Ten country councils and the TYO from New Zealand convened at Oslo from 27th to 29th July, calling for a referendum among the Eezham Tamils to ascertain their political future based on the historical, earned and remedial aspects of sovereignty of the Eezham Tamil Nation. “As a nation subject to a protracted genocide, the Eelam Tamils’ dignity and freedom can be guaranteed only under a free Tamil Eelam and to ensure this, we call for the international community to recognize the creation of Tamil Eelam through an internationally monitored referendum among Eelam Tamils,” a joint release by the 11 organizations dated 29th July read. The three aspects of sovereignty of the Eezham Tamil nation were concisely discussed in the Tamil Sovereignty Cognition declaration released on Heroes’ Day, 2011.
As concrete action plans, the organizations resolved to form working teams to deal with specific issues of human rights including release of Tamil prisoners of war and political prisoners, political advocacy, land grabs, Sinhalization and militarization in the Tamil homeland, and social, political and economic empowerment of Eezham Tamils in their homeland.
The full text of the joint statement follows:
Declaration from “The Way Forward” conference
Taking into consideration the historical, earned and remedial aspects of sovereignty that Eelam Tamils are entitled to as a nation, the undersigned 11 Tamil Diaspora organisations converged in Oslo, Norway from 27th to 29th July, to declare their commitment to the goal of the creation of an independent, sovereign Tamil Eelam.
As a nation subject to a protracted genocide, the Eelam Tamils’ dignity and freedom can be guaranteed only under a free Tamil Eelam and to ensure this, we call for the international community to recognize the creation of Tamil Eelam through an internationally monitored referendum among Eelam Tamils.
Likewise, we call for immediate steps to undertake an independent international investigation to bring justice to the war crimes and crimes against humanity that have taken place in the island of Sri Lanka that have been highlighted in the report compiled by the UN panel of experts.
The Sinhala racist government which has intensified the process of genocide is currently destroying the traditional homeland of the Tamils, along with land grabs, destruction of economic resources, and assaults on the identity and cultural sites of the Eelam Tamils. As a result, the rights of our people in the homeland are trampled upon and their daily life passes under constant duress. Besides working to prevent and put a permanent stop to this process, we shall also endeavour to restore a dignified life and a humane existence to our people in the homeland.
The organisations at this conference, besides agreeing to jointly work on the aforesaid points after dialogue, keeping in mind the sacrifices of the liberation struggle and the future of the Eelam Tamil people, also extend a call to other organisations to work as a united front in the interests of the Tamil nation.
National Council of Canadian Tamils
Swiss Council of Eelam Tamils
Norwegian Council of Eelam Tamils
Maison du Tamil Eelam, France
Country Council of Eelam Tamils, Germany
Italy Council of Eelam Tamils
Dutch Tamil Forum
Danish Tamils Forum
Tamil Cultural Organisation – Belgium
British Tamils Forum
Tamil Youth Organisation – New Zealand