Sunday, 26 October 2014
Home Tamil Affairs International Affairs Editorial Opinion Feature Culture & Community Interviews
Latest Entries:
International Affairs
Tamil Guardian 25 October 2014
Farc militants send in top commanders as 'political artillery' for successful negotiations with Colombia
High ranking commanders from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) joined the latest rounds of peace-talks with the Colombian government on Friday, in what has been seen as a positive step in negotiations.

The Farc militants labelled their commanders "political artillery" that could ensure successful negotiations, reports The Guardian.

Speaking about their aims at the next round of negotiations, the Farc spokesperson at the negotiations, Ivan Marquez, said,

“This is our guerrilla command for normalisation, which will explore paths toward an agreement with officers of the army, the navy, the air force and the national police. This will allow us to reach an armistice that the victims are demanding and the nation is clamouring for.”


Tamil Guardian 25 October 2014
US calls on Israel to investigate killing of Palestinian-American youth
The US State Department called for a transparent investigation into clashes on Friday where Israeli forces shot and killed a 14 year old Palestinian-American, reports Reuters.

The US State Department, spokesperson called for a “speedy and transparent investigation.”

“The United States expresses its deepest condolences to the family of a US citizen minor who was killed by the Israeli Defence Forces during clashes in Silwad on October 24,”said Jen Psaki.

Psaki added that US officials would remain closely engaged with local authorities who were tasked with carrying out an investigation.

Owah Hammand, was shot in the head, in the village Silwad, north of the Palestinian seat of Ramallah.


Tamil Guardian 25 October 2014
Rwanda bans BBC broadcasts in protest of genocide documentary
The Rwandan government suspended all BBC radio broadcasts on in protest of the organisation’s recent documentary about the 1994 genocide.

The Rwandan Utilities Regulatory Authority, citing public complaints of “incitement, hatred, divisionism, genocide denial and revision,” announced the suspension of all local language broadcasts of the BBC on Friday, reports The Guardian.

A BBC spokesperson responded on Friday, stating, “the Rwandan genocide raises extremely painful issues but the BBC has a duty to investigate difficult and challenging subjects. We believe this programme, which was produced by a BBC current affairs team in London and broadcast in the UK, made a valuable contribution to the understanding of the tragic history of the country and the region.”

The spokesperson added the BBC regretted calls for sanctions against it and criticised the “threat of direct measures against an independent broadcaster.”


Tamil Guardian 25 October 2014
EU sanctions on Russia to remain in place
European Union sanctions will continue to be placed on Russia due to failures in observing the ceasefire between Ukrainian troops and Russia backed rebels, the German Chancellor told reporters on Friday.

“When you’ve had more than 200 people killed you cannot say the cease-fire has been accepted,” said Angela Merkel.

Both sides in eastern-Ukraine conflict committing atrocities says Amnesty International
(20 Oct 2014)

Tamil Guardian 25 October 2014
US investigates doctors' claims of chemical weapons usage by Islamic State militants
Claims made by Iraqi doctors and police officers that Islamic State militants are using chemical weapons are being investigated by US officials reports the Telegraph.

Doctors working in the conflict area said that at least eleven police officers had shown symptoms of poisoning by chlorine gas when brought into hospital.

Commenting on the allegations the US secretary of state, said,
"We are seeking additional information in order to be able to determine whether or not we can confirm it.”
"The use of any chemical weapons is an abhorrent act, it's against international law, and these recent allegations underscore the importance of the work that we are currently engaged in,” added John Kerry.

Tamil Guardian 24 October 2014
Rwandan parliament calls for genocide denial charges against BBC documentary producers
Rwandan parliament passed a resolution calling on its government to ban a BBC documentary on Rwanda and charge the producers with genocide denial, on Friday.

The BBC has denied that any part of the programme constitutes to “a denial of the genocide against the Tutsis.”

The documentary, “Rwanda's Untold Story”, contained allegations that Kagame and his then RPF armed organisation had shot down the Hutu president Juvenal Habyarimana, sparking the genocide which killed some 800,000 people.

Rwanda's president, earlier this month accused the documentary of "further emboldened the génocidaires, all their supporters and those who collaborate with them."

A BBC spokesperson earlier said,

    “The BBC strongly refutes the suggestion that any part of the programme constitutes a ‘denial of the genocide against the Tutsi’. There are repeated references to the mass killings of Tutsis by Hutus in 1994 and that this constituted genocide. The programme also includes an interview with the Director of the Genocide Museum at Murambi, a Tutsi and genocide survivor, and a convicted Hutu genocidaire who spoke of his part in the killing of thousands of Tutsis.”

Rwandan president accuses BBC of 'genocide denial'
(15 October 2014)

BBC accused of giving voice to genocide deniers by Rwandan survivors groups
  (11 October 2014)
Tamil Guardian 23 October 2014
UN to investigate attacks on Gaza facilities
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has announced that a commission is to be set up that will investigate attacks on UN facilities in Gaza, during Israel's offensive this summer.

Speaking to the UN Security Council on Tuesday, Ban said the inquiry will investigate the attacks on the facilities, as well as reports that Hamas militants were storing weapons in the buildings.

Though no details of the inquiry were offered, Stephane Dujarric, the Secretary General’s spokesman said further details would be offered at a later official announcement.

UN-run schools were hit by shelling during the conflict, drawing international condemnation.

See our earlier posts:

US condemns UN school shelling as 'disgraceful', fighting rages on in Gaza (03 August 2014)

UN & US condemn shelling of UN school in Gaza (30 July 2014)

UN run school in Gaza hit by shelling (24 July 2014)
Tamil Guardian 23 October 2014
Blackwater guards found guilty of Iraqi murders
Four Blackwater Worldwide guards have been found guilty of the murder of 14 unarmed Iraqis in 2007 by a US federal jury in Washington this week.

The four were convicted on murder, manslaughter and weapons charges, with Ronald C. Machen Jr., the United States attorney in Washington, saying, “this verdict is a resounding affirmation of the commitment of the American people to the rule of law, even in times of war.”

“Seven years ago, these Blackwater contractors unleashed powerful sniper fire, machine guns and grenade launchers on innocent men, women and children,” he added. “Today, they were held accountable for that outrageous attack and its devastating consequences for so many Iraqi families.”

Blackwater, a US private security firm had around 1,000 contractors in Iraq, with many reported incidents of shootings. The most infamous of these was the 2007 murders, which saw more than four dozen Iraqi citizens fly to Washington to give evidence.

See more form the New York Times here and here.
Tamil Guardian 23 October 2014
Boko Haram reportedly abducts at least 25 girls
Islamist militant group Boko Haram has reportedly abducted at least 25 girls in an attack on villages in north-eastern Nigeria.

The latest report of the abduction comes after the Nigerian military announced a ceasefire with Boko Haram last week. The deal would reportedly have involved the release of more than 200 girls who were kidnapped in April as part of negotiations.

Meanwhile a bomb blast in the northern Bauchi state killed at least 5 people. No one has claimed responsibility for the blast.

See more from the BBC here.

Also see our earlier post:

Militants storm Nigerian villages after government ceasefire with Boko Haram (18 October 2014)
Tamil Guardian 23 October 2014
'Canada will never be intimidated' says PM after parliament attack
The Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper, stressed that "Canada would never be intimidated", following an attack on parliament yesterday, which left a soldier dead.

A gunman, who has since been identified as a Muslim convert names Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, launched an attack on Wednesday morning, killing a soldier, Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, at the National Memorial in Ottawa. The gunman later died of gun shot injuries.

“Attacks on our security personnel and on our institutions of governance are by their very nature attacks on our country, on our values, on our society,” Harper said in a televised address on Wednesday night. 

“But let there be no misunderstanding. We will not be intimidated. Canada will never be intimidated. In fact this will lead us to strengthen our resolve.”

"This will lead us to strengthen our resolve and redouble our efforts and those of our national security agencies to take all necessary steps to identify and counter threats," he added. 


Editorial Tamil Guardian 22 September 2014
The eyes of the world were on Scotland last week, as the Scottish people voted in a historic referendum on independence. The majority of Scots (55%) chose to keep their homeland as part of the United Kingdom with the promise of more devolved powers, [more]

Editorial Tamil Guardian 12 September 2014
Renewing resolve
The start of the UN Human Rights Council's 27th session this week saw the welcome reaffirmation of resolve to pursue accountability for mass atrocities in Sri Lanka through a UN inquiry from the newly appointed High Commissioner for Human Rights, [more]

Tamil Guardian 01 October 2014
'Why Sri Lanka's detention of Balenderan Jayakumari is so sinister' - Callum Macrae
Documentary maker Callum Macrae says Sri Lanka has continued with its “particularly sinister” arrest and intimidation of possible witnesses to a United Nations investigation into mass atrocities in Sri Lanka – including of Tamil disappearances activist Balendran Jayakumari - in a piece in the Huffington Post. Macrae, [more]

Tamil Guardian 02 August 2014
‘Legal Avenues to Prosecute a US Citizen for War Crimes—The Case of Gotabaya Rajapaksa’

Ryan Goodman, Professor of Law and Co-Chair of the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at New York University School of Law has called on the United States to prosecute Gotabhaya Rajapaksa for war crimes, [more]

Arani Kumaran Tamil Guardian 28 June 2014
Review: 'This Land Belongs to the Army'
'This Land Belongs to the Army’ is a strong documentary about the manner in which the lands in the traditional Tamil homelands of the North-East of the island of Sri Lanka have been appropriated by the government and the military. Made by Indian journalist and filmmaker Maga Tamizh Prabhagaran, [more]

Tamil Guardian 01 October 2014
UK Ministers and MPs rally behind Tamil calls for justice

Tamil Guardian 26 September 2014
Remembering Thileepan
Today marks the 27th anniversary of the death of Lt. Col Thileepan, after he fasted to death on hunger strike, appealing to the Indian government to honour pledges made to the Tamil people. [more]

Tamil Guardian 24 September 2014
#GetThePicture campaign maps Sri Lankan state massacres of Tamils
The United States Tamil Political Action Council released an updated version of their #GetThePicture campaign map this week, [more]

  Culture & Community
Tamil Guardian 24 October 2014
Canada's York Uni introduces landmark Tamil studies award

Canada's York University has established the country's first ever scholarship graduate award in Tamil studies last month. [more]

Tamil Guardian 19 October 2014
UK Tamil students hold workshop on university application process for Year 13s
Photographs TSI The Tamil Students Initiative (TSI), a network of UK university Tamil societies, [more]

Tamil Guardian 15 October 2014
Thileepan remembered 27 years on
Tamils remembered the death of Lt. Col. Thileepan last month, 27 years on, staging symbolic fasts and holding remembrance events around the world. Thileepan began a fast unto death on September 15, [more]

Print Editions


Contact Tamil Guardian