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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2643

Sri Lanka Government arranges regular food supply for those civilians trapped in the LTTE controlled areas

Colombo, 06 October, ( Sri Lanka Government has pledged to send weekly, food items by Lorries on a regular basis, to the Internally Displaced Persons trapped in Kilinochci and Mullaitivu districts. Also the Government has already set up three reception centers to receive and settle down the Internally Displaced Persons from those war ravaged districts, when they cross over to the Government controlled area in Vavuniya.Minister Abdul Risath BathiyutheenMinister Abdul Risath Bathiyutheen

Speaking to Asian Tribune, Abdul Risath Bathiyutheen - Minister of Resettlement and Disaster Relief Services said, "I went to Vavuniya last week and already sent food items, rice, sugar and wheat flour in 51 lorries. We are planning to send food items in another 60 lorries this week," he said. Government Agents in Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu are responsible for the distribution of these food items in those respective districts, Minister further said.

Minister Abdul Risath Bathiyutheen said, at a meeting held on 26 September at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo, presided over Basil Rajapakshe, Senior Advisor to the President of Sri Lanka, it has been decided that the Ministry of Resettlement and Disasters Relief Services, which is under me, should be responsible for all the relief supplies to the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) in Killinochi and Mullaitivu districts.

He said that after the meeting in Colombo, he invited all the Government Agents in the region for a meeting in Vavuniya and decided to send food materials in 60 lorries.

"For that purpose we selected 30 lorries belonging to the World Food Programme, in addition, I told the GA to hire 30 more lorries from the Mullativu. Out of those 30 Lorries from Mullaitivu, 2 Lorries had bombs. We suspected that theses bombs have been planted by LTTE to blow up once it reached Vavuniya," the Minister said.

He further said: "as the war is raging in Killinochi and Mullaitivu districts, we are expecting the IDPs to arrive from these regions to Vavuniya and we are making arrangements to receive them in 3 centers. We are making arrangement to receive them at the Menik Farm located at Chettikulam - Vavuniya Road and in another 2 locations.

"We have already cleared these places and with the help of UNHCR, we are now constructing temporary shelters there. We are expecting approximately around 200,000 IDPs to come over to these temporary shelters in Vavuniya.

"I have already handed over the arrangement to receive the IDPs to Government Agent, Vavuniya. Also we have set up an Adhoc Committee as well. The committee is headed by the Government Agent Vavuniya together with our Ministry Coordinator Brigader Lall Weerakoon, former MP D.Sidharthan, former Deputy Minister Sumathipala, representatives of NGOs in Vavuniya and UN organizations representative. In addition, I have instructed the committee to look into the logistics of the weekly supply of food to Mullativu and Killinochi and also to look after the welfare of the IDPs who are expected to come to Vavuniya.

Asian Tribune asked, "When do you expect the IDPs to arrive?"

Minister reminded that the same situation prevailed earlier in the Eastern province is happening at present in the North. Earlier in the East, we were told that IDPs will not come from Vaharai into the Government controlled area, but suddenly there was an influx of IDPs from Vaharai into the Government control areas in the East. He said, “We expect the similar situation to arise in the north as well.

When asked about the IDPs in the Mannar district, he said people in the Mannar East have moved into Killinochi. Those were the people who lived along Sangupitti and Illupukadavai, and about 10,000 families have moved into Killinochi.

Regarding the opening of the A32 road, the Minister said that the Road from Mannar upto Palavarayankattu has been cleared for traffic. And he said "we hope that there is every possibility of this road being opened up soon."

- Asian Tribune -

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