Update 8 October 2013
Many thanks to the 3000+ of you who signed this petition.
On Monday 7 October 2013 Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper confirmed that he will not attend the Commonwealth Heads of Governments Meetings to be held in Sri Lanka later this year as Sri Lanka failed to uphold the Commonwealth's core values.
Former Prime Minister Hon Malcolm Fraser is among dozens of prominent Australians calling on the federal government to consider boycotting a major Commonwealth summit in Sri Lanka this year.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay’s report after a visit to Sri Lanka in August made it very clear that there continued to be persistent human rights violations and she expressed deep concerns of the heavy military presence in Tamil areas, vulnerability of women and girls to sexual harassment and abuse especially at the hands of military personnel.
Human Rights abuses in Sri Lanka are inextricably linked to Tamils comprising the largest group of asylum seekers arriving on our shores.
Please invite your friends and family to sign the petition that Malcolm Fraser has signed to tell Australia that it is unacceptable to reward an abusive government the privilege to host the summit and subsequently Chair the association.
The petition has been endorsed by:
* Professor Raj Rajeswaran, Chairman, Australian Tamil Congress
* Hon Malcolm Fraser, Former Australian Prime Minister
* The Australian Greens
* Lee Rhiannon, Senator, The Australian Greens
* David Shoebridge, Member of the NSW Legislative Council, The Greens
* Colleen Hartland, Member of the Victorian Legislative Council, The Greens
* John Kaye, Member of the NSW Legislative Council, The Greens
* Jamie Parker, Member for Balmain, The Greens
* Bruce Haigh, Former Australian Deputy High Commissioner in Sri Lanka
* Professor Jake Lynch, Director, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, USYD
* Professor Damien Kingsbury, Director, Centre for Citizenship, Development and Human Rights Faculty of Arts and Education, Deakin University
* Emeritus Professor Stuart Rees AM, Director, Sydney Peace Foundation, USYD
* Antony Loewenstein, Independent journalist and author
* Professor Wendy Bacon, academic and investigative journalist
* Stephen Blanks, Sectretary, NSW Council for Civil Liberties
* Peter Murphy, Coordinator, The Search Foundation
* Julian Burnside AO QC, Australian barrister, human rights and refugee advocate, author
* Sue Bolton, Socialist Alliance councillor, Moreland City Council, Melbourne
* Refugee Rights Action Network (WA)
* Labor for Refugees
* Socialist Alliance
Please note that we have updated the petition as follows:
- The Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) meets in less than a month (April 26). This is because the CMAG meeting has now passed
-We have updated the line which stated CHOGM was nine months away
- Prime Minister
Hon Tony Abbott
- Foreign Minister
Dear Prime Minister,
We urge you to reconsider Australia's decision to attend CHOGM 2013 in Sri Lanka.
The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) is in less than three weeks. It is due to be held in a country where a brutal tyrannical regime continues to commit acts of murder, torture, and rape - while ignoring the core values of the Commonwealth. People are looking to you for leadership.
We appeal to you to follow the example of your Canadian colleague Prime Minister Stephen Harper and reconsider your decision to attend CHOGM in Srilanka.
Australian Tamil Congress started this petition with a single signature, and now has 4,032 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.