What is Genocide of Tamils?
The genocide of Tamils refers to the mass killing of Tamils in Sri Lanka, in the hands of the Sinhalese. This is one of the main issues that are fueling the conflict between the Sri Lankan government and Rebel Tamil Tigers.
In 1972, Velupillai Prabhakaran, the then leader of the Tamil Tigers formed the Tamil New Tigers (TNT) who eventually becomes the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). On July 23rd, 1983, the group ambushes and kills a group of 13 soldiers which sparks riots and anti-Tamil sentiments, where an estimated 600 people lost their lives, which also sparks a civil war. In 1985, LTTE again retaliates by killing 146 Sinhalese civilians in a holy Buddhist site. Since then, there has been a series of violence between the Sinhalese and Tamils.
Over the decades, more than 90,000 Tamils have been targeted and killed, with the government turning a blind eye, and some even say instigating the attacks. Businesses owned by Tamils were burned and vandalized, and many believe that Sinhalese rioters were provided voters lists in order to target specifically Tamils. Political prisoners were also murdered by Sinhalese convicts inside the prison, while many civilians were stripped, burned and murdered in plain sight.
Many still debate whether to call the slaughter ‘genocide’, but many Tamils and supporters believe that the systematic killings merit being called such, and deserve the attention of the world.
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