Australian Tamils and supporters from Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra will gather in the Australian capital today to join the escalating international demand for action against the brutal dictatorship of the Sri Lankan president, Mahinda Rajapaksa.

“We are going to converge on Canberra on Wednesday to let the Australian Government know that the lack of action on atrocities committed by the Rajapaksa regime is an international disgrace,” said Campaign for Tamil Justice spokesman, Trevor Grant.

“The UN Human Rights Commission is meeting right now on Sri Lanka and the word is that there will be another insipid resolution issued, with support from Australia. If this is the case, this resolution will be another cover for the Sri Lankan Government to continue its persecution of Tamils and avoid accountability for its horrendous war crimes and crimes against humanity at the end of the civil war in 2009.

“The UN has said that at least 40,000 innocent Tamil civilians were deliberately killed by the Sri Lankan military and so far no-one has been investigated, let alone called to account for this evil crime. It is time for those charged with the responsibility for human rights to fulfill their duty and take action against Rajapaksa and his henchmen.”

As greater awareness about the evil deeds of the Sri Lankan Government spreads throughout the world, protests continue to spring up everywhere.

In the past few days eight Indian students have started a hunger strike in Chennai demanding a referendum on Tamil self-determination and action on Sri Lankan Government war crimes; brave Tamil families from Jaffna have gone on a protest ride to Colombo to bring attention to their disappeared relatives, only to be stopped and threatened by the Army and police; UK women marched through the streets of London on International Women’s Day to highlight the rape and torture of Tamil women by the Sri Lankan military and police.

“Now we are joining them at this critical time in Tamil history,” said Grant.” The Rajapaksa regime has a carefullyplanned program of genocide and ethnic-cleansing of Tamils under way. It is disguised as the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission, a report that is now being cited by the US, Australia and other countries as a guiding document for the future in Sri Lanka, even though it has been condemned as weak and ineffective by the UN.

“The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, sat on the commission which looked into the Rwandan genocide in the 1990s. Recently she warned that the lessons from Rwanda, where 800,000 innocent people were murdered while the world looked on, have not been learned with Sri Lanka. This is a loud and unambiguous call for firm and urgent action by Australia.”

Protest details: DATE: 12.00p.m., Wednesday, March 13, VENUE: Front of Parliament House, Canberra.

For further information contact Campaign for Tamil Justice: Trevor Grant: 0400 597 351, S.Sribalan: 0452 224 205.