In a statement that Mayor Miller released Sunday evening he expressed the right for the group to protest but not in areas that endangers the public’s safety.
“Toronto’s Tamil community is understandably concerned about what is
happening to friends and family in Sri Lanka. They have an absolute right to
make those concerns known and to protest. Endangering public safety by
occupying the Gardiner or other public highways is not the right way to make
“Like all Torontonians, I want to see a peaceful end to the conflict in
Sri Lanka and hope members of the international community, including the
Federal Parliament, will use their influence to see that humanitarian aid
flows to the affected area.
“I am confident the Toronto Police Service will ensure that public safety
is preserved and protected.”Close to 2,000 of the Tamil community in Toronto shut down both lanes of traffic on the Gardiner Expressway as the group marched up ramps at Spadina Avenue. The group is protesting the civil war in their homeland of Sri Lanka.
This most recent gathering came one day after reports that at least 378 people were killed from an all-night artillery in the war zone.
The Toronto Star reports:
“The community is asking for a representative from the Conservative government to come meet the community and assure them that serious economic or diplomatic sanctions will be placed on Sri Lanka,” said Shyanthy Thezarajh, 24, a spokesperson for the Tamil protesters.
“There’s been a massive impact on each and every individual here. And they’re pretty much trying to get the media to understand what’s going on in the hopes that the issue would come to the world stage and some kind of meaningful solution will be achieved for Sri Lanka right now,” she said.
The true numbers of those killed are hard to pinpoint as journalists are not allowed in the war zone nor are aid workers.
Police are requesting motorists to use public transit or use routes other than the Gardiner to get to the downtown.