In Sri Lanka, Tamils Are Divided over the LTTE's Legacy

Ramanthan Vijayalakshmi can reel off the date of her brother’s death by memory — Oct. 17, 1995. A 47-year-old resident of Jaffna, Sri Lanka, Vijayalakshmi had lost contact with him five years before he died, when he had been recruited as a fighter by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, or LTTE, a militant group that had been waging a civil war against the Sri Lankan government to create a separate Tamil homeland, Tamil Eelam. Her brother, Ramalingam Punniyamoorthy, was only in the eighth grad

Education crisis brewing on Sri Lanka's tea estates

When 13-year old Nishanthini puts on her uniform in the morning and sets off for school, it's not always certain she will make it to class. Some days, her parents don't have enough money for bus fares for both her and her older brother but send them out anyway in the hope that a kindly bus driver or conductor will agree to take them for less. "Sometimes that’s how they go," says Nishanthini’s father, Marimuthu Maheswaran. "If they go in a known bus, those boys will help out because they know th

Conflict Forced Them From Their Homes. Now the Military Is Occupying Their Land.

The explosions in 1990 were the start of the second phase of the civil war between the Sri Lankan military and ethnic Tamil separatists that ravaged the island from 1983 to 2009. Almost all of Palaly’s 44,000 residents who were mostly Tamil, either fled or were evacuated by the Sri Lankan government in June and July 1990. For many in Palaly, that was the last time they would set foot on their ancestral land, and for almost all of them, the last time they would see their homes. Shatheeskumar, who

Families in Sri Lanka yearn for answers on relatives who disappeared in civil war

KILINOCHCHI, Oct 26 (Reuters) - (This Oct. 26 story has been corrected to fix name of official to Mahesh Katulanda in paragraph 16 and 20) Arumuga Lakshmi, tormented by questions about the fate of her two children, missing for years, marched through a town in northern Sri Lanka with a group of women, many holding up photographs, black flags and burning torches. During a brutal 26-year civil war between the Sri Lankan government and a militant group, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE),

‘We were all robbed’: Grenfell's community stands in solidarity on fifth anniversary

The air around Grenfell Tower is heavy, five years after the fire that claimed the lives of 72 residents. It’s heavy with the tears of the families who have gathered at the site to mourn their loved ones, heavy with longing for all the lives that could have been, and heavy with the quiet strength of a community that is still confronting a disaster of unimaginable scale. Jo is standing with her cousin before the memorial wall, pointing out the name of her boyfriend written on a small brown heart along with the other survivors.

Drugs, violence and racism are creating a 'cocktail of neglect' in Marseille

(CNN) The southern French port city of Marseille has made headlines in recent months over the deaths of several young people in drug-related shootouts, in what is often referred to as a "settling of scores." A spate of killings this summer, including that of a 14-year-old boy named Rayanne in mid-August, prompted two visits from President Emmanuel Macron in September and October and a promise of billions of euros to tackle the problem.

The pandemic could be Indian leader Modi's undoing. But millions won't ditch him just yet.

(CNN) Dr. Satyendra Kumar Tiwary thinks of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi as superhuman. A leader like Modi comes along "once in 2,500 years," he says, and should be remembered among the greats in India's history, like Mahatma Gandhi, and even the Buddha. "The world will never see another leader like Modi," said the 47-year-old professor of general surgery from Varanasi, which is both Modi's parliamentary constituency and one of the holiest cities for Hindus.

‘The Deaths Can’t Be Erased’: Tamils and the Fight for Justice in Sri Lanka

On a snowy afternoon in January, 24-year-old Thanujan Sellathurai delivered a speech in front of a small crowd of protesters from the Tamil community in Geneva. He called for the United Nations, which has several of its agencies headquartered there, to condemn the “brutal atrocity” that had just taken place in Sri Lanka. Authorities at the University of Jaffna, on the northern tip of Sri Lanka, had ordered the bulldozing of a memorial paying tribute to the victims of the Mullivaikkal massacre.