Sri Lanka: Land grab designed to break up traditional Tamil land, says new report

Ongoing land grabbing by government institutions including the military in Sri Lanka’s Tamil majority north and east is aimed at changing demographics and deny Tamil communities access to their land, says a USA base think tank.

As the 46th session of the UNHRC assesses the new resolution on Sri Lanka, a new report from the Oakland Institute, "Endless War: The Destroyed Land, Life, and Identity of the Tamils in Sri Lanka", brings forth shocking new evidence on the extent of the continued persecution of the minority Tamil population in the North and East of the country.

The 44 page report details how 12 years after the brutal end of the civil war, the island nation has increasingly become an ethnocratic state — intensifying the colonization and Sinhalisation of Tamil lands.

Fragmenting Tamil land

"Under the guise of “development projects,” government driven Sinhalese colonization is growing within
Tamil areas with the intent to change demographics and deny Tamil communities access to their land," the Oakland Institute said in a statement.

"Through irrigation schemes, military settlements, archaeological reservations, wildlife sanctuaries, forest reserves and special economic zones – land-grabbing in the North and East has worsened since the regime change two years ago,” said Anuradha Mittal, who coordinated the research for the report.

"The government’s strategy is also to geographically fragment the traditional Tamil homeland – the North and the East of the country,” she added.

A 'deviating resolution'

Given the enormity of the destruction inflicted upon the Tamil population in the island, the Oakland Institute has expressed its' profound dismay over the zero draft resolution on Sri Lanka presented by the US - UK led  'Core Group', for its failure to 'outline a clear approach for ensuring justice and accountability'.

"It completely deviates from the recommendations made by the UN High Commissioner Bachelet and those made by four former High Commissioners, nine former Special Rapporteurs, and all members of the UNSG’s Panel of Experts on Sri Lanka — to refer the matter to the International Criminal Court'" Mittal further said.

Read the full report



Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka

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