The Canadian Tamil Congress held a press conference today to demand that the Canadian government “take immediate and strong actions against Sri Lanka to prevent a civilian bloodbath.”
Thousands of Tamil civilians remain trapped with a dwindling force of Tamil Tiger rebels along a swampy coastal strip in northern Sri Lanka, where the Sri Lankan army has cornered them. The European Union, among others, has condemned the Tamil Tigers for using the trapped civilians as human shields and forcibly preventing them from leaving the conflict zone.
At the press conference, Balakuma Balasingam, an executive member of the Ottawa chapter of the Canadian Tamil Congress, said the civilians with the Tigers are there by choice and would rather starve under continuous shellfire with the Tigers than cross to government-controlled territory. Tens of thousands of Tamils have fled the Tiger enclave by land and boat. Balasingam said they made a “momentary decision.”