Thursday, November 3, 2011

Chagossian Day - Olivier Bancoult: "We are fighting for a just cause"


The Chagos Refugee Group is organizing a series of activities to mark the commemoration of the deportation of the Chagossians from their native islands, this Thursday, November 3. Olivier Bancoult, the leader of this group is prepared to continue his fight for the Chagossian community.
"We remain hopeful because we are fighting for a just cause." This is how the Chagos Refugee Group leader spoke to the Chagossians, the Chagossian's Day, celebrated on Thursday, November 3. It was during a wreath laying ceremony on Thursday, the Monument of the Chagossians, at Pier C, Port Louis.
The Chagos Refugee Group is organizing a series of activities to mark the occasion, including a special program Sunday, November 6, at Baie du Tombeau.
It was after discussions in 2010 between Olivier Bancoult and Prime Minister Navin Ramgoolam, the date of November 3 was chosen to celebrate the Day of the Chagossians. This date marks the anniversary because of the publication of the first court ruling in London for the Chagossians. "A historic day," according to Olivier Bancoult.
The Chagos Archipelago is made up of 65 islands, Diego Garcia, which houses nearly 40 years one of the largest U.S. military bases. Between 1967 and 1973, all the islanders were evacuated to Mauritius and Seychelles. Since then, the people claiming the Chagossians right to return to the islands.
"It's all a struggle for a human right. They want to know or rediscover their origins and their land. I am convinced that one day, the smile will return to the Chagossian community, " Olivier Bancoult supported.

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