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Forum Home > GRNlive Correspondent Story Ideas > Activists rally in support of Tamil refugees

Zack Baddorf
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The MV Sun Sea arrived on Vancouver Island on Aug. 12 carrying 492 Tamils fleeing Sri Lanka and now seeking refugee status in Canada. The refugees claim they faced murder, kidnapping, and extortion back home.


The organization No One Is Illegal is holding weekly rallies in front of the Burnaby Youth Custody prison where approximately 90 Tamil refugee mothers and children are being detained. They banged on pots and pans to the beats of Tamil music.


Incorporating the weekly rally into the story for natural sound, I will focus on what has brought the Tamils to Vancouver and the Sri Lankan government's repression of Tamils back in Sri Lanka. The activists also allege that the Canadian government is being racist by detaining the Sri Lankans while it investigates them. One activist also told me that economic opportunities for Western countries in Sri Lanka come at a cost of human beings, resulting in the Tamils having no choice but to flee. Finally, I'll touch on the human smuggling aspect. The government wants to crack down on it; the activists say the refugees have little choice but to use smugglers to flee.


Last October, a ship with 76 Tamils arrived in Victoria. The men are said to be living in Toronto awaiting decisions on their refugee claims. Canadian media reported that another ship with Tamils fleeing Sri Lanka may be heading toward Canada.

September 20, 2010 at 7:49 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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