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Dossier on Sri Lanka

“We met in very difficult circumstances”

LUA meeting

Monday 8 June 2009

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Left alliance met on 20th May at the Teachers’ Mansion at 2 pm. There were around 70 delegates, representing groups Sinhala, Tamil and Muslim through out the country.

This meeting was called after the press conference to pass a resolution to condemn blood shed and demand for immediate cease fire. But we met in very different and difficult circumstances

Alliance started as a support group for our election effort. In that we obtained 4000 less 3 votes in Colombo district. All consider that as a victory in the circumstances. Left Front is thankful to all those who helped; and attempt were made to extend the alliance to include other left groups including the United Socialist Party and the New Democratic Party. USP participated in the meeting but was not prepared to be in the committee. It will participate in activities depending on their estimation. NDP did not come. All others agreed to appoint a committee to coordinate future activities.

The meeting was chaired by Patric, Chamil and Stalin. All group leaders were allowed to express their views and then the open discussion took place. After a very inspiring discussion it was decided immediately look into continued repression, disappearances, refugees and political prisoners; also the proper resettlement and release of land taken under high security.

General opinion was that the question of devolution and autonomy for Tamil homeland may not come up as an issue for another 3 or 4 months because of general suffering. So, first problem for the government will be about human rights and welfare of the people who suffered under the war. It includes welfare of the Sinhala families of soldiers wounded or dead and Muslims displaced by the LTTE. We should intervene in all these issues.

It was decided to

1. write to the Inspector General of Police to look into the problem of harassment of Tamils, Muslims and oppositional elements by the victory demonstrators; in particular onthe day of celebration 22 Friday when over 100 thousand are expected to demonstrate in Colombo.

2. Prepare a perspective document.