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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2703

Prabaharan is actively trailed and his activities in the jungle hideouts closely monitored

Colombo, 17 December, (Asiantribune.com): Sri Lanka intelligence agency is well aware of the developments in the Vanni hideout of Prabaharan, the leader of the Tamil Tigers. They are tracking very closely and minutely following the developments. Even the intelligence group is aware of the minor injury sustained by Prabaharan last month and they are actively trailing him to bring an end to terrorism in the country. Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: It must be said very emphatically that all the Tamils are not terrorists, but unfortunately, all the terrorist are Tamils. Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: It must be said very emphatically that all the Tamils are not terrorists, but unfortunately, all the terrorist are Tamils.

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella, Government Spokesman for the Defense and National Security and Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare was speaking to Asian Tribune.

He said that the Sri Lanka Armed forces is bent on bringing an end to terrorists menace in the country. Answering to a question he said with confidence that though he was unable to give a time frame to defeat terrorism in the country, “But we are quiet positive of achieving our final aim of defeating the terrorists in the country,” the Minister said He further added when asked “Any details you can reveal that is taken up to end this menace of terrorism? He said, “I think we are in the right direction and we are determined and we will.”

Excerpts of the interview Asian Tribune had with Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella, Government Spokesman for the Defense and National Security is given below:

Question: There was a report to say that Liberation Tigers leader Velupillai Prabaharn was slightly injured in the last month’s aerial bombardment?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: Yes, there was certain stories around that and our intelligence people are certainly aware of it. Our intelligence group is fully aware of what is happening in the Vanni hideouts and we are very closely monitoring the developments in Vanni. Anyway our intelligence people are very certain that they are active in the trail of Prabharan. Well, you see we are looking at totally defeating the menace of terrorism.

Question: How long it will take for you to eliminate terrorism in Sri Lanka?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: Time period are impossible in these kinds of things and it is not practical. But we are quiet positive of achieving our final aim of defeating the terrorists in the country.

Question: Minister Douglas Devananda says the only way to bring an end to the LTTE is to kill its head of intelligence Pottu Amman, since he is the person who guides LTTE leader Vellupillai Prabhakaran and others in the organization?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: People who are involved and are knowledgeable of the inside set up and especially those who are fully aware of the system of LTTE will of course have their own point of view and express their opinion.

Question:What is the Government view about Pottu Amman, the intelligence Chief of the LTTE?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: He is known as a man who is handling their intelligence and operation and at the same time in a terrorist organization there are only very few who matters at the end of the day. Pottu Amman in our view is one of them.

Question: Any details you can reveal that is taken up to end this menace of terrorism?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: Yes, I think we are in the right direction and we are determined and we will.

Question: Arresting of the Tamils in Colombo and South? What was the reason for that unpopular exercise?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: One has to accept the fact that worst thing for the country is to wage a war against any group within the country, but it has so happened that Prabharan seems not to understand anything about this. Therefore, whether we like it or not, we have to face it. It was very unfortunate the people has to undergo many inconveniences, but to achieve the final target of defeating terrorism, all citizen has to pay a prize on such matters and make certain sacrifices. This is not a bed of roses.

Question: Why always the Tamils?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: It must be said very emphatically that all the Tamils are not terrorists, but unfortunately, all the terrorist are Tamils and under these circumstances, it becomes necessary to exercise ‘cordon and search’ operation from time to time for the safety of the citizens who are Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Burgers and Malays, in the process of safeguarding the citizens of this country.

Question:Many of the Tamils who are arrested are those who fled Vanni and the North of the country for their security and safety to Colombo and the South and by arresting and harassing them, you are driving them back into the hands of Prabaharan?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: This is an argument that has been put out by various people.

Question: It is not merely an argument, but it is a statement of fact?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: No, it is an argument which is brought about where we see certain realities in it, but unfortunately if you look at it, if I may cite an example, if you look at the women who came to assassinate Hon. Minister Douglas Devananda. If she was arrested 10 minutes prior to that act, if she was caught that way, they will blame that the security forces has arrested a handicapped innocent Tamil woman and harassed her. This is the issue that we are facing. When they were taken into custody, within 24 hours 90 percent of them were released. We found 9 people who have certain links with LTTE and also one person who have had flying training, whom we suspect had a link with carrying out the air operation. Therefore, we are very grateful to the people who have to undergo immense difficulties for the sake of the country. They too are also citizens of our country.

If you look at the people in the so called border villages, who comes under the threat of Prabharan, they all the time had to undergo immense difficulties right throughout. So much so, innocent women and children have to move out into the jungle during the night, fearing brutal attacks on their home by LTTE. So it is very clear that irrespective of ethnicity, the sacrifices that we make are to finally achieve the goal of having a peaceful country by eradicating terrorism.

Question: Do you think Colombo is now safe from suicide LTTE carders?

Dr.Keheliya Rambukwella: You see that nobody could give guarantees on terrorism. But defense authorities have checked many things and keeping the situation under control. By this you can minimize the threat.

- Asian Tribune -

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