Paris: The Tamil Tigers invest the facades of the Chapelle district


Sacrified bodies, a saber dripping blood on a black background, topped by these words: "In memory of the Tamil genocide of May 18, 2009".

Over the past three days, the sinister flags, clutched on wooden sticks, have literally invaded the storefronts and the façades of the La Chapelle buildings (Xe), in the heart of the Sri Lankan Tamil district of the capital.

An interminable string along the streets of Faubourg-Saint-Denis, Louis-Blanc, Boulevard de la Chapelle. Announcing the big demonstration which is to rally, Saturday, the place of the Republic.

"I did not ask for anything"

The parade organized by the Tamil Coordination Committee (TCC), official showcase of the Tamil Tigers, placed on the list of terrorist organizations by the European Union, is held every year on May 18, the day of the surrender of the Tigers in Sri Lanka, ending an armed conflict that left 70,000 dead.

At La Chapelle, the very discreet community watched without a word the members of the organization put the flags on their businesses, perched on ladders. Do they agree to wear them? Most dodge the question. "I did not ask for anything," or "It does not bother me. "

In the neighborhood, on the other hand, some do not fade. They point to the silence that hangs over the merchants, their fear of the Tigers and evoke the racketeering of which the community is victim.

Several recent settlements

The association of residents Tomorrow La Chapelle, as for it, once again this year, split a mail to the City Hall and warned the police prefecture: "This wild flag, imposed on all without the slightest control of the mayor or the police, presenting, moreover, a bloody image, is totally unsuited to the public space ", underlines Loïc Guézo, the president. "Even private condominiums are systematically clashed by this paramilitary organization. If a commercial company acted in this way, the flags would not remain a day … ".

The subject is particularly sensitive, on the eve of the demonstration, that the district has recently been the scene of several settlements within the Sri Lankan community. On March 7, a 30-year-old was amputated with one hand during a fight on Boulevard de la Villette.

"Why are not these protests banned?"

On February 5, around a racketeering affair in the community, a man died of several stab wounds to the thorax and three others were seriously injured on rue Louis-Blanc.

"Why are not these manifestations forbidden? "Asks a resident. "Last year, the participants even replayed the final scene of the guerrilla war with simulation of the 2009 massacre. And organized a fireworks display, without any authorization. "


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