Speaking out for the ‘Malayaga’ Tamils

Sri Lanka

Hi! My name is Viboo. This is a story from my home Sri Lanka.
We experienced a civil war that lasted nearly 30 years. Even after it ended, conflict continued among ethnic groups. Mechanisms proposing transitional justice and reconciliation had failed. After the war, women-headed movements started in the North and Eastern parts. They had lost their husbands, fathers, brothers and children during the war. There was a mission to find out what happened and find justice for their loved ones. I belong to one of the minority ethnic and women human rights defenders’ groups who have lost their loved ones and those who defend land rights. I advocate for the land and adequate housing rights of the Indian-origin Tamils, also known as the ‘Malayaga’ Tamils. I am a post-war activist.

Activists in my country face several challenges in the form of online hate, surveillance and intimidation by intelligence officers. Intelligence officers visit their homes and cause mistrust in the village. Many women feel sad and quit their human rights work. The children may also face difficulties in securing jobs and experience public humiliation. There is a significant gap in understanding their well-being needs.

Stories from the Sri Lanka Safe Sisters coalition are here!

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