Sri Lanka rejects Canadian Prime Minister’s genocide allegation

Foreign Ministry Sri Lanka

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Sri Lanka has strongly rejected the recent statement by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who accused Sri Lanka of committing “genocide” in a message dated May 18, 2024.

The Sri Lankan government has consistently denied these allegations, asserting that no credible authority in Canada or internationally has objectively determined that genocide occurred in Sri Lanka. These claims relate to the end of the armed conflict with the LTTE, a terrorist organization listed in 33 countries, including Canada.

The Ministry expressed concern that Prime Minister Trudeau’s statement disrupts communal harmony among Canadians of Sri Lankan origin, a community that has significantly contributed to both Canada and Sri Lanka. It emphasized that civilians from all communities, especially Tamil civilians in the North and East, suffered due to the LTTE’s actions. The Ministry stated that “a partisan narrative ignores the complex reality of the Sri Lankan conflict” and that such comments harm Sri Lanka’s ongoing efforts towards reconciliation and national unity.

The Ministry criticized Canada for what it sees as double standards, highlighting that while Canada focuses on Sri Lanka, it remains silent on other humanitarian crises. This selective attention, according to the Ministry, fosters international polarization and extremism.

The Ministry also addressed the humanitarian efforts during the conflict, stating that “humanitarian supplies including food and medicines were regularly and systematically delivered to affected areas by the Government in collaboration with local NGOs and international organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross and UN agencies.” They emphasized that the Sri Lankan government maintained civilian administration in affected areas and facilitated the evacuation of the wounded, regardless of their affiliations.

The Ministry underscored the LTTE’s atrocities, including targeting civilians and assassinating moderate Tamil leaders, and reiterated Sri Lanka’s commitment to reconciliation and peace since the end of the conflict.

In conclusion, Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged the Canadian government to promote peace and harmony responsibly and to recognize the detrimental effects of perpetuating false narratives for political gain.