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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2731

US State Department trains Sri Lankan police officers in counter terrorism

By Walter Jayawardhana

A reputed Counter terrorism school in the United States trained mid level and senior police officers in Sri Lanka to combat the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) at the Police Training School Kalutara under State Department Funds during February.

“Mercyhurst College Intelligence Studies Department Chair Jim Breckenridge and Assistant Professor Dave Grabelski recently returned from Kalutara, Sri Lanka, where they delivered counterterrorism training to Sri Lankan law enforcement, currently embroiled in battling a separatist insurgency” the reputed school, in Erie, Pennsylvania, which runs a successful intelligence studies department said.

School sources added that this marked the first training session provided by Mercyhurst intelligence faculty under a new contract with the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security, Office of Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA).

Mercyhurst said, according to the contract, they signed with the State Department the school is charged with creating and delivering two information management courses aimed at strengthening antiterrorism efforts in Latin America, Africa and Asia through a broader and more disciplined analysis of information within the state department's partner nations. The two professors were sent to Sri Lanka under the contract.

Mercyhurst delivered the two-week Law Enforcement Intelligence for Counterterrorism course to 22 mid- to senior-level officers at the Sri Lanka Police College in February. The course utilized case studies, link charts, and structured analyses to explain, examine, and forecast terrorism problems.

ATA curriculum project manager Gary W. Hartman said Mercyhurst was selected for this latest antiterrorism project because of its "expertise in this field." Since ATA's inception in 1983, more than 41,000 security and law enforcement officials from more than 130 countries have received antiterrorism training, Hartman said. These officials are now better prepared to fight terrorism and protect their citizens in times of crisis, he added.
With the success of the course at the Sri Lanka Police College, Breckenridge said plans can move forward to provide the course at an as yet unnamed country in June 2008.

- Asian Tribune -

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