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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2346

International community must take retaliatory action against the Tamil Tigers - Douglas Devananda

Colombo, 01 March, (Asiantribune.com): Appealing to the international community not to be taken for a ride by the Tamil Tiger excuses and propaganda, Douglas Devananda, leader of the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP) and Mininster for Social Services and Social Welfare told the AsianTribune that "the serious crime of knowingly attacking the Western diplomats visiting the east warrants serious retaliatory measures against this terrorist group." Minister Douglas Devananda M.P. : "The indiscriminate attack on the diplomats is another way attacking the IDPs again. The Tigers have never cared for the welfare of the Tamil people. It exploits every opportunity to strengthen its position at the expense of the welfare of the Tamil people."Minister Douglas Devananda M.P. : "The indiscriminate attack on the diplomats is another way attacking the IDPs again. The Tigers have never cared for the welfare of the Tamil people. It exploits every opportunity to strengthen its position at the expense of the welfare of the Tamil people."

"Besides," he said, "the sovereign state of Sri Lanka is under no obligation to inform a terrorist group about the arrival of diplomats to any part of its territory. Furthermore, we have information that the Tigers were well aware of the time and date of the conference organized by the Government Agent to discuss with the diplomats the issues related to the resettlement of the internally displaced persons. The Tigers also knew that the diplomats would be flown in for the conference,” Douglas Devananda said.

He added, “If, however, the Tigers say that they did not know that their shells would hit the diplomats, then it means that they are firing indiscriminately targeting anyone and everyone without any regard for civilian casualties. Either way, the international community must take serious note of this criminal act and should not allow the Tamil Tigers to get away with blue murder. They should also note that the Tiger tactic has been consistently to either deny or blame others for their crimes, or attribute the killigs to "unknown gunmen" which, of course, is the anonymous name given to their killers. The war-weary people of Sri Lanka are tired of their excuses. The international community should take this opportunity not to let Tiger get away with their usual bluff."

Arguing that the Sri Lankan government has the right to conduct their peaceful activities for the welfare of its people in any part of the island without informing any terrorist group, Devananda said that the whole of Sri Lanka, including Vanni where Prabakaran is holed in, belongs to the Government of Sri Lanka. Even the Mullaithievu and Kilinochchi districts are administered by the Government Agents of the Sri Lankan Government, though the Tigers pretend that they are running a separate state. Education, health and other welfare programmes for the Tamil people are delivered by the Government Agents of the government. LTTE has received millions of dollars from many Western countries through INGOs of those countries, but has not spent one dollar for any development programs of the civilians in those areas. All the money goes to maintain its killing machine, he said.

Devananda added that the notion of Tigers running a separate state was reinforced when in 2002 Ranil Wickremasinghe, the then Prime Minister of Sri Lanka entered into a Ceasefire Agreement with LTTE. In fact, it is an illegal document because Ranil Wickremasinghe was not the legally authorized person to sign it without the consent of the President, parliament or the people.

He said that the talks too began on the false premise that the Tigers were the defacto rulers of the north and the east. It was unfortunate that Norway facilitators and the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission perpetuate this false premise that the territory that belongs to the government has been handed over to the Tigers.

The fact remains the Government of Sri Lanka is a sovereign elected Government and the whole of Sri Lanka comes under the jurisdiction of the Government of Sri Lanka.

"Therefore, there is no obligation on the part of the Government to inform the LTTE about the arrival of the diplomats to Batticalao," said Devananda.

"The diplomats came on the morning of 27th to explore ways and means of resettling the Internally Displaced Persons. These IDPs were used as human shields by the Tigers when the LTTE came under attack by the advancing forces of the Sri Lanka Army. The indiscriminate attack on the diplomats is another way attacking the IDPs again. The Tigers have never cared for the welfare of the Tamil people. It exploits every opportunity to strengthen its position at the expense of the welfare of the Tamil people." he said.

"Prabhakaran has now lanched a massive campaign to recruit all the Advance Level students in Maha Vidyalayams in Kilinochchi and Mullaithievu districts. Almost all the schools in these districts have closed down their advance level sections as there are no students left in those schools in Vanni. Parents in these areas are highly perturbed as the LTTE has launched a recruitment drive to conscript the youngest member of a family residing in Vanni into their arms brigade. Like what happened in Vharai in the east a trickle of Tamils living in the Vanni have already commenced to move out and soon the trickle would turn into a flood. The exodus from the Tiger Vanni to government-controlled areas has begun," he said.

"The international community has to take note of the prevailing situation in the north and east and should not be taken for a ride by the LTTE propaganda campaigns, but take stern and severe actions against the LTTE. It is the moral duty of the international community, which is concerned about the humanitarian issues, to help our people to regain their lost freedom and peace," said Devananda.

- Asian Tribune -

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