Jaffna, the main city in the district of Jaffna (Northern Province) was in the middle of the civil war that lasted more than three decades. The main ethnic group in Jaffna is the Sri Lankan Tamils (99% of the population in the Jaffna peninsula), with Hinduism being the main religion (representing 82% of the population).

During the war, Jaffna was a stronghold of the LTTE, and the killing of 15 soldiers of the Sri Lankan army in 1983, which led to the Black July Riots in Colombo, took place near the city. The

burning of the Jaffna library in 1981 was one of the most violent examples of ethnic biblioclasm

of the 20th century. At the time of its destruction, the library was one of the biggest in Asia. Following these incidents, the war escalated and created a North-South polarization within the country. During the period of the war, Tamil youth in Jaffna grew up amidst the brutalities of the LTTE and the state military.

The North-South polarization did not completely end during the post – war period, due to the absence of a clear political agenda reconciliation efforts were also hindered by the prejudices that were created.



Jaffna Hub Team