border officials escorting these uninvited interlopers down a ship's gangplank to waiting buses WHILE SHELTERING THEIR HEADS WITH UMBRELLAS from a few raindrops!!

Yes... break into our country and they're treated with the same dignity and respect as visiting royalty!

Wait til the folks back home see this video clip -- the hordes will be climbing over each other to clamor aboard the next illegal freighter leaving Sri Lanka for Canada.

Anonymous said...

New development:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canada-to-take-hard-line-with-would-be-migrants/article1330110/

Nice to see Jason Kenney taking a tough stance on this. And of course it is no surprise that the Tamil state-within-a-state has sent an ambassador out to Vancouver to push for "compassion." The joys of multiculturalism.

UAE Perera said...

Asylum seekers will trade people smugglers for refuge

By Simon Santow and Geoff Thompson

Posted Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:00pm AEDT


A group of 255 Sri Lankans staging a hunger strike on a boat in Western Java say they will reveal the identities of people smugglers if Australia accepts them as refugees.

The Tamil asylum seekers say they have given up drinking fluids as well as eating food. Three of them have been taken to hospital as their stand-off with Indonesian authorities continues.

Local immigration chief Dr Harry Purwanto says the group is becoming divided, with some wanting to get off the boat and move into accommodation opposite the port and in the nearest town.

But the translator who calls himself Alex says the group remains united and defiant.

"There is not a majority who wants to come ashore," he said.

"There is actually not one person who wants to come ashore just yet. If you would like to come on board ... I will guarantee you they will all say no."

He says the group has remained in constant contact with people smugglers since being on the boat and is willing to give up the smugglers' identities if the Australian Government grants them asylum.

"We have made that agreement. We will help you apprehend anybody that is involved because there is a huge network out there and we will actually go as far as we can to stop this," he said.

"We will hand over all agents who are involved in this if the Australian Government accepts us."


'Bogus asylum seekers'

Alex has also hit back at accusations by the Sri Lankan high commissioner to Australia that the asylum seekers are not actually Sri Lankan residents.

Senaka Walgampaya said he had no sympathy for the "bogus" asylum seekers and that the world was being duped by their claims of persecution.

"These two people who have spoken to the media, this person called Alex and the young girl, from their accent it's quite obvious that they are not from Sri Lanka," he said.

"They may be of Sri Lankan origin but they have been living probably in the west for a long time because Alex's accent is quite a distinct American accent. It is not the accent of a Sri Lankan Tamil."

He says it is possible they have been living outside Sri Lanka for 10 to 15 years, and that they would face no persecution in Sri Lanka.

But Alex says he was educated in Jaffna at the American Mission College in English and worked at an American call centre in Chennai for three years where he was taught to speak with an American accent.


'Tough, hardline approach'

So far there is not much sympathy from Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd.

"I believe that it's a right for the Government to have a tough, hardline but humane approach," he said.

"The UNHCR processes I believe are fair. They've been around for a long time.

"These individual cases should be processed on their merits and that's what we have professional UNHCR staff to do, and it is irresponsible for any Prime Minister of Australia to send out a message of positive encouragement to people smugglers in the region."

Opposition Leader Malcolm Turnbull says none of this would have happened if Labor had not changed the nation's immigration policies.

"Mr Rudd unpicked the fabric of a border protection policy that had worked, that had proved its effectiveness by substantially eliminating this vile trade of people smuggling," he said.

"Mr Rudd can talk about hardline and tough and making no apologies as often as he likes but the apology he should make is to the Australian people."


http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/10/16/2716683.htm?section=justin

UAE Perera said...

From the above:

"But Alex says he was educated in Jaffna at the American Mission College in English and worked at an American call centre in Chennai for three years where he was taught to speak with an American accent."

LOL! He worked in Chennai for 3 years? So why didn’t he stay in Chennai? Whats wrong with Tamil Nadu?

According to this guy each of the economic refugees on board paid $15,000- $45,000 for the trip. With that kind of money they could be very rich in South India.

They are willing to go to New Zealand or Canada, anywhere except Sri Lank (I have no problem with that) http://tinyurl.com/ygkjesm.
But they do not want to go to Tamil Nadu!


Anyway hope Australia takes them and more! Oz has plenty of space for 3 million additional loyal citizens. And defiantly Canada should take their fair share (including the new arrivals). The Liberal Party could do with a little expansion of their Tamil vote blocks in the GTA.

Anonymous said...

UAE Perera says "And defiantly (sic) Canada should take their fair share (including the new arrivals)."

You won't be receiving much support here with that statement.

Sri Lankans of any stripe are NOT Canada's or New Zealand's or Australian's problem - end of story!

UAE Perera said...

Calm down it was said in jest.

You won't be receiving much support here with that statement.

Oh no! Guess i'll be loosing sleep at night now!

Sri Lankans of any stripe are NOT Canada's or New Zealand's or Australian's problem - end of story!

Absolutely! But do you see the irony? You wag your finger lecturing the natives (not limited to Sri Lanka) on how holy you are then end up with boat loads on your door step! How the propaganda boomerangs!

See below

Sri Lankan Tamil asylum seekers in the UK have accused the British government of double standards - trying to send them back to Sri Lanka on the one hand while accusing the island's authorities of human rights violations on the other.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8195368.stm

Even more ironic is that most of this propaganda was designed to save the LTTE/separatism in Sri Lanka and maintain the loyal "alternative" power,

PaxCanadiana said...

Jason Kenney says he will "play tough" but that remains to be seen. Mind you, the Conservative party cannot count on Sri Lankan Tamil block votes so nothing is lost by denying these bogus asylum seekers entry. On the other hand, if the article comments are any indication, it appears the Conservatives have lots to gain from the majority electorate. That appears to be the trade off here. Pander to Tamil block votes or score political points with the host majority population. We can talk about the rule of law, blah blah blah, but the immigration system is politicized so what's the point?

But Jason does point out correctly that most refugees arrive by plane than by boat. It's just that these boat stories get more attention. If Canadians are so irate over this then one can only imagine their reaction if they knew the truth about the immigration system.

So why didn’t he stay in Chennai? Whats wrong with Tamil Nadu?

Exactly. The spokesperson for the Tamils detained in Indonesia, Alex, has a North American English accent that he says he learned by working in a call center in Chennai. Well, that's the kind of work that is creating India's middle class.

I too noticed the choice of countries. Isn't it curious that Sri Lankan Tamils have nowhere else to go except Australia, New Zealand, Canada, The United States, or the U.K.? Why not India? Why not Tamil Nadu? How about Singapore? Malaysia? Why is it always wealthy western industrialized countries that are expected to take them? That question answers itself.

You wag your finger lecturing the natives (not limited to Sri Lanka) on how holy you are then end up with boat loads on your door step!

Point taken but mind you it is elite opinion harboured in newspaper editorial rooms, academia, and the ever so politically correct mind of the bends with the wind politician that wags their fingers the most. It is they who contributed to the creation of Canada's mess of an immigration system and lax refugee laws that invite and reward abuse.

All in all the arrival of 76 Sri Lankan Tamils seeking asylum in Canada is nothing new. Sri Lanka's Tamils have been abusing Canada's joke of a refugee system to immigrate to the country for decades now. These latest ones just happened to arrive by boat.

UAE Perera said...

Hello Pax.

Hope its alright if i borrow some of your space.

http://www.theage.com.au/national/thousands-more-tamils-to-come-20091019-h50f.html

Alex said a network of six smugglers to whom the asylum seekers on his boat agreed to pay $US4 million ($A4.3 million) was continuing to telephone people on board and influence their actions.



Where do you get that kind of money from Sri Lanka? Either you are a successful businessman, cheat/criminal, a politician or all three.

Its no secret that many bankrupt businessmen and other financial scammers, fake their deaths and "disappear" here to reappear in Western countries and claiming they were abducted (being Tamil is an added bonus). Many Tamil terrorists do this as well to escape justice (because that violates their HR). If you look at the link in the BBC article i provided in your last blog post One of "asylum seekers" -now with citizenship- says he was a "former rebel" who left the organisation but then was "abducted" by the Military after leaving, yet still managed to find his way to Britain. Now if we assume the "abduction" (aka an arrest) part is true did he really think because "he left" the LTTE the Security Forces are going to twiddle there thumbs while he waltz around Colombo?


The Tamils he is with flew to Singapore or Kuala Lumpur in small groups or alone before smugglers gathered them in a jungle camp to wait for the boat's departure.

Flew? Flew from where? Colombo Airport? Nothing knew there I suppose. Thousands of Tamils (not trying to be harsh but it is predominantly them) everyday make their pilgrimage to Western embassies creating massive lines, even blocking roads, whining about "persecution", "discrimination" and "genocide" and asking for asylum from the moment the embassies opens till it shuts. At which point they go home, or maybe catch a movie, visit a bar. (Some even bring their university degrees to bolster up their chances!)

PaxCanadiana said...
Point taken but mind you it is elite opinion harboured in newspaper editorial rooms, academia, and the ever so politically correct mind of the bends with the wind politician that wags their fingers the most. It is they who contributed to the creation of Canada's mess of an immigration system and lax refugee laws that invite and reward abuse.

October 21, 2009 11:46:00 EDT AM


That does not explain why the plain obvious or simple logic (two examples I have put above) fly over there heads! Where is the common sense?

Why not simply deport them back to Sri Lanka (personally I am not big on having them returned but for arguments sake), nothing is going to happen to them. Getting jobs is tough for everyone and the pay compared to the West is hugely different (even being a beggar in the West “earns” you more). I am really fed up with my country going through the mud all the time. Sri Lanka is a third world country its ridiculous to expect a utopia, they and preaches in the West have only ensured it will be a third world country for much longer.
If you were/are a member of the LTTE or assisted them, you can bet you will not be treated well, but tough shit, commit the crime do the time.

Anonymous said...

If they come to this country they should come the legal way. If not send them all home no ifs ands or buts period. They also should not be given everything they get now . Our parents had to work at whatever they could find , they where not given money or medical help when they came here in the 40s & 50s and they did just fine.To many people come here and sponge of the system and think we should bend over to acomadate them . If you dont like our ways GO THE HELL BACK TO WHERE YOU CAME FROM.