Around 10,000 Tamils from across the UK gathered in London to demonstrate against the visit of Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on Monday. The protest, which was held outside Westminster Abbey and the Commonwealth Head Office at Marlborough House, took place as Sirisena joined the British Queen and others at the Annual Commonwealth Day evening reception. The demonstration saw a large participation of youth activists who rejected the LLRC and demanded an independent international investigation into the genocide of Eezham Tamils.
Tamil Youth Organisation (TYO-UK), Tamil Coordinating Committee (TCC-UK) and the British Tamils Forum (BTF) were backing the mobilisation of Tamils, who also expressed solidarity with the protesting families of the missing families in the homeland and the student community, who are demanding the international community to exert pressure on Colombo to release the Tamil prisoners and to establish the whereabouts of the victims subjected to enforced disappearances.
The protests were met with a very high level of police presence. The barriers were larger than usual, sources in UK said.
The day before, TNA UK branch was on television advising people not to attend the protest. TNA’s nominated parliamentarian Sumanthiran also issued a ‘special statement’ asking for the protest to be cancelled.
Most of the demonstrators expressed anger against the Sumanthiran polity and the duplicity of a number of other Tamil parliamentarians, who continue to give legitimacy to the deviations by the hierarchy of the Ilangkai Thamizh Arasuk Kadchi (ITAK).