Tuesday, June 12, 2007

"Rising government violence in Sri Lanka"

A friend in Colombo, who is NOT Tamil, tells me the following, and I quote more or less verbatim:

"Recent weeks have brought about noticeable changes in atmosphere in Colombo; there is a heaviness in the air. The spiraling conflict is finally having an effect on Colombo, which has otherwise remained removed from the horrors of war in other parts of the country. There are no signs that there will be any improvement in the near future as the government is bent on a military solution. They are borrowing monies to fight a war that they cannot win, leaving the future generation to pay. In the meantime the president's family is putting handsome sums into foreign accounts through arms-deals. In the end it is the poor who suffer in this conflict. They are the ones whose sons are sent to be killed. They are the ones who can't afford to leave the country to flee the shelling. They are the ones struggling as taxes are raised, government charges increase, unemployment rates soar…

"We are continually amazed to hear of the different schemes the Government thinks up in order to make money, the most recent being a tax they are now imposing on all NGO income from 2005.

"On a more positive note people are starting to challenge the government's course of action. Only last week hundreds of Tamils "without legitimate reason to be in Colombo" were taken away in the middle of the night by buses, in what could be described as ethnic cleansing. However, a public outcry has forced the government to issue apologies, with the Tamils allowed to return. There seems to be a new determination amongst the church leaders of Sri Lanka not to remain silent in the face of the injustices committed on both sides of the conflict. Please pray for the protection of those church leaders who are courageously taking public stands. "

That's what he says. Sphere: Related Content

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