Conflict in Sri Lanka
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Conflict in Sri Lanka

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    Conflict in Sri Lanka Conflict in Sri Lanka Presentation Transcript

    • COUNTRIES DIVIDED
    • CONFLICT IN MULTI-ETHNIC SOCIETIES: CASE STUDY 1: Sri Lanka CASE STUDY 2: N Ireland
    • Why do people of different races and religions disagree?
      • Not allowed to keep traditional way of life; forced to adopt different set of customs and traditions
      • Language and education policies which do not consider their interests
      • Law has been unfair to them
      • Fight for control of power
      • Disagreement on how the country should be ruled
      • Job opportunities or economic resources
    • How do people resolve these disagreements?
      • Tolerance
      • Peaceful protest & marches
      • Hunger strikes
      • Taking up arms
      • Diplomatic negotiations to work out a peace settlement
    • Conflict in Multi-ethnic Sri Lanka
    •  
    • First, The scenic side of Sri Lanka…
    •  
    • How is Sri Lanka like these days?
    • Some parts in Colombo are marred by …
    •  
    • Tamil woman suicide bomber killed 23, wounded 60 Friday 05, July 1996 [Source : http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/parade/nm58/suicide.htm]
    •  
    • SRI LANKA The setting for a violatile situation
    • Map 2000 SRI LANKANS 3 major races SINHALESE TAMILS MOORS
      • SINHALESE SPEAK SINHALA; BUDDHISTS
      • TAMILS SPEAK TAMIL; HINDUS
        • Sri Lankan Tamils
          • Descendants of Tamils who have been living in Sri Lanka for centuries
        • Indian Tamils
          • Descendants of tea plantation workers brought in from India by the British
      • MOORS MUSLIMS
          • Descendants of Arab or Indian Muslim traders
    • Distribution of different racial groups in Sri Lanka, 1993 Indian Tamils Sri Lankan Tamils Sri Lankan Tamils 18% of population are Tamils
        • 1798 to 1948
        • British Colony
        • 4 Feb 1948
        • Gained independence
        • Known as Ceylon
        • 22 May 1972
        • Officially became known as the Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka
      SRI LANKA
    • SRI LANKA But why did conflict arise?
      • SRI LANKA
      • Racial Differences
      • Sinhalese vs Tamils
      • Conflicts over
      • Citizenship rights
      • Language policy
      • University Admission
      • Resettlement of Population
    • Political decisions that led to conflict …
    • Citizenship rights
      • 1948: Indian Tamils became stateless due to amendment in citizenship clauses
      • 1964: Indian Tamils who were stateless received help from India to become citizens of India again
      • This did not legalize till late 1980s and thus, not improving on the situation of the stateless Indian Tamils
    • ‘Sinhala only’ policy
      • Under the British rule, the minority English-educated Tamils were able to occupy some fo the most powerful jobs in the government service.
      • Eight years after independence, in 1956, Sinhala was declared as the country’s official language.
      • Sinhala, not English, was to be used as administrative language
    • impact
      • Peaceful demonstration against the Official language Act took place.
      • Supporters of the Sinhala language disrupted the demonstration.
      • Rioting occurred and hundreds died.
      • - What action did the government do to appease the situation?
      • July 1958
        • Pact signed which made Tamil made language of national minority and used for administrative purposes in areas where there were Tamils
        • Consequence
          • protests from Sinhalese which resulted in
          • withdrawal of pact in 1958 Violence escalated
      • In1978
        • Tamil declared national language in Sri Lankan Constitution and used mainly for administration in northern and eastern parts of the country as well as an official language.
        • English used as medium of communication amongst the different groups.
    • Second issue of contention…
    • University admission
      • Before 1970
        • Based on merit
        • Medium of instruction in exams: English
        • Sinhalese dissatisfied that there were almost as many Tamils as Sinhalese in the university medical and engineering courses
        • Did not reflect population proportion in the country
      • After 1970, the government introduced new university admission criteria.
      • Measures taken to lessen Tamil students in university – what are these measures?
        • Consequence: significant fall in percentage of Tamil students as opposed to rise of Sinhalese students
    • Third issue of contention…
      • Indian Tamils lived in highland districts
      • Sri Lankan Tamils located mainly in Jaffna & Batticaloa
      • Policy in 1950 to resettle poor Sinhalese peasants from densely populated central and southwestern parts to the Tamil-majority areas
      Resettling of Sinhalese
    • Population Resettlement
      • Consequence:
      • Tamils who felt that the Sinhalese were ‘intruders in their territories’-
          • Sinhalese peasants
          • Buddhist monks
          • Soldiers who were mainly Sinhalese
        • Whole villages were driven out by the Sri Lankan army to be occupied by Sinhalese settlers
        • The new settlers were also provided protection by the army
    • impact
        • Unhappiness amongst Tamils felt marginalized and rejected by the large-scale government resettlement schemes into these traditional areas of Tamils
    • Consequences of conflict..
    • Political consequences of the Sinhalese-Tamil conflict
    • Tamils embarked on armed conflict
      • Peaceful demands made initially
        • 1950: Federal party requested for recognition of federation of Tamil areas in the country.
      • 1976: Tamil United Liberation Front formed to fight for independent state for the Tamils
        • Separate state to be known as Tamil Eelam
      • Rejection by government to the demands
      • In 1976, the militant group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) or Tamil Tigers was formed to pressure the government to give in to their demands
      • Sinhalese also showed hostility towards Tamils through violence. Between 1981-1983 anti-Tamil riots broke out
      • During the 1983 riots, 13 Sinhalese soldiers were killed by the Tamil Tigers
      • The riots sparked a long armed conflict between government forces and Tamil Tigers in the struggle for self rule in the north and east of the country.
      • The internal war has been on-going for 20 years, and cost more than 60,000 lives.
    • Intervention from India
      • Initially played the role of mediator in response to 1983 riots
        • Mediator: neutral party who acts as peacemaker to resolve conflicts
      • However, peace talks between Sinhalese and Tamils (initiated by India) FAILED
      • In June 1987, Indian government decided to send food supplies and petroleum to help the Tamil minority in Sri Lanka
    • Map of Sri Lanka
      • BUT Sri Lankan navy turned them away
      • Indian Air Force decided to send their supplies through air, resulting in violation of Sri Lankan airspace
      • July 1987: to resolve conflict with India over the abovementioned incident, peace accord was signed. It included:
        • Ceasefire between Tamil Tigers and Sri Lankan forces
        • Tamil Tigers to surrender all their arms to Indian peacekeeping troops
        • Merging of northern and eastern parts of Sri Lanka where Tamils are dominant group
    • Peacekeeping: successful?
      • NO! Why?
      • Tamil Tigers failed to abide to the agreement to surrender their weapons
      • Indian troops took over Tamil-dominated Jaffna
      • Confrontations are between Indian troops and Tamil Tigers from then onwards
    • Economic consequences of the Sinhalese-Tamil conflict
    • Unemployment
      • Riots of July 1983 left many factory workers, plantation and self-employed jobless
      • E.g. destroying their workplaces by vandalism or burning them down
      • crime rate in the country rose as a large number of Sinhalese took part in vandalism, looting and burning of their places of work occurred
      • ,
    • Investment loss from other countries
      • Investments play a vital role in the economic growth of Sri Lanka
      • However, riots in the country led to fall in investments due to the instability
    • Fall in tourism
      • Tourism is another major component of the economy in Sri Lanka
      • Riots=>loss of jobs=> fall of economy
      • Fall in tourismwhich resulted in loss of jobs and decline in the economy
    • Social consequences of the Sinhalese-Tamil conflict
      • Sri Lankan Tamils driven out of their homeland
      • Large-scale displacement of Tamils (in July 1983, many Tamils fled to Tamil Nadu)
      • In 1990s, High Security Zones (HSZ) were set up by Sri Lankan army to contain LTTE
      • In 1995, many Tamils fled their homes when the Sri Lankan army moved into Jaffna to take on the LTTE.
      • Today, many Tamils still live in overcrowded conditions in refugee camps or with relatives and friends
      • 2005 Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadingamar a Tamil was assassinated His campaign against a separate Tamil state angered LTTE, a setback to peace
      • A string of attacks ensued
      • Tamil Tigers vowed to use available resources to obtain independence
      • Peace talks to commence in 2006
    •  
    •  
    • Women and children massacred by LTTE in Kotiyagala in Monaragala District in Sri Lanka, Dec 1995 Srhttp://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/parade/nm58/weli.htm
    • Is peace possible?
      • 2002 Peace talks on ceasefire pact
      • LTTE dissatisfied
      • First Suicide bomb since 2001
      • Devastation was large - 30,000
      • Foreign aid not given to both
    • Was the formation of the LTTE (Tamil Tigers) a help or hindrance to the Tamil cause?