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Thursday, June 07 , 2012 - 08.13 GMT
Pro-LTTE protestors obstruct freedom of expression


The morning session of the Commonwealth Economic Forum the event in which President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Boris Johnson, Mayor London were scheduled to address was called off by the organizers due to pressure of pro-LTTE elements in London.

The Commonwealth Business Council that had organized the event making a special announcement said they decided to cancel the entire morning session.

After careful consideration the morning sessions of the Forum on Wednesday 6th of June have been cancelled and will not take place, the organizers of the Commonwealth Business Forum said in a statement.

Members of the Sri Lankan Tamil expatriates in UK had mounted a protest campaign to exert pressure on the Commonwealth Business Council to disallow President Rajapaksa from addressing the Business Forum.

This two – day symposium was organized to coincide with the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II. It was expected to be attended by all member states of the 54-nation Commonwealth.

The symposium titled “Diamond Jubilee: Commonwealth Economic Forum” was to take place at Mansion House in London June 6th and 7th.

According to media reports pro-LTTE activists in London were gearing up to launch a mammoth demonstration in the vicinity of Mansion House on June 6th where President Rajapaksa was scheduled to address the forum.

Tamil Nadu politicians Vaiko, Seeman, Thirumavalavan had issued statements urging Tamils abroad to obstruct President Rajapaksa from attending the jubilee celebrations. Observers noted that these rhetorical statements were heavily insulting and amounted to incitements to violence.

These statements were widely circulated in Britain and Europe by the pro-LTTE elements to mobilize huge crowds for the demonstration near Mansion House.

Special buses were arranged to transport demonstrators to the venue while a number of activists from other European countries also began arriving.

Appeals were made to Tamils to gather in large numbers and prevent the Sri Lankan President from speaking as in the case of the aborted Oxford Union speech in 2010.







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Last modified: June 07, 2012.

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