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Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
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Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Tamilnation > Struggle for Tamil Eelam > Conflict Resolution - Tamil Eelam - Sri Lanka > Norwegian Peace Initiative > Geneva Talks & After > LTTE Report on Sri Lanka Paramilitary Forces

LTTE Report on Sri Lanka Paramilitary Forces

Sunday Leader, 5 March 2006
[together with Sri Lanka's Admission]
 


 

The LTTE last week submitted a lengthy document to the government at the Geneva peace talks which contained evidence compiled by the organisation on paramilitaries. At the conclusion of the talks, the two sides released a joint statement that said "The Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE are committed to taking measures to ensure that there will be no intimidation, acts of violence, abductions or killings.

"The LTTE is committed to taking all necessary measures to ensure that there would be no acts of violence against the security forces and police. The Government of Sri Lanka is committed to taking all necessary measures in accordance with the Ceasefire Agreement to ensure that no armed group or person other than government security forces would carry arms or conduct armed operations."

Couched in diplomatic jargon, the statement is a clear commitment by the government to disarm para-militaries in accordance with Article 1.8 of the Ceasefire. And more importantly what the SLMM needs to look after. The document is titled "Sri Lanka Armed Forces and Paramilitaries," and details LTTE allegations of armed Tamil groups working in government held areas.

It said that the existence of paramilitaries was evident as early as January 2003, four months into peace talks. The Tigers allege that activity rose to alarming levels in 2005. "The existence of the paramilitaries and the GOSLís awareness of its existence are not hotly debated anymore. What remains to be proved is that the SL armed forces is a partner in crime with these paramilitaries," the Tiger document handed over to the government delegation said.

Overall Command Structure of Paramilitaries

Claim dismissed

However, the armed forces have rejected the claim. When members of the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation went missing in Welikanda the army said that it launched its own investigation to ascertain whether paramilitary groups operated in the areas. The Military Spokespersonís office said that it had not recovered any evidence to suggest there were paramilitaries in the area. The MOD said that it had searched some of the villages that have been mentioned as areas where the paramilitaries frequent and found no evidence.

"In the north-east, LTTE having emerged as the leader of the armed struggle has set up the de facto state at the time of the signing of the CFA in February 2002. Those forces that were fighting the LTTE have always courted the other armed groups as one of their arsenal in their fight against LTTE. Both the Indian government during the presence of Indian military in the north east and later the GOSL have supported and raised the other groups in the north east for the sole reason of having a force within the Tamil community to fight LTTE," the Tigers said.

Commenting on arguments that paramilitaries, specifically the Karuna faction came into existence after the CFA and would not fall within its purview, the LTTE said that according to the CFA, the armed forces should not allow armed paramilitaries to operate in areas under their control.

The LTTE quotes press reports in The Sunday Leader (March 20, 2005) where details of the presence of Karuna loyalists at Thiruchchenai were detailed.

It also quotes The Sunday Times Defence Correspondent, Iqbal Athas (December 25, 2005) which highlighted a letter written by outgoing SLMM Head Hagrup Haukland to the Government Peace Secretariat, that confirmed the presence of Karuna loyalists at Thiruchchenai. The letter said that SLMM monitors had visited Thiruchchenai and armed persons there had admitted that there were loyalists of Karuna on March 30, 2005.

The LTTE report also reproduced photographs released by the Karuna faction to websites where members of the group were seen in conversation with the former SLMM station head in Batticaloa, Steen Joregensen. All this however has been public knowledge well before the LTTE handed over its dossier to the government delegation.

The LTTE lists its own set of evidence, from incidents, phone numbers, to charts, personnel details and other details including bank accounts held by the Karuna group.

"On the strip of road that leads from the SLAF controlled area to LTTE managed area of Vakarai, there are two checkpoints. One is exactly at the exit point just before the no-manís land and the other few hundred metres into the SLAFs area. Paramilitaries are stationed at the inner checkpoint into the SLAFís area.

"There have been several attacks on LTTE members between these two checkpoints. When LTTE members enter the SLAFís area the SLAF personnel at the entry point will inform the paramilitaries at the inner checkpoint who will come forward and attack unarmed LTTE members between the two checkpoints.

"LTTE members have seen paramilitaries in SLAF uniform checking the IDs. These paramilitaries in SLAF uniform have even threatened the LTTE members for still being in the movement," one such incident related in the LTTE document said. The document also gave two bank accounts that it said were used by the Karuna group to deposit extorted money.

The LTTE also blamed the EPDP saying it was responsible for violence in Jaffna.

"During the 6-8 weeks of terror in Jaffna in December 2005-January 2006 period civilians in Jaffna have seen men in civilian clothes coming out of the Nelliady EPDP camp to join SLAFís patrol moving from the Nelliady SLAF camp. This corroborates with the statements of many families of victims who reported this to NESOHR. These families told NESOHR that the perpetrators were paramilitaries and the SLAFís working in collusion."

The LTTE has listed the paramilitaries working with armed forces as the Karuna group, EPDP, PLOTE and EPRLF Varathan group. It has listed names of cadres and who they report to be within the security forces.

The Tigers have also listed another group that they say is the Muslim Jihad group, active in Trincomalee. The weapons for this organisation is brought from Colombo in vehicles belonging to cabinet ministers, "it is alleged. "Training and weapons for the Jihad group are provided by the Sri Lankan military intelligence wing personnel, members of the Jihad group are mostly those who left the Sri Lanka military intelligence wing or those who ran away from the Sri Lanka military intelligence wing.

Details

In their report, the LTTE also provides maps of para-military camps and their close proximity to the armed forces camps.

Produced elsewhere on this page are also the charts in the LTTE report with details of the handlers of the paramilitary cadres.

The LTTE expects the government to disarm the para-military groups identified before the next round of talks in April, while the security forces denying the charges in the report is a clear indication nothing will change on the ground, be the charges true or false.

Contact Numbers of Karuna Group

 

Sri Lanka State Controlled Daily News: Yapa to act against Leader report, 9 March 2006

COLOMBO: Government Spokesman, Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa yesterday assured appropriate action regarding a news item titled 'The Tiger report on para militaries' published in the Sunday Leader of March 5, 2006. Responding to a statement made in Parliament by JVP MP Wimal Weerawansa, Yapa said the Government's attention has been drawn to this news item which could have serious repercussions on national security.

The Government is taking all possible steps to protect national security, he added.

A separate statement on this matter was earlier issued by the Information Department, he said.

The Government has drawn its attention to a news item published in a Sunday newspaper which could adversely impact national security and is taking all steps in this regard, Yapa told Parliament.

He said the Government has already issued a statement on the report titled the 'Tiger report on para militaries' published in a Sunday newspaper explaining its position.

In his statement, Weerawansa said the article, published in the Sunday Leader, is a direct betrayal of the country's national security. He said the report, based on submissions made by Anton Balasingham in Geneva, alleges that the Government has dealings with armed groups and also reveals a list of intelligence personnel.

Weerawansa said the newspaper implied that the Tiger allegations were correct. "We respect media freedom. But we should respect the country more. Does media freedom mean the right to wield the pen in a manner that betrays our security forces personnel?", he asked.

He questioned whether the newspaper assumed responsibility for the lives of the Security Forces personnel mentioned in the article.

Will they be able to work with any sense of safety, he asked.

Weerawansa recalled that this particular newspaper previously published a story to the effect that Karuna Group camps existed in Government controlled areas. The same newspaper published all details on Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar's private residence, following which the LTTE assassinated him.

Now they have published a list of intelligence personnel. What could happen next?

He noted that even the US has passed Legislation called the Patriots Act to safeguard national security. He also expressed concern on a report published in the Sunday Island of March 5, 2006 titled 'Oslo rules out red carpet for Thamilselvan et al'.

He said the article implied that Norway as treated the LTTE delegation as State visitors. He described this as an attempt by Norway to undermine Sri Lanka's sovereignty. Weerawansa said the time has come to end Norway's role as facilitator to the peace process in the face of such acts. Weerawansa yesterday hit out at the Sunday Leader publication accusing it of disclosing sensitive information which would undermine and jeopardise national security.

He noted that the Sunday Leader report on Page 12 of its March 5 edition headlined 'The Tiger Report on Paramilitaries' had published a list of names of members attached to the Intelligence Arm of the Security Forces. What is more, the source of information of the article was a document tabled at the Geneva conference by LTTE chief negotiator Anton Balasingham, he said.

He said the Sunday Leader report has to be described as nothing short of a betrayal of national security.

Weerawansa added: "This report has taken as its basis, a document placed at the Geneva talks tabled by Anton Balasingham who is said to be the theoretician of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

The newspaper by this report has given wide publicity to the effect that the Armed Forces of the Sri Lankan Government are acting in collusion with various 'Armed Groups'.

Along with it, the newspaper has published a list of names of the Members of the Intelligence of the Sri Lanka State Security Forces. It has further revealed the list of names of members of the 'Intelligence' who are claimed to have dealings with members of the Karuna group.

The report has also published a list of names of some EPDP members who operate within the parameters of democracy and is a constituent partner of the Government, exposed as members of the paramilitaries.

The newspaper had given publicity based on the contents found in a statement prepared by the Tiger Movement. Perusing through the report one will come to the conclusion that the newspaper had published the news item in `good faith' and that its contents were true.

Thus the so called Sunday Leader newspaper has tried to convince its limited readership the allegation brought against the Government by the Tiger Movement was correct.

In their attempt to make their conclusion firmly take root in the minds of the readers, the newspaper has stooped to the lowest possible level in disclosing the names of the security and intelligence unit operatives of the Sri Lanka Army.

Weerawansa asked: "Will this newspaper take the responsibility of the lives of the officers of the members of the Intelligence unit? Will these officers be able to carry on with their duties in safety after they had been exposed based either on true or false information?

They have been exposed and betrayed not only before the terrorists but also in their living environment. Who has the right to put these officers who dedicate their lives for the security of the State into this uneasy situation?

Will our society be trained to bear in patience in the name of the media freedom if these officers are assassinated?

We have not forgotten the sad experience of the expose of the Millennium City Housing Complex issue. That betrayal was done under the cover of media freedom. The end result was they became victims of terror attacks. Will the media that exposed those officers by publishing their photographs take responsibility?", he asked.

 

 

 

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