27 Jan 2009

Auckland protest held over Tamil conflict

6:08 am on 27 January 2009

Sir Lankans living in Auckland have staged a 48-hour quiet protest, drawing attention to what they claim is genocide against Tamil supporters in their home country.

Several hundred people gathered in Aotea Square in central Auckland on Monday. The protest was due to end with a candlelight ceremony at 9.30pm.

One man has fasted since Saturday night.

Organiser Viji Ratnaveal says government troops are shelling and killing Tamil people in so-called "safety zones".

Mr Ratnaveal wants New Zealand to recognise the plight of the Tamils and to push for a media ban on reporting the conflict to be lifted.