Sri Lankans in Los Angeles Hand over Memorandum to President Rajapaksa
Sun, Feb 14, 2010, 03:39 am SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.
Feb 14, LA: Sri Lankans in Los Angeles, California, engaged in a spontaneous protest rally to show
solidarity with the recently arrested common Presidential candidate (Rtd) Gen. Sarath Fonseka and
to express concern on the current turmoil and instability in the country.
The peaceful protest, carried out in downtown LA, on February 12, 2010, was not organized by any
particular group or association. The highlight of the event was the handing over to the Sri Lanka
Consulate in LA, a memorandum addressed to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, signed by the participants
at the rally.
Los Angeles, California
February 12, 2010.
Hon. Mahinda Rajapaksa
President of Sri Lanka
Dear Mr. President,
We write with deep concern for our country’s future, and out of genuine respect for you, the leader of our country, because we believe that in your innermost heart, you love our united country. Sri Lanka is one of South Asia’s oldest democracies and we all cherish that and are proud of it.
When you became President of Sri Lanka in November 2005, the scourge of LTTE terrorism was destroying the very fabric of our society, and you took up the challenge of eliminating that threat. You destroyed the LTTE, which was a fascist force that did not tolerate dissent, and murdered those who refused to see things their way. You destroyed a terrorist group that did not believe in democracy and the freedom of speech. And we, the Sri Lankans in Los Angeles, salute you for leading by freeing the people of Sri Lanka from the grip of terrorism.
Having won the war, the people of Sri Lanka expected to enjoy the fruits of peace and freedom, in an atmosphere free of fear. But, ironically, the people of Sri Lanka today live in a confused fear. There is suspicion and mistrust, and no one knows who the enemy is. Many dare to express free opinion without fear of dire consequences. Journalists are abducted, tortured and killed. There seems to be doubts on democracy in Sri Lanka today. So, what has Sri Lanka achieved by destroying terrorism?
Please, Mr. President, we are appealing to all that is good in you.
The people of Sri Lanka voted you in, trusting you, and believing that you would create a better tomorrow for them. They did not expect you to turn against them and punish them for expressing their honest constructive opinion to transform this magnificent country of ours. The fear is the most dangerous enemy of democracy because under the right circumstances it can trigger the temptation of those who govern themselves to surrender that power to someone who promises strength and offers safety, security and freedom from fear.
We are looking to your leadership now, the same way we did in November 2005. Instead of uniting Sri Lanka after terrorism, the turn of events today has divided our society. But, make no mistake. Sri Lanka will always seek justice; as sure as the compass shows the way. Please help justice to thrive in Sri Lanka, for without justice; there will be no peace, and no prosperity. Please let your love for Sri Lanka guides you to do what is right for the country and the people.
May the Noble Triple Gem bless an honest and just leader, and our beloved motherland, Sri Lanka.
The Sri Lankans in Los Angeles.