by Sujeeva Nivunhella reporting from London
A demonstration has been organised by LTTE sympathisers in the UK opposite the Scottish Event Campus in Glasgow where President Gotabaya Rajapaksa is scheduled to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26).
The Sunday Island reliably learns that the organisers of the protest have invited people from all over the UK and arrangements have been made to use six luxury buses to transport them.
A full-page paid advertisement has also been placed in the widely circulated Scottish broadsheet newspaper “The Herald” against President Rajapaksa calling him “The Terminator” and accussing Sri Lanka’ armed forces of genocide against Tamils.
“Our fight for justice will never stop until every single Sri Lankan war criminal is held accountable and our people finally have justice, freedom and liberation,” a protest organiser said. Demonstrations are scheduled to be held on Monday (Nov 1).
This was not the first time that pro-LTTE Tamils in the UK held protests against visiting Sri Lankan Presidents. In 2010, a group of them gathered at the Heathrow Airport and shouted slogans against then President Mahinda Rajapaksa. Tamils also demonstrated in front of the hotel where the President stayed and the sheer scale of protests led to the cancellation of his scheduled speech at Oxford University. Pro-LTTE Tamils also had a large scale protest when the then president visited London in 2012.
Meanwhile, peace loving Tamils living in the United Kingdom welcomed President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s affirmative statement to the UN Secretary General saying he was planning to engage with Tamil diaspora communities.
Talking to the Sunday Island, Tamil Broadcasting Corporation Director and a founder member of Non Resident Tamils of Sri Lanka, Veeraha Ramarajaha, said that they expect the President to outline detailed steps and they are happy to engage with the Sri Lanka High Commission in London.
“There must be engagement with all sections of the diaspora from all political backgrounds. This process must not be used to create division. We have been working with all shades of political opinion and our only interest is the well being of the motherland and its people”, Ramarajaha said.