Former senator S Ramakrishnan and civil societies in the country want the Malaysian government to refer Sri Lanka to the war crimes tribunal for atrocities against Tamils in the final days of its decades long civil war.
The DAP leader also suggested that Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak denounce economic ties with Sri Lankan government and refrain from attending the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) meeting in Sri Lanka later this year. In addition he said the Commonwealth leaders should through consensus also expel Sri Lanka from the group.
Ramakrishan’s call for Malaysia to scale back on its economic ties was in direct reference to CIMB banking group and Rating Agency Malaysia’s (RAM) move to open branches in Sri Lanka. “They should pull out their business in order to show solidarity support against the war crimes committed by the Sri Lankan government,” he said.
He said this after an open discussion at the ‘No Fire Zone’ documentary screening organised by Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) last night at the Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall here.
Also present at the screening were Subang MP R Sivarasa and former Teluk Intan MP M Manogaran.
The documentary by British director Callum Macrae, depicted war crimes committed by the Sri Lankan troops against ethnic Tamil minority on a day-to-day account of the nation’s civil war.
Earlier this month, joint organisers Komas, Suaram and the KL & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall Civil Right Committee (KLSCH CRC) had screened the movie, but Home Ministry officials gatecrashed and stopped the screening.
This time around, the screening organised by LFL went on smoothly without any disruption from the Home Ministry officials. During mid-way of the screening, around 30 Home Ministry officials arrived at the scene, but then left the hall after 10 minutes.
After the screening, Macrae joined the audience for a 10-minutes Q&A session via Skype.
Macrae claimed that the documentary was based on real facts and daily recordings of footage.”I am not a fan of LTTE, but the war crimes committed against the ethnic Tamil is speechless “Innocent people became victims of the civil war, ” said Macrae. Macrae also alleged that the Sri Lankan government-controlled media twisted the real facts about the no-fire buffer zone.
Meanwhile Manogaran called on the BN and Pakatan MPs to continue to lead the parliamentary caucus on the Sri Lanka conflict. The caucus was formed at the end of last year and was then headed by present Tourism Minister Nazri Aziz. “This caucus will be a good platform to continue putting international pressure on the Sri Lankan government, ” said Manogaran.
Meanwhile Sivarasa said he will hold further talks with BN and Pakatan MPs to re-enlighten the works carried out by the caucus. He also suggested that the civil societies through NGOs should work together in putting greater international pressure to boycott Sri Lanka in economic terms and bring responsible warlords to war crime tribunal.
Last night also saw Komas,LFL and the KLSCH CRC making similar calls for retribution on Sri Lanka.( Free Malaysia Today)