Monthly Archives: February 2007
By Walter Jayawardhana
FORMER CHIEF MINISTER JAYALALITHA JAYARAM BLAMES TAMIL NADU GOVERNMENT AND POLICE FOR FAILING TO CURB TAMIL TIGERS
Former Chief minister of Tamil Nadu and General Secretary of opposition All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) leader Jayalaitha Jayaram accused the Tamil Nadu Police and Chief Minister Karunanidhi for failing to take action to curb the actions of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Tamil Nadu.
She sought the intervention of the Central government in New Delhi to safeguard national security and said the intensified activities of the extremists and terrorist organizations have been made possible due to the prevailing situation in the state.
Jayalalitha Jeyaram said the recent seizures of weapons and ammunition off the Tamil Nadu coast were only tip of the iceberg and said there are reports that uninhabited islands off Ramesweram had been converted into arsenals of extremists and terrorists and terrorists are visiting Tamil Nadu very often.
Jayalalitha said besides smuggling the weapons and ammuniion at a large scale to Sri Lanka large stockpiles of arms have been created in the Tamil Nadu state.
She said if those terrorist activities are not immediately curbed those might result in raising demands, building intensified campaigns, holding conferences and bringing out publications in support of extremism and terrorism in the state of Tamil Nadu.
She said the stand of her party AIADMK is that while stressing the unity of the Tamils to find a solution to the issue, the extremist groups in the island should never be encouraged.
She said the government of India should strive for finding a solution to the Sri Lankan problem. She said the issues cannot be solved at all by arms struggles and her party was strongly opposed to the extremism and terrorism. Though some sections in Tamil Nadu argued that the LTTE should be supported for Tamil ethnic affinity, the AIADMK did not accept the theory, as it was of the view that such action would ultimately pave the way for the dawn of extremism and terrorism in the State, she said.
By Walter Jayawardhana
TISSA ATTANAYAKA CHALLENGES THE GOVERNMENT TO ABROGATE THE CONTROVERSIAL CEASEFIRE AGREEMENT IF THEY COULD
At a meeting held at Polonnaruwa in the Norh Central Province of Sri Lanka, the main opposition in parliament, the United National Party challenged President Mahinda Rajapaksa to abrogate the Ceasefire Agreement his leader Ranil Wickremesinghe signed with Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam leader Velupillai Prabhakaran.
Attanayaka accused Rajapaksa of giving evasive answers regarding the CFA and charged his responses like, “ I don’t care there is a CFA or not,” kind of answers were not suitable for a leader of a country.
Attanayaka, a protégé of UNP leader Ranil Wickremesinghe is believed to be uttering his leader’s policy in various statements UNP reformists say.
The Norway brokered CFA was signed by Ranil Wickremesinghe and LTTE leader Velupillai Prabhakaran without the approval of Sri Lanka’s parliament and Executive president of the country and has no value as a legal document, according to some experts, in law.
Both of them signed the document without seeing each other. At first it was believed that it was drafted by the Norwegians. But later it was revealed it was drafted by Eric Solheim, a Norwegian leftist with the help of LTTE’s advisor Anton Balasingham with a LTTE bias.
While the LTTE violated it more than six thousand times, entering Colombo to kill intelligence officers of the security forces, assassinating Tamil leaders with impunity, kidnapping Tamil children to be conscripted as child soldiers, smuggling in tons and tons of sophisticated weapons from Europe, Asia and India Ranil Wickremesinghe’s government did not retaliate trying not to break a word of the CFA. The LTTE’s open policy was not to get involved in the peace process and to leave the peace talks abruptly during the reign of Ranil Wickremesinghe abusing the CFA to achieve its separatist goals, while buying time. But the UNP policy was to be patient during all these violations.
The patience was described by a confidante of Ranil Wickremesinghe recently. A go between of the UNP and LTTE and UNP parliamentarian said the UNP never expected the killings and the bombings, the kidnappings and the murders of the opponents would completely stop by the CFA. Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena the confidante of Ranil Wickremesinghe said the CFA was only a stepping stone and his party never expected those violations would come to a standstill. In brief the CFA, according to UNP, is a document that could be violated by the LTTE and for the sake of a greater peace in the horizon they had to tolerate all that.
The kind of retaliation by the Rajapaksa government in the case of the blockage of civilian irrigation water using military force was very much disliked by a UNP spokesman. The UNP represented by Dr. Rajitha Senaratne said they boycotted the All Party Conference and emphasized his leader would not attend conferences to listen to war talks. But ironically Senaratne later joined the Rajapaksa government. Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena and Tissa Attanayaka more loyal to their leader call such retaliation mismanagement of the CFA signed on February 22 2002. They believe a peace environment should be created by the government despite the violations by the LTTE.
But the war this time was initiated at Mavil Aru and escalated by the LTTE. The government also violated the CFA. President Rajapaksa boldly called there were no LTTE controlled areas in Sri Lanka and chased out the LTTE from the Eastern Province except from few hideouts in the Thoppigala jungles in the Eastern Province.
There is no doubt CFA is dead despite the UNP has vowed to preserve it. It looks more like a stuffed mummy, a diplomat recently said. According to him there is no point in abrogating it. True, it has many defects. It was born that way. Some Norwegians like Erick Solheim is being hated as much as the the cruel Portuguese General who participated in the occupation of Sri Lanka in the 16th century, De Asevedo. He is being likened as an imperial agent, lacking any kind of impartiality, siding with the Tamil Tigers. But many diplomats say at better times if there is a congenial environment to peace CFA could be repaired and upholstered as a more comfortable vehicle to reach peace, after getting rid of its defects and Solheim, of course. Creating a new vehicle, which is the other choice could become a Herculean task, the diplomat said. That may be the reason why the government is not abrogating it, the diplomat said.
By Walter Jayawardhana
SRI LANKA’S CONSUL GENERAL IN LOS ANGELES SAYS TERRORIST GROUPS EXCHANGE TERROR TACTICS
The Consul General of Sri Lanka in Los Angeles Jaliya Wickramasuriya told the monthly meeting of all Consul Generals in Los Angeles that one reason all civilized nations should be united against terrorism is because all terrorist Groups are united against all civilized nations in the world today.
He said, for instance many inventions of terror like suicide boats and suicide jackets by Sri Lanka’s most innovative terrorist group the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in no time were transferred to Al Queda for a price although the two groups are not ideologically similar.
“That fact alone,” said Jaliya Wickramasuriya, “alarmingly indicate that all civilized nations represented by us should be united in fighting the common enemy of the 21st century – terrorism. “
Wickramasuriy told the representatives of many nations of the world who were meeting at a luncheon meeting hosted by the Japanese Consul General Kazuo Kodama that Sri Lanka has been attacked by some of the worst terrorists in the world similar to the ones who glaringly exposed themselves by the barbaric attack on 9/11.
Wickramasuriya said, the most innovative well-armed terrorist group has beeen hampering the progress of the country for the last two decades.
He said the vicious terrorist group is hell bent on dividing the small 25,000 square mile island and carve out a mono-ethnic Fascist regime.
“We are a parliamentary democracy. So, we have to take extra measures to protect human rights while fighting this terrorist menace that makes it more difficult,” he said.
He said the warm reception of the Consular Corps reminded him of his home, Sri Lanka, a very hospitable nation. He said back at home any visitor to even the poorest home would never be allowed to leave without being offered a warm cup of tea.
He said, “At home we greet any visitor on arrival or departure or anyone else with the traditional greeting – AYUBOWAN meaning may you live long. Likely, let me greet you by saying Ayubowan.”
Wickramasuriya made a special thanks to the Dean of the Consular Corps Roy G. Young for making the coordination among the Consul General’s a very comfortable one for all. He also presented a gold plated Tea chest to him on behalf of the government of Sri Lanka.
At the luncheon the Japanese Consul General Kazuo Kodama spoke on the Japanese foreign policy – Focus on East Asia. Invited special guest Dr. Jodi Finkel, Assistant Professor of Politlcal Sclence, Loyola Marymount University, delivering the keynote address spoke to the foreign envoys on “The Unintended Consequences of Limited Reforms -The rise of the new left in Latin Amelica” The Vice Dean C.G.Brasioli of Italy introduced the newly arrived Chefs de Poste Jaliya Wickramasuriya of Sri Lanka and Mohamed Abu Zafa of Bangladesh at the luncheon.
Pic by Wendy Wagner
(1) Jaliya Wickramasuriya speaking at the meeting
(2) Dean of the Consular Corps Roy G Young, Consul General of belize receiving a gold plated tea chest from Sri lanka Consul General jaliya Wickramasuriya
President Mahinda Rajapakse is due to arrive in China this morning starting a seven-day visit with the hope of strengthening the bilateral ties between the two countries. The visit also coincides with the 50th anniversary of Sino-Lanka diplomatic relations. Several agreements on Sino-Lanka bilateral co-operation will be signed during the President’s tour in China.
During his stay in China the president will hold discussions with his Chinese counterpart Hu Jintao, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and senior government officials. Among the Memoranda of Understanding to be signed during the President’s visit are the Hambantota Port development project, Oil exploration in the Western coast, student exchange, cultural and economic co-operation, agriculture, and co-operation in urban development and water supply.
The special attention will be paid on encouraging Chinese investments in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka also plans to tap the fast growing Chinese tourism market. The President will visit Beijing, Guangzhou and Shanghai and meet potential investors. The President will also gift the Baby elephant called “Migara” to the Chinese President. A Samadhi Buddha Statue will also be presented to the Chinese government by the Sri Lankan delegation to mark the historical cultural relationship between the two countries. Parallel to the Sri Lankan president’s visit to China a Sri Lankan trade and tourist exhibition will also be held in China.
By Walter Jayawardhana
In the continuing military thrusr in the North East of the cadres of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam gave up two more camps named Tango One and Baskaran Base fled to the jungles of Wannin the Ministry of Defense announced.
A large quantity of ammunition mines and explosives like C4 was among the things the terrorists left when they fled published lists of the army show.
With the capture of these two camps a total number of five camps of the LTTE were left in the hands of the army in the North East connecting the path to the LTTE’s Wanni hideout, the Ministry of Defense said.
The following is the statement the Ministry issued:
“Two LTTE transit Bases identified as “Tango One’ and ‘Baskaran Base’ were swamped by the SL security forces in a successful ‘joint and clearing operation’ conducted in the thickets of the northern part of the east port city Trincomalee.
“According to defence sources a total of five LTTE transit bases were overrun during the past 72 hours, in the un-cleared patches between Nilaveli and Kumburupiddiya, 15 miles North East of Trincomalee.
“The elite Naval Special Boat Squadron (SBS) and the Naval Patrolmen unit troops recovered a supply of weapons, explosives and ammunition during the successful clearing operation.
“Military intelligence circuits believe that the LTTE terrorists have fled further north east towards the un-cleared Wanni area, unable to withstand the joint military thrust.