Tamil Eelam independence referendums, 2009–2010

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Flag of the Tamil Democrats with the traditional colors of Tamil Eelam
Area claimed for Tamil Eelam

During 2009-2010 a number of referendums were held in Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora communities to ascertain support for an independent Tamil Eelam, as reported by Tamil nationalist TamilNet the website also claims that the Sri Lankan government and its supporters to prevent them.[1] To date referendums have been held in ten countries (Norway, France, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Denmark, Italy and Australia). Referendums are expected be held in other countries with significant Tamil diaspora population.[2]

Details[edit]

The referendums, although organised by Tamil groups, have been conducted by independent organisations with independent observers. Voters have been asked their opinion on the following statement:

"I aspire for the formation of the independent and sovereign state of Tamil Eelam in the north and east territory of the island of Sri Lanka on the basis that the Tamils in the island of Sri Lanka make a distinct nation, have a traditional homeland and have the right to self-determination."

Norway[edit]

Voting took place on 10 May 2009 at 14 locations throughout Norway. The referendum was organised by the Utrop newspaper but conducted by independent Norwegian professionals. 99.11% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[3]

France[edit]

Voting took place on 12 and 15 December 2009 at 35 locations throughout France. The referendum was organised by The House of Tamil Eelam but conducted by French election officers coming from local government councils. 99.86% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[4]

Canada[edit]

Voting took place on 19 December 2009 at 31 locations throughout Canada. The referendum was organised by the Coalition for Tamil Elections Canada but conducted by Election Systems & Software. 99.82% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[5] The low turnout was blamed on the need for all voters to register.[5]

Switzerland[edit]

Voting took place on 23 and 24 January 2010 at 50 locations throughout Switzerland. The referendum was organised by a Swiss Tamil diaspora organisation but conducted by independent journalists and politicians. 99.80% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[6]

Germany[edit]

Voting took place on 24 January 2010 at 110 locations throughout Germany. The referendum was organised by the International Human Rights Association of Bremen but conducted by independent teachers, NGO workers and politicians. 99.41% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[7]

Netherlands[edit]

Voting took place on 24 January 2010 at 15 locations throughout the Netherlands. The referendum was organised by a Dutch Tamil diaspora organisation but conducted by independent election officials. 99.67% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[8]

United Kingdom[edit]

Voting took place on 30 and 31 January 2010 at 65 locations throughout the UK. The referendum was organised by the Tamil National Council but officiated by independent observers, including councillors and Members of Parliament. 99.71% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[9]

Denmark[edit]

Voting took place on 28 February 2010 at 33 locations throughout Denmark. The referendum was organised by the Denmark Tamils Forum but conducted by TNS Gallup. 99.49% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[10]

Italy[edit]

Voting took place on 21 March 2010 at 16 locations throughout Italy. The referendum was organised by independent election commission of Eelham Tamils but conducted by the Co-ordination of Non-governmental Organisations for International Development Co-operation, an Italian federation of NGOs. 98.79% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[11]

Australia[edit]

Voting took place on 17 and 18 April 2010 at 9 locations throughout Australia. The referendum was organised by the Tamil Referendum Council Australia but officiated by CPI Strategic, an independent body. 99.38% voted for an independent Tamil Eelam.[12] Approximately 10,000 of the 15,000 eligible voters registered to vote.[12]

Results[edit]

Country Yes No Valid Votes Rejected
Votes
Total
Polled
Eligible
Voters
Turnout
(%)
Votes % Votes % Votes %
Norway[3] 5,574 99.11% 50 0.89% 5,624 100.00% 9 5,633 c8,500 c66%
France[4] 30,936 99.86% 43 0.14% 30,979 100.00% 169 31,148 c35,000 c89%
Canada[5] 48,481 99.82% 85 0.18% 48,566 100.00% 17 48,583 c100,000 c49%
Switzerland[6][13] 16,357 99.80% 32 0.20% 16,389 100.00% 52 16,441 c25,000 c66%
Germany[7] 22,904 99.41% 136 0.59% 23,040 100.00% 49 23,089 c25,000 c92%
Netherlands[8] 2,728 99.67% 9 0.33% 2,737 100.00% 13 2,750 c4,000 c69%
UK[9][14][15] 64,256 99.71% 185 0.29% 64,441 100.00% 251 64,692 c100,000 c65%
Denmark[10] 4,072 99.49% 21 0.51% 4,093 100.00% 54 4,147 c6,500 c64%
Italy[11] 3,596 98.79% 44 1.21% 3,640 100.00% 40 3,680 c4,500 c82%
Australia[12] 8,154 99.38% 51 0.62% 8,205 100.00% 67 8,272 c15,000 c55%
Total 207,058 99.68% 656 0.32% 207,714 100.00% 721 208,435 c323,500 c64%

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "France goes for referendum on Tamil Eelam this weekend". TamilNet. 11 December 2009. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  2. ^ "Eezham Tamil mandate picks up global momentum". TamilNet. 3 November 2009. Retrieved 18 December 2009. 
  3. ^ a b "99 percent Norway Tamils aspire for Tamil Eelam". TamilNet. 11 May 2009. Retrieved 18 December 2009. 
  4. ^ a b "99% assent Tamil Eelam in overwhelming turn out of 31,000 in France". TamilNet. 14 December 2009. Retrieved 18 December 2009. 
  5. ^ a b c "99.9 percent say yes to Tamil Eelam in Canada referendum". TamilNet. 20 December 2009. Retrieved 20 December 2009. 
  6. ^ a b "Referendum conducted in exemplary way in Switzerland". TamilNet. 25 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010. 
  7. ^ a b "Overwhelming turnout of voters in Germany, 99% mandate Tamil Eelam". TamilNet. 24 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010. 
  8. ^ a b "99.2 percent voters consent Tamil Eelam in Holland". TamilNet. 25 January 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2010. 
  9. ^ a b "Largest possible turnout, 99.33 percent British Tamils aspire Tamil Eelam". TamilNet. 1 February 2010. Retrieved 1 February 2010. 
  10. ^ a b "Denmark silences detractors of Tamil referendum". TamilNet. 28 January 2010. Retrieved 2 March 2010. 
  11. ^ a b "Italian Eezham Tamils conduct referendum, form country council". TamilNet. 23 March 2010. Retrieved 23 March 2010. 
  12. ^ a b c "99.4 percent vote for Tamil Eelam in Australia". TamilNet. 22 April 2010. Retrieved 22 April 2010. 
  13. ^ "Results". Coalition for Tamil Election Switzerland. Retrieved 1 February 2010. 
  14. ^ "Final Result". Tamil Eelam Referendum GB. Retrieved 1 February 2010. 
  15. ^ Jones, Sam (1 February 2010). "British-based Tamils vote for independent state in Sri Lanka". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 February 2010.