TNA reiterates demand for Tamils’ self-determination

The Tamil National Alliance (TNA), a coalition of four parties in Sri Lanka, on Saturday reiterated its adherence to the right to self-determination of Tamils and the re-merger of the Northern and Eastern Provinces under the federal structure.

While pointing out that Tamil-speaking Muslims would be entitled to the benefits of “all power-sharing arrangements in the North-East”, the Alliance, in its manifesto released on Saturday, said “this will no way inflict any disability on any people.”

Asked whether the main political formations would accept TNA’s demands for self-determination and federalism, R. Sampanthan, the coalition’s leader, said “there is no way out”.

rajavarothiam-sampanthan“I am hopeful that they will realise that majoritarianism is not a solution to the country’s national problem,” he said.However, he replied in the negative to a question on whether the Alliance would make the acceptance of its demands as a pre-condition for any post-election tie-up.

Mr. Sampanthan said the Alliance would engage with everyone. Its approach would be “positive and constructive.”

The TNA, comprising the Ilankai Tamil Arasu Katchi, Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation, Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front and the People’s Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam, is contesting in the electoral districts of Jaffna, Vanni, Batticaloa, Digamadulla (also known as Ampara) and Trincomalee of the Northern and Eastern Provinces.

The Alliance, while seeking fulfilment of resolutions adopted at the United Nations Human Rights Council from 2012 to 2014 and recommendations of a report to be released in September this year, called for “meaningful demilitarisation” of the region, returning to the pre-war situation existed in 1983. It also demanded a speedy resettlement of the displaced Tamils in the North and the East.

The involvement of the international community in the Tamil question was “inevitable to achieve permanent peace through genuine reconciliation,” enabling all people living in the country to live as equal citizens, it added.