News / Asia

    UN Vote on Sri Lankan Civil War Threatens Indian Government

    Leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam party M. Karunanidhi speaks at a press conference withdrawing support to India’s ruling United Progressive Alliance government, at the party office in Chennai, India, March 19, 2013.Leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam party M. Karunanidhi speaks at a press conference withdrawing support to India’s ruling United Progressive Alliance government, at the party office in Chennai, India, March 19, 2013.
    x
    Leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam party M. Karunanidhi speaks at a press conference withdrawing support to India’s ruling United Progressive Alliance government, at the party office in Chennai, India, March 19, 2013.
    Leader of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam party M. Karunanidhi speaks at a press conference withdrawing support to India’s ruling United Progressive Alliance government, at the party office in Chennai, India, March 19, 2013.
    Anjana Pasricha
    Discord in India about a United Nations resolution on war crimes committed during Sri Lanka’s civil war has prompted a key regional ally to pull out of the coalition government. The government says its stability is not under threat, but the Congress-led alliance has become more fragile. 

    The DMK party, which announced Tuesday it will quit the government, is based in the southern Tamil Nadu state, which has a majority Tamil population. The party has demanded that the government amend an American-sponsored resolution at the United Nations Human Rights Council to declare that Sri Lanka committed genocide against its minority Tamil population in the last stages of a civil war which ended a quarter century Tamil insurgency. The DMK also wants the U.N. resolution to press for an international inquiry.

    The U.N. resolution calls on the Sri Lankan government to investigate possible human rights violations during the campaign.

    The Congress-led government has not revealed yet what position it will take when the U.N. resolution is put to vote later this week. The DMK party also wants Indian parliament to pass a resolution similar to the one in the United Nations.

    The Sri Lankan government has not met commitments to rehabilitate its Tamil population, the spokesperson of the party, T. K. Elangovan, told parliament.

    “It is the moral duty of the government of India to see that these assurances were fulfilled or else to put pressure on the government of Sri Lanka to see these assurances are kept up. Why India is a silent spectator," he asked.

    India Tamil activists try to push past a barricade during a protest against alleged wartime abuses by Sri Lanka in Chennai, India.
    India Tamil activists try to push past a barricade during a protest against alleged wartime abuses by Sri Lanka in Chennai, India.

    The government faces a dilemma. On the one hand, it is under pressure from ethnic Tamil parties like the DMK to take a tough stand against Sri Lanka on the question of alleged rights violations against Tamils. But it does not want to anger its tiny neighbor for fear that it will move closer to China.  

    The DMK has 18 seats in the lower house of parliament. This includes five government ministers. Its withdrawal makes the Congress alliance, which is already in a minority, more vulnerable.  

    However, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said there is no “crisis” for the government.

    “Let me assure everyone that the stability of the government and the continuance of the government are not an issue," he said. "The government is absolutely stable.”

    The government is holding talks with the DMK party to find a way out of the current impasse. Unless it can bring the Tamil party back on board, it will have to depend on small regional parties to pass legislation and will face more political uncertainty in the last year of its five-year term.

    You May Like

    Water Scarcity Could Push Conflict, Migration by 2050

    Warning comes in a new report from the World Bank titled "High and Dry: Climate Change, Water and the Economy"

    What Your First Name Says About Who You Support for President

    Bobby, Betty and Curtis tend to support Donald Trump while people named Juan, Liz or Mohammad are more likely to lean toward Hillary Clinton

    South Pole Diary: In Round-the-clock Darkness, Radiant Moon Shines Like the Sun

    You hear more and see more when the moon first comes out; it’s your senses in overdrive, tuning into a new world.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Elavarasan from: Chennai
    March 20, 2013 10:32 AM
    This is bullshit, I don’t know why these Indian politicians hesitating to put vote for Tamils against Lanka, One Delhi girl got raped which reveals this as big issue by Media people and by politicians.....The same things happened for Thousands of our Indian sisters as well as many murders but both Media people and Politicians not talking about this as big issue..... Even some Politicians know about these murders and rapes in this situation they hesitate to put vote for our own people even when other countries are ready to support for us.....India will never grow if these kinds of politician people under ruling in India…..

    by: Ganesh from: London
    March 20, 2013 3:06 AM
    Congress led India has supported the Srilankan sinhala state since indira-gandhi passed away. Nomatter who demands it, Student's of Tamilnaadu or politicians at the end the Support of Mainland-Tamils for their Island-Tamils has been there and it will continue. A genocide on Tamils occured in May 2009 " the Blood Bath on Beach" An international Investigations is a must before reconciliation...No Justice No Peace....Congress Central Goverment does not bother about Tamilnaadu fisherman getting killed by Sihala Navy.. so is Tamil Life less worth then any Others???
    In Response

    by: Vinoth from: US
    March 20, 2013 9:58 PM
    always tamilnadu fisherman cross the sri lankan board so Sri lankan navy arrested the indian fisherman and indian fisherman have a no authorize to cross the sri lankan boarder.

    by: Tamil from: California
    March 19, 2013 2:17 PM
    Mr. Karunanithi is an opportunistic vulture of Tamil Nadu, who disgraced Tamils for decades. I am a Tamil speaking Indian as well.
    Jaya Lalitha is not Tamil Nadu born and she is doing better than him for Tamils ( I am not her fan at all). When LTTE massacred Sri Lankan Tamils that was not genocide for DMK, even though LTTE was the acting state at the time [collected tax]. When LTTE murdered Rajive that was not murder for DMK, because Karunanithi and Prabakaran are peas from the same pod.
    He has many noise making clowns in parliament and Indian ministry. Hope Tamil speaking Indians will unmask these kind of guys.


    by: prabath dlk from: Tokyo
    March 19, 2013 10:41 AM
    This shows Real Double standers of us & India ..America cannot remember how many Innocent people the LTTE killed in sri lanka
    Sinhalese , Tamils , ..
    Americans can go to other country to totally destroy country's Like Irak, Afghanistan, Libya did Sri Lanka did some thing different yes they did it in there own back yard , & they succeeded ..Why Double standers

    by: RR from: Boston
    March 19, 2013 10:29 AM
    The srilankan tamil cause lost all credibility with India when the tamils turned against the IPKF who were there specifically to protect their interests, just so that the tamil tigers and Prabhakaran could hold on to power.

    Then, to make matters worse they killed Rajiv Gandhi.

    We can't be particularly bothered about them. They are not trust worthy and brought everything that's happening to them upon themselves. You can jab a dog and complain that it bit you.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroadi
    X
    May 02, 2016 1:36 PM
    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.
    Video

    Video Ethiopia’s Drought Takes Toll on Children

    Ethiopia is dealing with its worst drought in decades, thanks to El Nino weather patterns. An estimated 10 million people urgently need food aid. Six million of them are children, whose development may be compromised without sufficient help, Marthe van der Wolf reports for VOA from the Metahara district.
    Video

    Video Little Havana - a Slice of Cuban Culture in Florida

    Hispanic culture permeates everything in Miami’s Little Havana area: elderly men playing dominoes as they discuss politics, cigar rollers deep at work, or Cuban exiles talking with presidential candidates at a Cuban coffee window. With the recent rapprochement between Cuba and United States, one can only expect stronger ties between South Florida and Cuba.
    Video

    Video California Republicans Weigh Presidential Choices Amid Protests

    Republican presidential candidates have been wooing local party leaders in California, a state that could be decisive in selecting the party's nominee for U.S. president. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports delegates to the California party convention have been evaluating choices, while front-runner Donald Trump drew hundreds of raucous protesters Friday.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Football Team Helps War-Torn City Cope

    With the conflict still raging across much of Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, between the rebel PKK and the Turkish state, many Kurds are trying to escape the turmoil by focusing on the success of their football team Amedspor in Diyarbakir. The club is increasingly becoming a symbol for Kurds, not only in Diyarbakir but beyond. Dorian Jones reports from southeast Turkey.
    Video

    Video ‘The Lights of Africa’ - Through the Eyes of 54 Artists

    An exhibition bringing together the work of 54 African artists, one from each country, is touring the continent after debuting at COP21 in Paris. Called "Lumières d'Afrique," the show centers on access to electricity and, more figuratively, ideas that enlighten. Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, the exhibition's first stop.
    Video

    Video Pakistani School Helps Slum Kids

    Master Mohammad Ayub runs a makeshift school in a public park in Islamabad. Thousands of poor children have benefited from his services over the years, but, as VOA's Ayesha Tanzeem reports, roughly 25 million school-age youths don't get an education in Pakistan.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Documentary Tells Tale of Chernobyl Returnees

    Ukraine this week is marking the 30th anniversary of the world's worst nuclear accident, at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Soviet officials at first said little about the accident, but later evacuated a 2,600-square-kilometer "exclusion zone." Some people, though, came back. American directors Holly Morris and Anne Bogart created a documentary about this faithful and brave community. VOA's Tetiana Kharchenko reports from New York on "The Babushkas of Chernobyl." Carol Pearson narrates.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.
    Video

    Video  Return to the Wild

    There’s a growing trend in the United States to let old or underused golf courses revert back to nature. But as Erika Celeste reports from one parcel in Grafton, Ohio, converting 39 hectares of land back to green space is a lot more complicated than just not mowing the fairway.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora