In what appeared to be a clash of narratives among the Canadian Leaders, Canada’s Foreign Affairs Ministry had informed the Sri Lankan government that Canada had not made any finding that genocide had taken place in Sri Lanka, the Daily Mirror learns.
Canada’s official position contradicts the allegations made by some of its leaders, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The Daily Mirror learns that the Canadian Foreign Ministry had responded to the Sri Lankan authorities on concerns raised on March 21, 2021 by Brampton’s City Council’s reference to genocide.
While asserting that the municipal and provincial governments enjoy independence from the federal government of Canada, the Canadian Foreign Affairs Ministry had informed Sri Lanka of its official position that “the Government of Canada has not made a finding that there was genocide in Sri Lanka” on April 7, 2021.
However, the Canadian Prime Minister renewed the narrative of genocide on May 18, 2023, a day prior to the anniversary of Sri Lanka’s war victory against the LTTE.
Mr. Trudeau had said that the stories of the Tamil-Canadians affected by the conflict “serve as an enduring reminder that human rights, peace, and democracy cannot be taken for granted."
“That’s why Parliament last year unanimously adopted the motion to make May 18 Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day,” he said.
Sri Lankan rejected this allegation and registered its protest formally by summoning Canadian envoy Eric Walsh.
The Sri Lankan authorities believe that the Canadian politicians keep on making such unsubstantial allegations to appeal to the Tamil vote base in Canada, despite its official position being otherwise.
Canada’s Ontario Legislature has already passed the Tamil Genocide Education Week Act, a private member’s bill tabled by Conservative MP Vijay Thanigasalam, who is of Tamil descent. Some other Sri Lankan Canadians have challenged the constitutionality of the law. (Kelum Bandara)