(Bishop Rayappu Joseph speaking at the protest)
Protest 2015 Members of the Tamil community protested in Jaffna on 24 February 2015, calling on the UN Human Rights Council to release the OHCHR Investigation on Sri Lanka (OISL) report in March.
Tamils from the Northern and Eastern Provinces converged in Jaffna insisting that UN Human Rights Council’s war crime report on Sri Lanka be published immediately and justice granted to Tamils while protesting against the internal investigation of war crimes.
The rally organised by Jaffna University Community started from the main entrance of the University of Jaffna and ended at the remains of the foundation of Thileepan monument at Nallur.
Mannar Bishop Rayappu Joseph, TNA Parliamentarians, Northern Provincial council members, Jaffna University Teachers, Civil Society representatives and a number of other political activists and dignitaries attended the rally. Sinhala students following academic activities at the University of Jaffna also participated in the protest.
After reading out the memorandum at the Thileepan memorial President of Jaffna University Teachers Association, A .Rasakumaran handed over two copies of the memorandum addressed to the UN Human Rights Commissioner to the Bishop of Mannar Rt Rev Rayappu Joseph and to the President of Saiva priests association, S. Vasudeva Kurukkal, to be delivered to the UN Resident Coordinator in Colombo, Mr. Subinay Nandy.
The memorandum reads as:
“We hereby express our frustration regarding the deferral of the OISL report that was due to be released at the upcoming UNHRC session in March to September 2015. As we are the ones affected we wish for the report to be released as planned. If we observe the structure that is in place in President Maithripala Sirisena government (which includes those who significantly contributed to the war) and the history of the failure of past internal investigation mechanisms to establish justice, it is clear that we do not have hope on any internal mechanisms to be created by this government.
Based on our long term experience of the Sinhala Buddhist leadership in Sri Lankan politics, Sri Lankan military officials will not be punished for any kind of crimes internally, we are aware of that. We are also aware international monitoring of an internal investigation will only result in a waste of time.
Votes from the Tamil people in large numbers for Maithri shows their feelings against Mahinda Rajapaksa, we did not expect a difference in the change of power.
In just one month after assuming duties, President Sirisena has proven that Tamil people cannot expect any change from this government. No noticeable actions have been taken by the Sirisena government on the serious problems faced by us, such as militarisation, resettlement, disappearances, and illicit detention of the political prisoners, neither have these issues been addressed in the 100 day plan proposed by the President. Sirisena government did not even hold any talk for the political solution”
– Eye SriLanka