Saturday, February 14, 2009

The plight of the Human Rights Community

(DW)There is mass speculation regarding the number of civilians trapped inside LTTE areas. Human Rights groups who make a living out of such situations have claimed that 250-000 (MSF) to 300,000 (AI Report) civilians are trapped in these areas. How these organizations arrived at these figures is a mystery, or is it?

A careful observation of these agencies' information extraction process reveals that there is much to be desired in terms of their methodology for getting at the 'truth'. This is because the exact number of civilians trapped in those areas is not known even by the military. There has not been a census conducted in those areas in two decades. The Army's best guesstimates puts the number around 100,000 civilians at the most. Full Text

Norwegians too are crocodile tearing

The conflict in Sri Lanka has not taken a dramatic turn for the worse for the country as Norway claims but it has certainly taken a dramatic turn for the worse for their friends, the Tigers.

From Ratnajothy Siva in Oslo

(February 13, Oslo, Sri Lanka Guardian) An examination of a statement from Norway addressed to President Mahinda Rajapakse shows the kind of mischievous garbage Sri Lanka had to put up with such foreign elements. Using the late Thamilselvan – Zoo Paa – as their contact man, the Norwegians did a lot of damage by aiding, helping and training the Tigers especially in undersea operations. They had ultimate intentions. Full Text

Brown + Browne = white imperialism

By H. L. D. Mahindapala

(February 13, Melbourne, Sri Lanka Guardian) "I've asked Des Browne, our former defence secretary, to be an envoy for Sri Lanka," British Prime Minister Gordon Brown told a parliamentary committee yesrterday. But who asked Gordon Browne to send his near-namesake, Browne, to Sri Lanka? Quite appropriately, Rohitha Bogollagama, Foreign Minister, has asked both Brown/es to go jump in the Thames. Full Text

Abuse of children as soldiers is a serious violation of human rights - UNICEF

By Lalith Ganhewa in Berlin for Sri Lanka Guardian

(February 13, Berlin, Sri Lanka Guardian) Commemorating the occasion of (12.2) the International Day Against The Use of Child Soldiers, the UNICEF and the German Government called for endeavours to demobilize and re-integrate child soldiers.Despite the global stigma, according to recent estimates by the UNICEF, over 250,000 children and young people are still being used and recruited as soldiers to fight wars. (Image:"The use of children as soldiers in wars and armed conflicts is one of the most horrendous crimes imaginable" - G√ľnter Nook) Full Text

IC Sheds Crocodile Tears Again!

By Malin Abeyatunge writes from Melbourne

(February 14, Melbourne, Sri lanka Guardian) Condemnations are coming from all over the world on yesterday’s (9/2/2009) barbaric act by a LTTE suicide woman bomber killing 33 including 20 soldiers who were administering the IDPs registration and 13 civilians who have escaped from the clutches of the LTTE. Full Text

Carry on treachery of Tamilnet trash and twaddle

By Ranjit Surendran on the spot in Visuvamadu

(February 14, Jaffna, Sri Lanka Guardian) Tamilnet.com are the types of which legends of the villains and the wicked are written for posterity. That such an infamous and the iniquitous should visit us is our cruel fate. Like the bleach that will yank the unrelenting dirt out, it is hoped our people will get sick of the appalling misinformation and mischief with which our community is being devastated by the likes of Tamilnet.com. Full text

Appeal for an amnesty

By Kumar Rupesinghe

(February 14, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) The President has in his recent speeches called on the LTTE to surrender, to lay down their arms and ensure that civilians under their control are released so that they can be rehabilitated. Similarly, the Tokyo Co-Chairs (Norway, Japan, US and EU) on Tuesday called on the Tamil Tigers to lay down their arms surrender to the Sri Lankan Government if the civilians of Vanni are to be spared further death and suffering: Full Text

Realistic Compromise or Futile Fantasy?

By Dayan Jayatilleka

(February 14, Geneva, Sri Lanka Guardian) Victory is within our grasp. The Tigers are about to be completely overthrown, the entire national territory re-unified. That victory will be definitive but not final, total and complete until the leadership cadre of the LTTE is hunted down and destroyed. No one must be allowed to “mediate” an end to the war, because that would deny us victory, provide the Tigers an exit and keep them intact as a player. Full Text

Crystal Gazing On Sri Lanka

By Col R Hariharan

(February 13, Chennai, Sri Lanka Guardian) The future of Sri Lanka conflict has raised a lot of global conflict. Here are some questions from a Russian media and my answers to them; they give an over view assessment of the whole situation:

Q1. What is the current state of play in Sri Lanka as you see it? Is peace as far off now as it ever was? Have there been any achievements in the last 30 years? Full Text

Impose President Rule immediately in Tamil Nadu – Dr. Swamy

Chennai, 12 February, (Asiantribune.com): The Union Government must impose President's Rule immediately on Tamil Nadu, because the state is paralyzed due to a spineless government, urged Dr. Subramanian Swamy.

"Schools and Colleges are indefinitely closed down, the Courts have stopped work because of pro-LTTE advocates unrestrained by police, are engaging in hooliganism instead of arguing law for the people before judges, and no one in government is prepared to be answerable for any grievance of the public because the CM is hospitalized and incommunicado, emphasized in statement, Dr. Subramanian Swamy, Janata Party President and former Minister for Law and ustice. Full Text

Distorted international perception of developments in Northern Sri Lanka - Ambassador Aryasinha

(AT)Intervention by Ravinatha Aryasinha , Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Belgium and EU at the European Parliament – South Asian Delegation session, Brussels

Chairman Robert Evans, Members of the South Asia Delegation of the European Parliament, representatives of the European Council, European Commission and my fellow South Asians.

It is clear that the LTTE in Sri Lanka and its front organizations abroad, desperate in the face of impending military defeat, have over the past two weeks resorted to means unparalleled in recent times. This is not surprising. Full Text

British Mumbo Jumbo rejected: Des Brownes appointment draws sharp criticism - Sri Lanka is not a British colony

Colombo, 13 February, (Asiantribune.com): The announcement of the appointment of a special envoy to Sri Lanka has drawn sharp criticism in Sri Lanka. The cross section of the Sri Lankan leadership dismissed it as a 'British Mumbo Jumbo' as rightly pointed out by the Asian Tribune. Sri Lankan leadership reminded that British Prime Minister should be told that Sri Lanka is no more the colony of Britian for him to dictates to the country from 10 Downing Street.

They said Sri Lanka, a sovereign Independent Nation and it should be treated accordingly. Full Text

After LTTE defeat: Challenges ahead

C.P. Kuruppu

(AT)Sri Lanka's religious groups, especially the Buddhists need to collect whatever assistance they can give to civilians who are fleeing the small area still held by the LTTE. This is essential in the view of the fact that the Tigers, their local and foreign sympathizers and the self-styled anti-war crusaders have been carrying out relentless world-wide propaganda for the past three decades that is the "Sinhala Buddhist Chauvinists" who have been the primary cause of the present crisis. Full text

BBC – going .... going, but not gone fully from Sri Lanka

Colombo, 14 February, (Asian Tribune): The BBC World Service which anounced on Tuesday 09 February that it has stopped providing radio news to Sri Lanka's state broadcaster alleging of "deliberate interference" by government censors, but on the contrary BBC continues daily with 3 1/2 hours of English language broadcast making use of the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation, the state owned radio of Sri Lanka.

When "Asian Tribune" contacted Hudson Samarasinghe, Chairman of the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation, he told that he also read the news report that BBC has stopped providing 'Radio News' to the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation. He said that so far he has not received any official intimation to that effect from the BBC World Service. Full Text

An Open Letter To The U.S. Ambassador

(TI)How is it that the U.S. advocates a negotiated political settlement in the case of Sri Lanka while military might is the norm for the U.S. in Iraq and Afghanistan? Full Text

Protection against Suicide Bombers

(TI)I am neither a scientist nor an engineer but just a layman. However when I read of the technological advances made today it is surprising that technology as not come up with a way to detect a suicide bomber before he or she can detonate the bomb.

The USA has developed a machine, probably an advanced ray machine, to scan airline passengers at airports to identify would be hijackers. This machine shows on the screen a person almost naked and will reveal even the tiniest object hidden in his or her dress. However there have been objections against this machine especially by women who would not want anyone to see images of their naked bodies. Talking of technology today nanotechnology is so advanced that cameras are made which are smaller than the width of a human hair. Full Text

Watch out for cluster bombs of lies

by Lucien Rajakarunanayake

(TI)It’s not trendy or chic anymore to say it is raining cats and dogs. Not if you belong to INGO circuit or that club of touch-down and quick-go foreign correspondents who prefer the gossip of the INGO circuit to the hard work of news gathering. For them the fashion today is to say it is raining cluster bombs. It is not the tropical monsoon they talk about. It’s all about what’s taking place in the north of Sri Lanka . Full Text

FM tells ICRC head safety of civilians is Govt’s priority

(TI)Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama met the head of the International Committee for Red Cross (ICRC) Paul Castella and informed him that the utmost priority of the Government is to ensure the safety and security of the civilians and to look after their welfare. He commended the ICRC for the good work that is being carried out by the staff of the ICRC under trying conditions. Both sides discussed the arrangements in place to provide for the welfare and the immediate needs of the civilians as well as the injured who need medical care. Full Text

Govt. says only 65,000 not 450,000 civilians remain in Mullaitivu

by Zacki Jabbar

(TI)The government yesterday claimed that only about 65,000 civilians remain in Mullaitivu and not 450,000 as stated by the LTTE.

Resettlement and Rehabilitation Minister Rishard Baduideen, addressing the Cabinet press briefing at the Information Department, said that the LTTE inflated the number of civilians under its control to 450,000 to obtain more supplies of food and medicine from the government. "In future we will send supplies for about 100,000 people." Full Text

Leading terrorist agents arrested in Cyprus

(DN)Herath Mudiyanselage Rohan Priyantha was arrested by the Cyprus Police yesterday on information provided by the Tamil community.

According to the information he was one of the foremost agents of the LTTE. In order to transmit money to the terror outfit, H.M. Rohan Priyantha and another Sri Lankan Sinhalese woman was engaged in finding European husbands for Sri Lankan women for marriage with the aim of obtaining Cyprus citizenship for which he had been charging Euro 5,000. Full Text

Visuamadu reflections

(DN)Their feet are swollen and filled with mud and dust as if their legs were plastered up to their knees. They have crossed waterways and muddy terrains under the cover of darkness after dodging the LTTE cadres manning the ‘hell’ gates of the uncleared areas.

They were all carrying baggage, children their school bags and others their meagre possessions in polythene sacks and suitcases filled with precious belonging they left as they crossed the gates of ‘hell’ in search of freedom. Full Text

Govt cancels Tiger radio licence issued during ceasefire

(DN)The Government has cancelled with immediate effect the radio transmission licence issued to the LTTE peace secretariat during the tenure of the ceasefire agreement.

“Accordingly, in terms of powers vested in me, I have cancelled the licence effective from January 17, 2009,” Mass Media and Information Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa told the weekly Cabinet press briefing at the Government Information Department yesterday. Full Text

LTTE violence: The game is not over

(DM)As opposed to the general perception among the majority Sinhalese that Tamils would have given up hopes on the struggle of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), and in spite of the fact that the LTTE has been cornered by the security forces in a small area in Puthukudiyiruppu in the Mullaitivu district, the Tamil nationalism closed to the rebels seems to be still defiant. Full Text

‘There should be an unconditional ceasefire by both sides’

(DM)There should be an immediate, unconditional ceasefire by both sides in Sri Lanka, Times Online UK quoted Robert Evans, MEP, and Chair of the European Parliament Delegation for Relations with South Asia said.

However, he also said the time has come for the UN Secretary- General, Ban Ki Moon, to demand that a United Nations peacekeeping mission be allowed access to the country to avoid a civilian bloodbath. Full Text

Canadian intervention sought in Sri Lankan war zone

(DM)Toronto, Feb 13 (IANS) The powerful Canadian Tamil Congress (CTC) has again called upon Canada to put pressure on Sri Lanka to stop “genocide” against the civilians in the conflict zone.

“For far too long, the Sri Lankan government has operated with impunity, violating international human rights law and international humanitarian law, resulting in untold loss of lives, separation of families and psychological and mental suffering for the Tamil population,” CTC spokesman David Poopalapillai said Thursday. Full Text

India shifts stand on Sri Lanka

(DM)India has mended its stand on Sri Lanka, no longer insisting that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam should lay down arms as a pre-condition for talks with the government in Colombo for a political settlement.

Instead of asking the LTTE to lay down the arms, India now wants it to at least agree in principle to lay down the arms as that can pave the way for negotiations with the Sri Lankan government. Full Text

Tamil students protest outside school in Canada

  • Students are eager to enlighten the Canadian citizens on the humanitarian issue in Sri Lanka even though most of the institutions do not encourage it.
  • They want to build up a wider dialogue about the issue, bringing forward the tragic stories of their relatives and friends who were victimized by it.

Carrying signs and calling out chants, hundreds of high school Tamil-Canadian students from across the city are protesting outside the North York headquarters of Toronto District School Board. Full Text

DO WE NEED FOREIGN INTERVENTION?

Sixty-one years after Independence, Sri Lanka is mature enough to find answers to her own problems.

By Sumaiya Rizvi and Dianne Silva

(DM)The Daily Mirror reported yesterday of the decision made by the UK government in appointing a special envoy for Sri Lanka and the cabinet, as it were, rejecting this helping hand. Further the People for Equality and Relief in Lanka (PEARL) called on President Obama to appoint a special envoy to promote peace talks. Full Text

‘Don’t allow any foreign country to interfere’

(DM)Twenty five prominent bhikkus including several Anunayake Thera’s yesterday requested the President and the political establishment of the country to neither allow any foreign country, leader or organisation to interfere with the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of the country nor allow them to let terrorism raise its head again.

The bhikkus in a letter to the President said that such interference should be rejected and resisted when the country is at a crucial juncture since a valiant effort was being made to root out terrorism and establish an environment where people of all ethnicities and religious belief could live in peace and harmony. Full Text

India ‘insensitive’ towards Lankan Tamils' cause: Advani

(DM)NEW DELHI (PTI): Accusing the Congress-led UPA of being ‘insensitive’ to the Sri Lankan Tamils' cause, BJP's prime ministerial candidate L. K. Advani today said the decades-old ethnic conflict in the island nation can't be resolved through the use of brutal force.

Addressing hundreds of MDMK cadre and activists of pro-Eelam outfits who began a day-long fast under the leadership of Vaiko here, Mr. Advani said the focus of the entire nation at this moment should be towards "ending the sufferings of the innocent" Tamil civilians in neighbouring Sri Lanka. Full text

Basil denies 3-year stay

(daily Mirror)The government yesterday denied reports of plans to keep internally displaced people in ‘welfare villages’ for three years.

Presidential advisor Basil Rajapaksa who is in charge of resettlement told Daily Mirror the government was mainly focusing on the resettlement of the displaced as early as possible and in the safest way possible, with necessary facilities in place. Full Text

US Senate Foreign Relations Committee to hear on Lankan crisis

(DM)The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee is to conduct a hearing on the Sri Lankan crisis later this month, the Foreign Policy website said.

Last week, the committee assigned senators to head up regional subcommittees. Among the new assignments, Sen. Robert Casey (D-PA) is heading up the subcommittee on Middle East and South Asia; Sen. Jim Webb (D-VA) is heading the subcommittee on East Asia, a long-time passion of his; and Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) is heading up a new subcommittee on global women's issues, an interest of hers and of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Full Text

Soldiers of humanity

Fighting a silent battle to save innocent from the evil grip of LTTE

(defence.lk)The plight of Sri Lankan Tamil citizens held in captive by the LTTE terrorists has been the most discussed topic

these days among local and international bodies in the country. Many foreign bodies and international media are continuing to make weird comments on the situation with an unconcealed effort to detach the LTTE terrorist from the plight of the civilians. Full Text

Ellawala Medananda thero donates wheel chars for war heroes

(defence.lk)Venerable Ellawala Medananda thero, leader of the Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU), donated wheel chairs for the war heroes how were disabled while serving in the battlefront to defend the motherland.

The donation was coordinated by the Seva Vanitha Unit of the Defence Ministry and three wheel chairs were handed over to the three disabled war heroes in a charm function held at the defence ministry premises this morning, 13 February. Full Text

Intense fighting reported in Pudukudiirippu; heavy damages to terrorists

(defence.lk)Infantrymen of 641 and 642 Brigades serving under Task Force 4 (TF4) had several confrontations with LTTE terrorists in general area Puthukkudiyiruppu inflicting heavy damages to the enemy yesterday, 12 February.

Snipers deployed in 641 Brigade have gunned down 4 LTTE terrorists ahead of the defence line in two separate occasions, military report received from the battlefront said. Full Text

1657 Civilians reach to government controlled area

(defence.lk)A total of 1657 Tamil civilians who were kept as hostages by the LTTE terrorists have crossed over to the liberated areas throughout yesterday, 13 February, as security forces have extended more withdrawal routes for the innocent civilians.

1208 civilians sought protection with the security forces of the 58 Division in Vishvamadu area during the day hours yesterday. Troops of 58 Division now are being engaged in a mission to extend the withdrawal routes to cerate safe passages for the Tamil civilians forcefully held by the terrorists. Full text

58 Div troops inflict damages to enemy; 2 LTTE bodies uncovered - North of A-35

(defence.lk)Troops of 58 Division presently operating in north of A-35 road (Paranthan - Mullattivu) had several confrontations with LTTE terrorists in general area Kuppilankulam yesterday, 12 February, while on offensive to gain more LTTE hiding areas. Full Text

Troops of 57 Div uncovered more LTTE military items and vehicles - Visuamadu

(defence.lk)Troops of 57 Division have uncovered more LTTE military items and vehicles while conducting further consolidating operations in general area Visuamadu yesterday, 12 February.

Infantrymen of 16 Sri Lanka Light Infantry (16 SLLI) have uncovered 68 claymore mines along with many other mines from general area west of Visuamadu while conducting a search operation. Full Text

Friday, February 13, 2009

Gaza and Sri Lanka

(TI)On Monday 9th in Dharmapuram, a suicide bomber mingling with civilians coming to the Safe Zones declared by the Govt., blew herself up killing 28 and injuring 60. Two days later in Puthukudiruppu, the LTTE opened fire on civilians fleeing from LTTE held areas killing 19 and injuring 69.

The LTTE is now taking cover behind a human shield after a large part of the Northern Sri Lanka which they controlled has shrunk to a few square kilometres. Therefore, the tigers who are under extreme pressure after their long string of military losses have responded by stepping up terrorist attacks on civilians crossing from the LTTE controlled areas. If not for the tigers taking cover behind the civilians the war against terrorism in Sri Lanka would have been over by now. Full Text

Stopping war: Prabhakaran's only option

(TI)The LTTE is making a virtue of necessity by agreeing to piecemeal evacuation missions. It is using such feigned humanitarian concerns to stem the rising tide of international opprobrium and obtain breathers in the hope that some miracle would happen and it would be able to escape decapitation. Therefore, the LTTE may try to spread out small scale evacuation operations over a long period of time by offering to release a small number of hostages at a time. Full Text

LTTE Terrorists and civilian hostages

Wick Gankanda California, USA

Letter to Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Dear Senator John Kerry - the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,

(TI)As a US citizen and a fan of yours, I worked with Moveon.org in 2004 to try to get you elected as the President of the United States. We all walked the streets of Raleigh, North Carolina to get out the vote. Currently, I am very concerned about the situation in Sri Lanka. I am equally concerned about your response to this situation as the Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. I have noticed that many politicians and the media have been successfully misled by the world’s most ruthless terrorist group the LTTE Terrorists/Tamil Tiger Terrorists. I found your statements in the release titled "Kerry and Lugar Concerned about Humanitarian Situation in Sri Lanka" inconsistent with what we see on the ground daily for the past 25 years. Therefore I hope this letter will assist in understanding the true nature of the fight against terror in Sri Lanka. Full Text

LTTE arms factory seized

(DN)Security Forces making speedy advance to liberate the entire Mullaitivu district, seized a massive LTTE arms factory in Suthanthirapuram by troops of 58 division yesterday morning.

Military spokesman Brigadier Udaya Nanayakkara said troops attached to the 58 division under command of Brigadier Shavendra Silva captured an LTTE claymore mine and 81mm mortar manufacturing factory in the North of Suthanthirapuram. "Troops consolidating their position in the Sudhanthirapuram area spotted and seized this highly fortified LTTE arms factory," he added. Full Text

Countdown to final battle begins

*New No fire zone declared

*Tigers fail to reverse Security Forces victories

(DN)The LTTE used to explain each and every defeat they were facing as tactical withdrawals and continued to do so until they faced their humiliating defeat in their so-called capital Kilinochchi and their strongholds Pooneryn, Elephant Pass and Mullaitivu.

At the initial stage the LTTE warned that they would bring the war to Colombo if Security Forces try to fight them in the North and East. But they failed to bring war to Colombo as they predicted though they could explode few bombs targeting innocent civilians in some places in Colombo and suburbs. Full Text

Countering misinformation

One of the salient points of the conflict in Sri Lanka is that many countries, organizations and individuals seem to be misinformed about the ground realities in the North.

One reason for this status quo is the LTTE’s propaganda machine which has through the years managed to paint a completely wrong picture of the Sri Lankan Government, the Security Forces and even the majority community to the outside world. Their version of events gained currency as opposed to the Lankan State’s version. Full Text

Home

Ticking together...

(daily news)The links between Ranil Wickremesinghe and LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran were so strong during the period they negotiated for a peaceful solution to the North East conflict and this clock clearly shows how strong their ties were during peace time for the LTTE to engrave the picture of Ranil Wickremesinghe along with their leader Velupillai Prabhakaran.

This clock made in Thailand was found by the 7 Sinha Regiment troops attached to the 58 Division in Suthanthirampuram area during their operation.

“We cannot go for a truce with the LTTE now”

Q:The government is facing a very serious accusation of carrying out genocide against the Tamil people. How do you view these charges?

(DM)How can you call this genocide? For the LTTE when there is a killing here and there it is genocide. Certainly 20 years back what happened in Chemmani or to the unarmed 500 policemen who were massacred is genocide. But it is not happening now. Till two weeks back no one could place any blame on the government with their conduct of the war; but from last week there has been some disappointments. And because of that all the good the Army and the Air Force was doing would be damaged. Full Text

End of LTTE an opportunity to make full use of sea: President

By Sandun A Jayasekera

The government will never let the LTTE exploit the skills of Tamil youth as shown by their capability to manufacture submarines for destructive purposes, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said yesterday.

(DM)Addressing the second convocation of the National Institute of Fisheries and Nautical Engineering (NIFNE) also known as ‘Sagara Vishva Vidyalaya’, at the Presidential Secretariat, President Rajapaksa said there was a time in the recent past when Sri Lanka could not claim sovereignty over its territorial waters. “We cannot win the economic war without holding sway over our territorial waters. Sri Lanka was lagging far behind other countries who have been progressing at a fast pace. Hence, we must be determined to overcome these lapses and contribute towards the global endeavour to ‘win the sea’ in the 21st century,” the President stressed. Full Text

TNA says no to APRC

By Jamila Najmuddin

(DM)The Tamil National Alliance (TNA) said it would not take part in the All Party Representatives Committee (APRC) even if an invitation was put forward at this late hour as they felt there was no purpose in the process.

TNA MP Sivanathan Kishore told Daily Mirror the APRC was not recognised by the TNA as the party had not been included in the Committee when it was being formed. Full Text

LTTE to create mayhem in the North: NFF

By Yohan Perera

(DM)The National Freedom Front (NFF) charged yesterday that the LTTE was to create mayhem in the North by forcing over 200 Tamil women to jump into a big fire in protest against the military onslaught of terrorists in Wanni.

NFF Leader Wimal Weerawansa told a news conference ‘sathi pooja’ type act was to show the world that the civilians were with the LTTE which was far from the truth. Full Text

India appeals to Govt, LTTE to resume negotiations

(DM)Conveying concerns over the “plight of civilians” displaced in Sri Lanka due to the military conflict, Indian President Pratibha Patil yesterday appealed to the Sri Lankan government and to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to return to the negotiating table for a negotiated settlement.

“This can be achieved if, simultaneously, the Government of Sri Lanka suspends its military operations and the LTTE declares its willingness to lay down arms and to begin talks with the government,” she told the Indian parliament. Full Text

Doctors leave Mullaitivu

(defence.lk)The ministry of health has issued orders to doctors and other health staff to leave Mullaitivu district immediately.

Health Services Director General Dr Ajith Mendis said the staff was asked to leave as they would not be able to function as usual due to the on going conflict. Full Text

Cabinet rejects special UK envoy

UK envoy says he will liaise with all parties

(defence.lk)The Cabinet has rejected the appointment of a special envoy to Sri Lanka by the British government, Daily Mirror learns. British Prime Minister Gordon Brown had appointed Des Browne MP as his Special Envoy to Sri Lanka yesterday.

The official announcement was made late last night. However, well informed government sources said that Cabinet, which had been informed of the move earlier in the day by the British Prime Minister, had decided to reject it on the grounds that such an appointment would be an infringement of Sri Lankas sovereignty. Full Text

Catholic nun claims shot at by LTTE, while evacuating sick people

(By: Walter Jayawardhana)
(defence.lk)Quoting a Catholic nun who was trying to evacuate sick people in a non-liberated village in the Mullaittivu District in Northern Sri Lanka, Al Jazeera television channel reported that LTTE terrorists shot at the sick people in a bid to stop them from leaving.

"When we tried to escape with civilians, LTTE fired at me. I got shot in my leg," sister Louise, a Catholic nun who tried to steer civilians away from the fighting, from Puttumatalan village was quoted having said on January 12. Full Text

'No fire zone' declared further facilitating civilian safety

(defence.lk)The Sri Lankan security forces headquarters in Wanni, in response to the worsening plight of the thousands held hostage by LTTE terrorists in Mullaittivu, has declared a new Civilian Safety Zone (CSZ), with effect from Thursday (Feb 12).

The new 12km long safe region demarcated along the Mullaittivu western coast is expected to facilitate flow of humanitarian aid and medical supplies for the people stranded with LTTE. The International Committee of the Red Cross(ICRC) has duly been informed of the new safe zone, defence sources reported. Full Text

Foreign Minister meets with the ICRC Head

(defence.lk)In view of the rapidly unfolding situation in the North, the Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama met with the Head of the International Committee for Red Cross (ICRC) Mr. Paul Castella in order to discuss the present situation in the conflict zone and to exchange views on the difficulties encountered by the ICRC so that both sides could explore ways and means of jointly addressing the issues at hand. The Foreign Secretary Palitha Kohona and Senior Officials of the Foreign Ministry were associated with the discussion. Full Text

Sri Lanka welcomes U.S. decision to designate the 'Tamil Foundation' as LTTE front

(defence.lk)The Government of Sri Lanka appreciates the U.S. Government's decision to designate the 'Tamil Foundation' as an organization extending support to LTTE terrorism and to freeze all its U.S. assets. This decision also prohibits U.S. persons from engaging in any transactions with the Tamil Foundation. The U.S. authorities have charged that the LTTE uses charitable organizations such as the Tamil Foundation to raise funds to support its terror campaign. The U.S. Treasury which maintains vigilance on the financial dealings of terrorist organizations has vowed to aggressively target attempts by terrorists to use charities and other front organizations to propagate terrorism against innocent civilians. Full Text

Navy assists in evacuating sick and wounded Tamil civilians in Mullaithivu

(defence.lk)Sri Lanka Navy has assisted in the evacuation of the sick and the wounded Tamil civilians held hostage by LTTE in the non-liberated areas in Mullaithivu. During the first phase of the evacuation, 356 persons were brought safely under the Naval escort to Trincomalee for urgent medical treatment on board "MV Green Ocean" under the ICRC flag on 10th February 2009. Full Text

Army 58 Div makes significant gains on battleground- North of A-35

(defence.lk)Sri Lanka Army 58 Division maneuvering north of the A-35 road (Paranthan- Mullaittivu) has been fighting pitched battles with the terrorists in the Kuppilankulam and Tamarankulam areas since last week. Battlefield reports indicate that troops have withstood heavy terrorist resistances while scoring significant victories against the terrorists. Full Text

Troops avert LTTE attempt to cripple normalcy - Jaffna

(defence.lk)An LTTE gunman succumbed swallowing a cyanide capsule while another was shot dead fleeing, after firing at troops engaged in a route clearing patrol near the Terunaveli junction in Jaffna, today (Feb 12) at around 12.30p.m. A soldier had received minor injuries and was immediately evacuated to the Teaching Hospital in Jaffna. Full Text

US treasury targets LTTE front office

(defence.lk)Washington, DC - The U.S. Department of the Treasury Wednesday (Feb 11), targeted the support network of the Sri Lanka-based designated terrorist group Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) by designating the U.S.-based Tamil Foundation under Executive Order 13224. Executive Order 13224 targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism. Full Text

Government tells Tamil Diaspora to realise the suffering LTTE has brought on Sri Lankan Tamils

(defence.lk)Sri Lanka's Human Rights Minister, Mahinda Samarasingha Tuesday (Feb 10) called on the sections of Tamil Diaspora acting supportive of the LTTE terrorism in Sri Lanka to realise the true nature of the terrorist outfit they have been supporting for last 25 years. Highlighting the latest LTTE attacks on Tamil civilians, the Minister said it is the time for the Tamil Diaspora to let go of their support to the LTTE and to bring pressure on the outfit to let go the innocent civilians it holds as a human shield in Wanni. Full Text

Thursday, February 12, 2009

All Sri Lankan citizens are welcome

A PROTEST AGAINST THE LTTE IS TO BE HELD ON THE 14TH OF FEBRUARY FROM 1.00PM TO 5.30PM IN FRONT OF THE BRITISH PRIME MINISTER'S HOUSE-NO.-10, DOWNING STREET, LONDON
Graphic1 by you.

LTTE trying to hold on through harassing technique

(DW)An LTTE video was released recently showing what seems to be a Mechanized Infantry-style attack. A few soldiers were killed in the attack at Puthukudiirippu and the LTTE is obviously making a huge deal out of it, as you can see in the video.

The video first shows what looks like a Chinese YW-531H (T-85), an older version of the T-89, which the SLA Mech Infantry Division uses extensively now. From external appearance the two units look similar except for the rear doors (3rd frame). Next, a mounted MPMG is shown (4th frame). Full Text

The Beginnings of the End Game

(longranger)At the beginning of the year 591 was positioned along the MULLATIVU coast at CHILAWATTA held back by two earth bunds connecting the sea front from the East to the lagoon at the West. Unlike the massive ditch cum bunds 57 and 58 has to contend with at AKKARAYANKULAM or PARANTHAN-IRANAMADU areas, these bunds were not so formidable. Primary reason can be attributed to the soft sandy soil of the area. Another reason is the disruptions to the fortifications caused by the forward exploitation forces of 59.

593 meanwhile had overcome the defensive earth bunds north of MULLIYAWALI and TANNIYUTTU and have positioned themselves in the woodlands just South of PUTHUKKUDIYIRUPPU buildup area. To their flank west 592 and TFIV are stationed. Full Text

Terror advocacy and music do not meet

Maya Arulpragasam slumdogs music culture with her sympathy for the Tigers

By Mohan Gunaratnam

(February 11, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian)While Maya Aruplpragasam is making a great name for herself in the world of music and has won prestigious nominations at the peak of the film world, she has soiled and smudged her name rather sadly with her public relations effort to stand up for the most brutal terrorist organization in the world. This amounts to “slumdogging” humanity’s relaxing means of melody and rhythms and replacing them in her mind to promote terror and violence. Full Text

Associated Press Interviews escaping Tamils shot by LTTE in Vanni - Genocide exposed

By Lafir Mathalif, Colombo

(February 11, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) In a major exposure against LTTE propaganda, Associated Press today broke the story of latest fate of Vanni civilians who were shot by LTTE trying to escape the human shields.

"My wife and child got killed in the shooting by the rebels," said Selvadorai Thavakumar, 23, from Kilinochchi, the former de facto rebel capital captured by the government in January. Full Text

US Treasury imposes sanctions on Tamil Foundation

Washington, 12 February, (Asiantribune.com): The US Treasury designated the US-based Tamil Foundation on Wednesday for acting as a front for a Sri Lankan terrorist organization.

According to the Treasury, the head of the Tamil Foundation is also president of the Tamils Rehabilitation Organization, which was named a Specially Designated Global Terrorist in November 2007. Full Text

Mmischievous media reports distorted international perception of developments in Northern Sri Lanka - Ambassador Aryasinha

Brussels, 12 February, (Asiantribune.com): Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg and the EU Ravinatha Aryasinha has said, a series of mischievous reports filed over the past two weeks based on LTTE propaganda, had distorted the international perception of the ground situation in Northern Sri Lanka. This had detracted from sufficient attention being paid to the difficult task being accomplished by the government and the security forces, as well as the atrocities committed against civilians by the LTTE. Full Text

Rebuilding the North

(TI)As the war nears its final days, with the areas under the LTTE control rapidly shrinking, it is reported that the trapped civilians are arriving in cleared areas in their numbers. Very soon, the government has to address the greater challenge of resettling these civilians, and rebuilding the war ravaged north. With the heightened military offensive and the reiterated call to surrender, these displaced will soon be joined by LTTE surrenders whose leaders have failed to defend them. Full Text

LTTE a one man band representing the views and aspirations of its brutal leader

Troops capture Chalai Paul Harris

(TI)The writer and military analyst Paul Harris, who worked in Sri Lanka between 1996 ad 2002 as correspondent for Jane’s Intelligence Review and the London Daily Telegraph, spoke to SPUR yesterday with his reaction to current events in Sri Lanka. (Harris was forced to leave Sri Lanka in November 2002 at 24 hours notice after the government of Ranil Wickremesinghe pulled his journalist visa. Harris was critical of the peace process with the LTTE).

"The government of Sri Lanka and its President are to be congratulated on the prosecution of the war with the LTTE which has been accomplished with resolve and courage. This is in stark contrast to the supine efforts of previous governments who flinched from taking on the LTTE which had, accordingly, been able to engender a myth of invulnerability. Only six or seven years ago, it appeared that Sri Lanka might be terminally divided: a fate which would have doomed this unique and wonderful country as a sovereign entity. Full Text

Looking back, moving forward

(TI)Tamil civilians, who escaped from areas controlled by Tamil fighters, are registered with the military at a transit center close to Vavuniya Feb. 8, 2009.

The culmination of the series of victories of the humanitarian mission launched by the Sri Lanka Security Forces under the far – sighted leadership of President Mahinda Rajapakse to eradicate terrorism will usher in a new era of peace for the people of Sri Lanka, in general and for the Tamil community, in particular. Full Text

Enough already with the genocide talk

(TI)The accusations of genocide in Sri Lanka are getting annoying… and not in the usual ways. Anybody who takes the charge seriously betrays a highly annoying ignorance about the state of affairs between Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

Genocide is not happening in Sri Lanka. Plenty of other nasty things are; but genocide is not one of them. Full Text

Time running out for trapped civilians

(TI)With the Sri Lanka Army now poised to finish off the Tigers on the Vanni front, a tripartite agreement to evacuate 160 sick and wounded from Putumattalan, on the north-eastern coast today (Feb 12) is likely to be the last organised evacuation.

Authoritative military sources said further evacuation of civilians was unlikely in view of the rapidly intensifying close quarter confrontations between the Army and the LTTE. The 55 Division, commanded by Brigadier Prasanna Silva, operating at Chalai, formerly the largest Sea Tiger base on the north-eastern coast is advancing on Putimattalan. Full Text

Tiger financier hoodwinking Tamil diaspora nabbed in Italy

Nabbed for selling outdated food to customers

(DN)An LTTE financier in Palermo, Italy who played hide and seek with Italian Secret Police by using ingenious methods to collect money from the Tamil diaspora for the LTTE was hauled up before Court for selling outdated food to his customers.

S. Muthiah alias 'Yohan', the owner of 'Ajerthan' B & V', one of the biggest stores in Sicily, in the city of Palermo, where there is a large concentration of Tamils, is a supporter of the LTTE and a collecting agent to fund the LTTE terror machine. Full Text

France condemns LTTE Visuamadu attack

(DN)France strongly condemns the recent attack in Visuamadu that killed many civilians.

It is a particularly heinous act, as it targeted a rescue center for displaced persons. France expresses sincerest condolences to the victims' families and loved-ones. Full Text

Prabhakaran reduced to a paper Tiger

(DN)Velupillai Prabhakaran’s instant and damning reprisals against innocent civilians used too often as sure-fire arsenal have evaporated making him a paper tiger. Many believe that his attack on civilians at Puthukudiruppu sealed the Eelam cry for good. He is now a refugee from justice and a war criminal awaiting arrest; a bunker-hopping fugitive fighting for his life.

Prabhakaran lost it all by stepping up terror attacks on civilians as a means to arrest the rapid disintegration of his ill-cherished voyeurism in the face of Armed Forces’s final thrust to eradicate him. Civilians defied constant LTTE fire as they crossed in larger numbers over to the Government-controlled areas. Full Text

Prabhakaran reduced to a paper Tiger

(DN)Velupillai Prabhakaran’s instant and damning reprisals against innocent civilians used too often as sure-fire arsenal have evaporated making him a paper tiger. Many believe that his attack on civilians at Puthukudiruppu sealed the Eelam cry for good. He is now a refugee from justice and a war criminal awaiting arrest; a bunker-hopping fugitive fighting for his life.

Prabhakaran lost it all by stepping up terror attacks on civilians as a means to arrest the rapid disintegration of his ill-cherished voyeurism in the face of Armed Forces’s final thrust to eradicate him. Civilians defied constant LTTE fire as they crossed in larger numbers over to the Government-controlled areas. Full Text

Professional counselling for those kept as LTTE hostages

(DN)Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry officials have discovered that the people who had been kept as hostages by the LTTE suffer from severe psychological trauma due to various hardships they faced in the hands of the LTTE.

The Ministry will offer them professional counselling shortly, Healthcare and Nutrition Ministry sources said. Full Text

Palestinians thank President

(DN)Ambassador of the Palestinian General Delegation to the UK, Prof. Manuel Hassassian, paying a courtesy call on Sri Lankan High Commissioner in London Justice Nihal Jayasinghe at the University of Oxford conveyed the appreciation and gratitude of the Palestinians to President Mahinda Rajapaksa for championing the Palestinian cause for many decades. Full Text

Ministry regrets bias of UN 'experts'

(DN)The Ministry of Disaster Management and Human Rights in a release said yesterday that it regrets a recent statement of 10 UN experts, that is supposedly about the "suppression of criticism, impunity, but which deals at length with the current situation in the north, where forces are battling a terrorist movement. Full Text

Take courageous, just measures required to curb terrorism

Mahanayakes tell President

(DN)Four Mahanayake Theras yesterday told President Mahinda Rajapaksa to take courageous and just measures required to curb terrorism and other national issues, jointly with all political and religious leaders by shedding differences aside, without leaving any room for unnecessary foreign interference in order to safeguard the territorial integrity and peace and harmony of the country. Full Text

Tigers push civilians away from safe zone

(DN)The LTTE which has been disappointed with the way the exodus of civilians fleeing from the Tiger controlled area, have forced the civilians to go further North East of Puthukuduyiruppu and South of Chalai in their bid to keep them under their control for a long period, military sources told the Daily News yesterday.

“The LTTE had pushed the civilians towards the Putumatalan area North East of Puthukuduyiruppu”, military officials told the Daily News. Full Text

TMVP disarming

  • June 29, 2008: TMVP says will not disarm until the LTTE is wiped out
  • October 12, 2008: Pillayan says TMVP will be disarmed soon
  • December 28, 2008: Media report says government to disarm TMVP

By Jamila Najmuddin

(DM)The TMVP says it has begun to disarm its cadres in line with its recent policy and hopes to complete the process very soon. Full Text

Situation under-reported – Ban Ki-moon

Sri Lankan issue not on Security Council agenda

(DM)UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says the situation in Sri Lanka has been, to some extent, under reported.

Responding to a question raised at a news briefing at the UN on Tuesday, the UN Secretary General said that he had already dispatched his political director to Sri Lanka and is also considering dispatching a humanitarian assessment team whenever he thinks it's appropriate. Full Text

The history of ceasefires revisited

(DM)On May 14, 1985, LTTE killed a total of 146 Sinhalese men, women and children, when they hijacked a bus and drove to the Sri Maha Bodhiya, and began firing indiscriminately into a crowd that included nuns and monks. In June 1985, on an initiative of the Government of India, the leaders of the Tamil militant movements agreed to a 'cease-fire' on grounds of creating a 'congenial' atmosphere for 'peace talks'. Sponsored by India the talks took place in Thimpu, capital city of Bhutan in July and August of 1985. Full Text

‘The fate of civilians’

(DM)A message from the Rt. Revd. Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo

Two recent incidents of violence unleashed against innocent and defenceless Tamil civilians by the LTTE must be condemned unreservedly by peace loving Sri Lankans of all communities, says Colombo Bishop Duleep de Chickera. Full Text

Suspected suicide cadres arrested by TID

(daily mirror)Five suspected LTTE cadres have been arrested by the Terrorism Investigation Division (TID) from Kuchchiveli area yesterday. They had been in possession of two motorcycles modified and loaded with explosives for suicide attacks.

The last nail in the LTTE coffin?

(BL)The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were restricted by the military to an area of 185 sq. kms by February 4, and, by February 10, it was further restricted to an area of 121 sq. kms. To be precise, the Tigers have lost some 64 sq. km. within six days.
“Do not let the army recover my body. You should destroy my body.” Said by Prabakaran. Full Text

No sympathy from any quarter

(BL)The LTTE has demonstrated in no uncertain terms through its barbaric actions in the last few days as to why it has no sympathiser in any quarter other than maybe a few die-hard loyalists in the Tamil Diaspora still living in denial over the atrocities carried out by that organisation. A movement that began as a resistance movement against the perceived discrimination against the Tamil community and then metamorphasised into a formidable fighting force after 1983 on the back of the ethnic violence unleashed against the minority, has today descended into a desperate outfit willing to kill its own people on whose behalf they have claim to be fighting a ferocious guerrilla war against the Sri Lankan state. Full Text

Govt. to return displaced within year: Official

(BL)COLOMBO, (AFP) - Sri Lanka plans to have tens of thousands of civilians displaced by the recent wave of fighting back home again within a year, a senior official said on Tuesday.

Some 32,000 men, women and children who fled the northern war zone this year are now housed in temporary shelters in government-controlled areas of Vavuniya, Kilinochchi and Jaffna, Foreign Secretary Palitha Kohona said. Full Text

West 'trying to save LTTE'

(BBC)A group of Buddhist monks and Sinhala nationalist leaders are accusing the West of trying to save the LTTE as the rebel group is facing 'imminent defeat'

The Patriotic National Movement (PNM) said the West as well as the local and international Non Governmental Organisation (NGOs) of interfering in Sri Lankan affairs.

On tuesday, PNM activists protested in front of British high Commission in Colombo urging the Western leaders to stay away from Sri Lanka's internal affairs. Full Text