Sri Lankan Tamils will not settle for anything less than a separate Eelam as they had already paid the highest price towards achieving the goal, DMK president M. Karunanidhi claimed on Tuesday.

“The prospects of a political solution and devolution of power remain only on paper and the Sri Lankan government does not even have the basic honesty of fulfilling the promises made on world forums. Sri Lankan Tamils have given lakhs of lives in sacrifice towards achieving the goal. Tamils have lost everything in their own country, lost their relatives and roam the streets of many countries as orphans and refugees. They have paid the highest price,” Mr Karunanidhi said in a statement here.

The DMK leader, who favours the formation of a separate Eelam on the lines of East Timor, Kosovo, South Sudan and Montenegro, said efforts made by moderate Tamil leaders, such as A. Amirthalingam to find a peaceful solution, were nipped in the bud and agreements with them were thrown to the winds.

“The armed struggle was crushed by unprecedented military deployment. Sinhalese majoritarianism does not show an iota of interest in giving equal rights to the Tamils,” Mr Karunanidhi said, reacting to the argument of BJP leader Sushma Swaraj and CPI(M) MP T.K. Rangarajan that Tamil leaders were not for a separate Eelam.

Mr. Karunanidhi, an ally of the Congress-led UPA at the Centre, said as far as the Sri Lankan Tamils were concerned, he had not asked India to intervene the way it did in Bangladesh. “I just want India and the United Nations to intervene and conduct a referendum for the formation of a separate Eelam,” he said.

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