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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Sri Lanka situation desperate ...

Tamils in Sri Lankan Camp

If you followed the Sri Lankan conflict at all you'll know that the bloody internal war has finally ended, with a military victory by the government over the Tamil Tigers (and others). You may not know that there are internment camps now, with more than 250,000 Tamil people, including women and children. Ostensibly in place to sort out the 'bad guys' they are putting thousands of innocent people at risk in horrible conditions.

Check this petition out if you have a few moments (Unlock the Camps).

On a related note, a ship with what might be 76 Tamil men aboard, was intercepted before illegally landing on Canada's west coast. The government is crowing about 'not being an easy target for illegal arrivals' and 'being tough on these queue jumpers' blah blah blah. While we don't want economic migrants or other illegal immigrants arriving this way, here is a NOTE TO MINISTER:

Refugees with a well-founded fear of persecution are not queue jumpers and don't have the opportunity to immigrate as others. They arrive illegally sometimes because they are fleeing for safety. International laws protect them.

These men may or may not have legitimate asylum claims, but let's not be quick to close our sacred doors in fear, and ignore our obligation to review their cases fairly. And for the record... Canada can handle more refugees as well as more immigrants.

Other than our Aboriginal neighbours, that's how we all arrived (or our ancestors).

Your words re: the ship with the Tamil men aboard – well argued & to the point.

Will now check out the petition.
Gary - When I go to the site, it says the Unlock the Camps "take action" site is no longer in action or working...
Glad you fixed it.
it is very sad to read about what is going on in Sri Lanka. those poor people. i imagine the homes and businesses and lives ruined by that war and its aftermath.
p.s. i signed to petition too.
I love your clear voice.
Some friends of mine spent several months in Sri Lanka 20 years ago. They told me they were the most graceful, gentle and hospitable people they'd ever encountered. Of course I'll sign the petition too.
Thanks all. And I love your clear and bright and funny voice Cheri.

Susan, I have friends who have been there too and I think it's suffering the trauma of a long war now. And once again, the women and kids are taking the brunt. May they find all the peace and justice they should have... soon.

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