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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 82

Defense of Viginia Judge New South Wales MP lacks...........

[b]Defense of Viginia Judge New South Wales MP lacks credibility[/b]

The statement made to the Parliament of New South Wales, Australia, by the Ms. Virginia Judge, on her return from a brief visit to Sri Lanka, caused a furore, with most of her critics challenging her on the misleading facts and figures quoted by her in defence of her LTTE hosts.

This issue exploded into the headlines of Sri Lankan and other media outlets after the Asian Tribune (August 31, 2005) broke the story of her taking money (she called it “donations”) to the banned LTTE organizations in “Tamil Eelam” – a place that is not found in any authoritative map of the world.

The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and the Sri Lankan High Commission in Australia had earlier warned her not to take money to the LTTE as it is a banned terrorist organization. The Australian Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, had repeatedly refused to allocate funds to the Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO) as it is considered to be a front set up by the LTTE. Also it would be a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1373 which prohibits a member country from financing terrorism in any form.

Asian Tribune’s news (August 31, 2005) was based on a telephone interview the Editorial Advisor and the Australian Bureau Chief had with Ms. Virginia Judge.

At first she was happy to talk to the Asian Tribune and her secretary even promised send a picture of hers. Initially, she told the Asian Tribune that she was taking half the money collected by the Parliamentary Asia Pacific Friendship Forum as the other half was given to the tsunami victims in Aceh, Indonesia. But as the questions probed deeper into her taking money to the LTTE controllerate she became very defensive and aggressive in her tone.

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