Rights group Amnesty International Thursday asked the Tamil Nadu government to ensure safety of Sri Lankans visiting India and investigate the recent attacks on them.
“The authorities in Tamil Nadu must immediately put in place measures to ensure the safety of Sri Lankans visiting and living in India. They must promptly launch investigations into the attacks, and ensure that those responsible are brought to justice in fair trials,” chief executive of Amnesty International India G. Ananthapadmanabhan said in a statement.
He said 175 Sri Lankan tourists were escorted by police to a Tamil Nadu airport Tuesday when Tamil activists staged demonstrations against their visit.
“Tamil Nadu officials and politicians must act responsibly. They must refrain from taking actions and making statements that inflame community tensions, which — as reflected by the latest flare-up — results in attacks on pilgrims and others on the basis of their perceived ethnicity, nationality or religion,” he said.
Amnesty also asked parties in Tamil Nadu to urge central government to put diplomatic pressure on Sri Lanka to end alleged human rights violations.
“Political parties in Tamil Nadu are understandably concerned about continuing human rights violations in Sri Lanka. However, these concerns cannot and must not be translated into acts of violence targeting pilgrims and other visitors from Sri Lanka.’
Amnesty also asked Sri Lanka to enable the independent and international investigation into crimes under international law allegedly committed by Sri Lankan armed forces and militant group LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) during the last stages of the armed conflict in 2009.