"A CIA regional analyst
in Washington said in July 2001: “containing the LTTE
while stepping up pressure on the civilian population
under its control by stepping up ‘terror’ bombing might
create conditions for unseating Prabhararan”. "
US Strategic Interests in Sri Lanka,
Taraki, 30 July 2005
“We have a very comprehensive relationship with Sri
Lanka. In our anxiety to protect the (Tamil) civilians, we should
not forget the strategic importance of this island to India's
interests,... especially in view of attempts by countries like
Pakistan and China to gain a strategic foothold in the island
Minister Pranab Mukherjee in Indian
Parliament October 2008
Comment by Nadesan
Satyendra , 20 January 2009 The question
is being asked by some: why is the international community which was
willing to arm Sri Lanka and to ban the LTTE, unwilling and/or
unable to prevent the genocide of Eelam Tamils?
Suffering is a great teacher and the Tamil people are being taught
that for the governments of the so called IC, human rights and
humanitarian law are but useful instruments to advance their
political and strategic interests. The Tamil people are being taught
that political power flows through the barrel of the gun. Whilst the goal of securing peace through
justice is loudly proclaimed by the international actors, real politick leads
them to deny the justice of the Tamil Eelam
struggle for freedom from alien Sinhala rule - justice which
presumably led the
State of Massachusetts to urge the US President in 1981 'to support
the struggle for freedom
by the Tamil nation for the
restoration and reconstitution the separate sovereign state
of Tamil Eelam and to
recognize publicly the
right of self determination
by the Tamil people of Tamil Eelam.'
It will not be a matter for
surprise if the US has found Sri Lanka's attempt to engage in a 'balance of
power' exercise of its own somewhat irritating - and has cautioned Sri Lanka
privately that Sri Lanka was not a super power and should not try to behave
like one. And threats of court actions against President Rajapaksa led by
personnel in US
based think tanks will help to pressure President Rajapaksa to fall
in line with US strategic interests in the Indian Ocean region. When
that is achieved, the threats of court action will also die a
natural death. Alternatively if President Rajapakse's internal left
of centre political constituency makes him unable to openly
play ball with the US, then other more acceptable Sinhala
leaders will be promoted to continue the rule of the Tamil people but not before the Rajapaksa coterie has been allowed to accomplish their
President Rajapaksa and those
in power in Sri Lanka are ofcourse not unaware of these
machinations. Hence the murder of Lasantha Wikremaratne, the
suppression of the media and all those forces who may be used by the
IC to promote an alternative Sinhala leadership to continue to
rule the Tamil people after the genocidal deed is done and
Tamil resistance annihilated. After
all, Sri Lanka's sixty year record of
ethnic cleansing of Tamils shows that
chauvinism and its assimilative agenda is not the special preserve of President Rajapaksa
And so the international
community will wait till Tamil resistance is sufficiently weakened
or annihilated before it attempts to intervene 'on
humanitarian grounds' and in seeming response to 'world wide Tamil appeals'.
Meanwhile the IC will even welcome such world wide appeals by Tamils
as that will pave the way (and establish useful contact points
amongst the Tamil diaspora) for IC's eventual intervention with
'development aid' with the mantra of not conflict resolution but
'conflict transformation'. Give them cake when they ask for freedom
from alien Sinhala rule. A conquered people should be grateful for
whatever they can get - though there may not be not
enough cake to go round.
The Tamil people are being
taught the truth of something which
Subhas Chandra Bose said many
years ago - Freedom is not given, it is taken. Stephen Covey was
right when he declared:
'Borrowing strength builds weakness. It builds
weakness in the borrower because it reinforces dependence on
external factors to get things done. It builds weakness in the
person forced to acquiesce, stunting the development of independent
reasoning, growth and internal discipline. And finally it builds
weakness in the relationship. Fear replaces cooperation, and both
people involved become more arbitrary and defensive... ' 'Thongura'
power is no power. It builds weakness, stunts independent growth and
replaces cooperation with fear.
And those who may be seduced by 'thongura power'
will find the words of
Sri Aurobindo helpful -
"Our appeal, the appeal of every high souled and self respecting nation, ought not to be
to the British sense of justice, but to our own reviving sense of manhood, to our own
sincere fellow feeling - so far as it can be called sincere - with the silent suffering
people of India. I am sure that eventually the nobler part of us will prevail, -
we no longer obey the dictates of a veiled self interest, but return to the profession of
a large and genuine patriotism, when we cease to hanker after the soiled crumbs which
England may cast to us from her table, then it will be to that sense of manhood, to that
sincere fellow feeling that we shall finally and forcibly appeal."
"The Sri Lankan army was responsible for a further atrocity yesterday as
it intensified its offensive against the remnants of the separatist
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). At least 49 people were killed
and more than 50 injured when a shell struck the only remaining hospital
in the so-called no-fire zone on the north east coast of the island...The
army’s attacks on hospitals and other civilian targets are not
accidents but part of a strategy of terrorising the population
inside the remaining LTTE territory. The aim is to stampede
civilians into leaving the area so that it can be turned into a
free fire zone... Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse has
rejected all calls for a ceasefire and responded to any
criticisms of the military’s actions with unconcealed contempt...The Rajapakse government, however, is secure in the knowledge that no
action will be taken through the UN. China, Russia, Japan and Vietnam
tacitly supported the Sri Lankan government and its war crimes by
blocking any formal discussion of the situation in the UN Security
Council on Monday. The US, France and Britain have been issuing
hypocritical expressions of concern about the humanitarian crisis, but
all these powers quietly backed Rajapakse’s decision to plunge the
country back to war in mid-2006. Their calls for a ceasefire are not
issued out of concern for the trapped civilians, but to shape the
outcome of the war in their own economic and strategic interests. All these powers bear their share of political responsibility for the
Sri Lankan government’s communal war and the war crimes being carried
UN Security Council has called upon the LTTE to 'allow
the tens of thousands of civilians still in the conflict
zone to leave'. If not for the humanitarian
tragedy faced by the people of Tamil Eelam caused by the
genocidal onslaught by Sinhala Sri
Lanka, the UN Security Council suggestion that but
for the LTTE, Tamil civilians would some how want
to voluntarily leave the conflict zone to go into barbed
wire concentration camps euphemistically called welfare
villages would be laughable... The UN Security Council
Press Statement (not Resolution) reflects the
horsedealing that went on before it and the real polick
nature of its deliberations behind the pretensions of
How many times can a man turn his head
And pretend that he just doesn't see
How many ears must one man have
Before he can hear people cry
How many years can some people exist
Before they're allowed to be free
The answer, my friend, is blowing in the wind
The answer is blowing in the wind
Channel 4 News reports from a camp in
the northern Sri Lankan city of Vavuniya, where Tamil
refugees have been taken. Shocking claims have emerged
of shortages of food and water, dead bodies left where
they have fallen, women separated from their families,
and even sexual abuse. This programme obtained the first
independently filmed pictures from the internment camps
set up by the Sri Lankan government to house Tamils who
have fled the country's civil war. There are at least a
hundred thousand Tamils from the country's north held in
these camps, and while the government insists their stay
there is temporary, aid workers say there is not as yet
a concrente plan for their resettlement into the
country's north.As access to the camps is prohibited to
journalists, unless they are under military escort,
independent information about conditions inside is hard
to come by. But Channel Four News managed to send a
cameraman into the camps who filmed, without army
escort, who filmed these scenes.
resumed bombing raids since 4th May, 2009. On 4th
coastal IDP settlements were attacked. Today several
bombs were dropped in the densely populated interior of
the coastal village. This has increased the deaths and
injuries manifold. This is an added atrocity apart from
mayhem caused by artillery and canon fire.
is widespread. People are not eating for
several days. The fainting incidents are common. Many
reach the stage of stupor. If not taken any action they
reach coma stage and die. No food items in the shops.
The land is barren. No eatable vegetation."
"..Within the northern and southern
sections of the Civilian Safe Zone (CSZ), there are new
indications of building destruction and damages
resulting from shelling and possible air strikes. This
analysis was conducted with a time series of very high
resolution satellite imagery from 5 February to 19 April
"..1. Putumattalan: Three permanent
buildings have been destroyed between 29 March and 19
April, bringing the total for the northern section of
the CSZ to six destroyed since 15 March. There are
potentially large amounts of moderate to severe damages
to the remaining permanent buildings in this area..."
"..Tamil IDPs inside the barbed-wire internment camps in
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) controlled Vavuniyaa are not only
medically underserved, but are subjected to degrading
interrogations .. Many are tortured or simply shot.
There are also reports of regular rapes."
The UN has issued a fresh appeal for a
humanitarian pause or lull in the fighting in Sri Lanka
to avoid a "bloodbath" on the beaches. It says such a
development in the north-eastern region "seems an
increasingly real possibility". The latest appeal comes
as aid agencies are expressing increasing concern over
the safety of more than 100,000 people caught up in the
fighting. On Wednesday, the International
Committee of the Red Cross said one of its staff working
in the war zone had been killed. The aid worker,
Sinnathurai Kugathasan, was hit by a shell while
The government has repeatedly rejected international calls for a ceasefire
saying this would only allow the rebels to regroup.
The military says it has now captured all rebel-held
territory in the north-east after days of intense
fighting and has now pushed them into a
government-designated "safe zone" set up to protect
civilians. The zone is estimated to be about 20 sq km
(12.4 miles) of the coastal area. A senior health
official in the conflict zone, Dr T Varatharaja, told
the BBC that more than 30 civilians had been killed in
the last 24 hours when shells landed inside the
designated no-fire zone. "
7 April 2009
The Sri Lankan Army using banned chemical weapons against
the Tamil people...
The UN says that it estimates that thousands of civilians have been
killed and wounded in the conflict in the north-east of Sri Lanka. The UN's US-based Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
(OCHA) says civilians continue to lose their lives within the war zone.
It says that they are also being killed in the no-fire area which has
been hit by artillery attacks. The government says the UN's figures are "irresponsible and
sensationalist". But UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has strongly
deplored the mounting civilian death toll - which he
said included children.."
"...At any time shell may fall amidst you and your family. With screeching sound
one sole shell will pass us and fall somewhere close by. It will fall with devastating effect. No one will
expect this treacherous shell. You will be sleeping in your shelter. You may be on the road buying something. Children
may be playing. Some may be having bath. That shell will fall among the crowded refugee population. Six or
seven will fall dead. Scores will get injured. From this first shell no one knows how to escape. Before second shell falls all
will be in the bunkers. Like parent rabbits and their kids scurrying to a hole when they saw a vulture
parents dragging and lifting their children and hurry into the bunkers. After that, about 10 – 15 shells will fall
in quick succession around the area. After that there will be a pause. They will come out and get into their
usual chores. Again in half or one hour’s time suddenly without any warning shells will start falling causing
casualties. This is the daily occurrence. It takes the toll of about 70 – 80 deaths and hundreds injured
everyday This has become a routine – a way of life. Horror filled atmosphere. Waiting in anticipation of death with
fear all over the body. Expecting the visit of Kaalan – god of time and death..."
"..Hospital: Hospital has become a hell. Mathalan GTMS has been converted into a
makeshift hospital. Every now and then the ambulances and TRO vehicles moving fast into the hospital
compound and would screech to a halt. Hospital staff, Red Cross and TRO volunteers would be always there to
receive the dead and wounded. The wounded would be immediately shifted from the vehicles as smoothly
as possible and placed on a big carpet under a tree. Health volunteers with the assistance of
doctors immediately would get into doing first aid and injecting saline. They would select the priority cases
to be treated at once. Some cases were there – they can not be treated. Doctors were sure that with surgical
items available here, medicines and expertise there was no hope and no chance for recovery. We saw a
case – a young boy who was still alive. We asked the doctor why he can not be treated. Doctor put his
whole finger into a hole on his head. He explained that a shell piece has penetrated through the scalp of
his head and gone deep into his brain and has damaged it seriously. Even a neuro surgeon in a best hospital in
the world can not cure him. How can we? We have to work without anesthesia and pethadin – drugs needed for
surgery and amputations. He would die in some minutes.” In another case a pregnant woman with three month baby inside her womb was lying
there - Her internal organs have been severely damaged – shell pieces have severed many vital parts
of her stomach and womb. Her both breasts have been severed. Blood was fast flowing like many
streams from the abdomen. There was no blood in the blood bank. She would die soon."
community will wait till Tamil resistance is sufficiently weakened
or annihilated before it attempts to intervene 'on
humanitarian grounds' and in seeming response to 'world wide Tamil appeals'.
Meanwhile the IC will even welcome such world wide appeals by Tamils
as that will pave the way (and establish useful contact points
amongst the Tamil diaspora) for IC's eventual intervention with
'development aid' with the mantra of not conflict resolution but
It was the Buddha who said
that suffering is a great teacher. The Tamil people are being taught on
the hard anvil of death and suffering appropriately enough in Buddhist Sri Lanka that human rights and humanitarian laws
are more often than not, political instruments - instruments which
selectively so that they may intervene to advance their own perceived strategic interests.
After all the simplest thing that the
international actors could have done to protect the Tamil people
would have been to remove the ban on the LTTE so that the capacity of the people
of Tamil Eelam to resist the
genocidal onslaught launched on them by Sinhala Sri Lanka may have
been strengthened. The simple and humane thing that the
international actors could have done was
not to taunt the struggles against terrorism with the label terrorism
but to adopt a
principle centered approach which liberated political language
and also helped to liberate
people who have
taken up arms as
a last resort in their
struggle for freedom from oppressive alien
1. Structured Humanitarian Work: After the population of
over 300,000 have movedinto villages such as Puthu Mathalan, Pokkanai, Valaiyarmadam
and Mullivaikal inMullaitivu district the health services divided these villages
into six zones. TRO too wentalong with this delineation of boundaries and hick started its
2. Provision of rice gruel: Famine is spreading fast with
the non arrival of enough fooditems from the South by WFP. For a month to feed the IDP
population the need is 695lorry loads - 6950 Metric Ton. 5100 MT Basic food items such as
rice, flour, dhal andvegetable oil. These basic items should be brought by WFP and to
be distributed as dryrations to IDPs. Supplementary food items - other items needed
for cooking amount to1850 MT. Totally 6950 MT. The need for a day in Vanni is 170 MT
– 17 lorry loads. Forthe month of February the amount of food items came to Vanni so
far is 50 MT – 5 lorryloads. This is not enough even for one day’s distribution.TRO has organized to open 6 gruel (Kanji) distribution centres
in six zones which wouldgive solace to the starving people. TRO is planning to open six
more as the demand isever increasing – altogether 12 centres for kanji distribution
with provision of milk (usingmilk powder packets) to infants.With the participation of other cooperative societies and
administrative service 18 morecentres - 3 for each of 6 centres will function for the same
purpose of providing kanji toall and milk to infants.
3. TRO has started
constructing 60 wells - 10 in each zone along the coastline. Theyare called ‘Kottu – Palmyra tree trunk wells’ – by digging sandy
soil and induct 2 or 3plastic barrels (if Palmyra tree trunk is not available) into
it. Already 40 wells have beenbuilt. TRO has come forward to build 300 more wells – additional
50 wells for each of 6zones. This should be completed before 8th
of March 2009.TRO has promised in the coordinating meeting to build 30 toilets
- 5 in each of 6 zones.These toilets will be built on the other side of the road
leading to shrubby forest lands.With the participation of Fishemen’s Cooperative Federations
additional 1000 toilets will be built in a short period of on coastline.
Tamils Against Genocide (TAG) has
evidence that 12 counts of the crime of genocide have
been committed against the indigenous civilian Tamil
population of Sri Lanka outside of any conceivable war
or conflict zone, for example, affecting temples,
churches, schools, and hospitals. TAG used the legal
services of Bruce Fein, Esq. 1 to produce a
3-volume 950+ page model
indictment which charges U.S. citizen and Sri Lankan
Defense Secretary, Gotabaya Rajapaksa, and U.S.
permanent resident and Commander of the Sri Lanka Army,
Lt. General Sarath Fonseka, with 12 counts of genocide,
and 106 counts of war crimes and torture, in violation
of U.S. domestic statutes 18 USC � 1091, 18 USC � 2441,
and 18 USC � 2340A.
TAG submitted the model
indictment to the U.S. Department of Justice on February
5, 2009 for the US Attorney General to initiate a grand
jury investigation aimed at filing a federal criminal
case in the U.S. District Court for the Central District
"It is with some hesitation that we publish
these photographs of Sri Lanka's Genocidal onslaught on the
people of Tamil Eelam - photographs which may offend the
sensibility of many. But the brutal nature of Sinhala Sri
Lanka's continuing genocidal onslaught on the people of Tamil
Eelam must be exposed.
Jean Paul Sartre was right
declared in 1967 that "against partisans
backed by the entire population, (occupying) colonial armies have
only one way of escaping from the harassment which demoralizes them.... This is to eliminate the civilian population. As it is the unity of
a whole people that is containing the conventional army, the only
anti-guerrilla strategy which will be effective is the destruction
of that people, in other words, the civilians, women and children..."
Each picture published here speaks a thousand words and exposes not only the
horrific war crimes committed by President Rajapaksa and the
forces under his command but taken together they also
reflect the political reality that it is the unity of the entire population of Tamil Eelam
in their struggle for freedom from alien Sinhala rule, that has led
the Sinhala regime to believe that the ' only anti-guerrilla
strategy which will be effective is the destruction of that
people, in other words, the civilians, women and children...'
President Rajapaksa and his ruling coterie may believe that they
are being effective but they have fanned the flames of an enduring
and deep rooted anger and resentment amongst more than 70 million Tamils
living in many lands. "
Sri Lanka is preparing to house 200,000
civil war refugees at five huge "welfare villages" -
complete with post offices, banks and libraries - where
it expects them to stay for up to three years, according
to a government plan.
The draft plan, which the government has circulated
among international aid groups and donors in recent
days, surfaced as tens of thousands of civilians fled
the northern battlefield where Tamil Tiger rebels and
government forces have been waging heavy battles.
The government's preparations appear to lend support to
Red Cross estimates last month that 250,000 civilians
were trapped in the war zone. The government says the
number is less than half that, giving a much less dire
assessment of the potential humanitarian crisis.
Aid workers and Western diplomats have expressed
concerns about the treatment of the ethnic Tamil
civilians in the camps and are worried the proposed plan
would keep the displaced from returning to their homes
while the military spends years searching the jungles
and villages for the last remnants of the Tamil rebels.
"It is with distress and concern that
TRO Headquarters – Vanni notes the departure of the
expatriate staff of the International Committee of the
Red Cross from the LTTE controlled Vanni.
The ICRC has been the only international organization
functioning in the Vanni for the past four months after
the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) ordered all of the
United Nations Agencies (UN) and international
Non-Governmental Organizations (iNGOs) out of the Vanni
on 15 September 2008.
The departure of the ICRC removes the last international
witness to the GoSL’s attacks on the over 300,000 Tamil
civilians in the Vanni. The ICRC has, in the past two
weeks alone, witnessed and reported to the international
community via press releases, several incidents of
bombing and shelling of hospitals, churches, temples and
internally displaced persons (IDP) camps by the Sri
Lanka Armed Forces which killed hundreds of civilians.
In the past two months alone, the GoSL’s shelling and
bombing has killed over 1000 civilians and more than
4000 have been seriously injured."
10 February 2009
Relentless shelling expels civilians from so called
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 10 February 2009, 05:56 GMT]
Thousands of civilians were seen
Monday fleeing in all directions from the 'safety zone'
as mortar, artillery and Multi Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL)
rockets hit the entire area demarcated by the Colombo
government as safety zone. At least 36 civilians were
killed and 76 wounded throughout the day in Va'l'lipunam,
Chuthanthirapuram and in Maaththa'lan. The entire
100-houses-scheme located in Chuthanthirapuram was
burning following MBRL attack with shells that caused
Civilians fleeing 'safety zone' further
into LTTE held areas
Many had fled the 100-houses-scheme
already and the remaining stayed inside the bunkers
throughout the barrage. The settlement, initially set up
for refugees from Mannaaar, is located on Udaiyaarkaddu
Chuthanthirapuram Road. Several thousand people were
fleeing safety zone further into LTTE controlled areas.
But, not all have fled the security zone as most of the
casualties were reported on the roads on Sunday.
Casualty figures from 100-houses-scheme was not known.
6 civilians were killed and 12 wounded when they were
fleeing Chuthanthirapuram and Theavipuram. 4 dead bodies
of civilians were brought to Chuthanthirapuram hospital.
At least 16 civilians were killed in Maaththa'lan and 49
were reportedly wounded. Five members of a single family
were among the victims, the reports said. 7
civilians, including 3 children, were rushed to hospital
with serious burn injuries following the artillery and
MBRL barrage. 3 more civilians were killed in Sri Lanka
Air Force (SLAF) attacks and 15 sustained injuries.
At least nine people were killed and
at least 20 others injured as a result of the first
three shellings. The hospital sustained direct hits
three times in less than eight hours: twice between 3
and 4 p.m. local time, then again at 10.20 p.m. local
time. On Monday evening at 6.40 p.m., the hospital was
hit a fourth time.
On Sunday the hospital's kitchen was hit first, then its
church and later a ward with women and children. On
Monday it was another ward. It is likely that there were
casualties outside the hospital, too, but we do not have
the exact figures yet. Despite the shelling, people
injured in the ongoing fighting continue to arrive at
When it was hit the third time, more than 800 people,
including 500 in-patients, were sheltering in the
Two other medical facilities in the Vanni region have
also been hit by shelling in recent weeks, and again
today. This is unacceptable. Wounded and sick people,
medical personnel and medical facilities are all
protected under international humanitarian law.
2 February 2009
Sri Lanka fires shells into civilian
refugee centres & hospitals TamilNet, Monday, 02 February 2009
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) fired artillery
shells throughout the whole day on Monday from all
directions into civilian refuges. At least one hundred
civilians could have been killed or maimed in the
indiscriminate barrage. The casualties are uncountable
as the whole population is forced to reside inside the
bunkers throughout the whole day, reports TamilNet
correspondent. “Monday was the worst day of SLA shelling
so far within the safety zone.”
More than 5,000 artillery shells and Multi Barrel Rocket
Launcher (MBRL) rockets have been fired by the SLA.
Both the hospitals at Puthukkudiyiruppu (PTK) and
Udaiyaarkaddu have been hit by the shelling also on
Thousands of shells have hit Theavipuram, Va’l'lipunam,
Chuthanthirapuram, Udaiyaarkaddu and Puthukkudiyiruppu.
2 February 2009
Sri Lanka Army shells PTK hospital, 9 killed, 15 wounded
[TamilNet, Monday, 02 February 2009, 02:14 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) shelled
Puthukkudiyiruppu (PTK) hospital Sunday night killing
nine civilians, including patients and their family
members in the ward. More than 15 civilians were
injured. The indiscriminate attack on the hospital has
caused panic and tension among the hundreds of wounded
civilians at the hospital. The shelling has come despite
repeated calls from the medical authorities not to fire
shells on the civilian medical facility and within a few
hours of a public statement from the ICRC, which said it
was shocked by the shelling on hospital twice in recent
days. Meanwhile, a source at Vavuniyaa District
Secretariat told TamilNet Monday that it was a
premeditated massacre as the military was given
instructions by the SL Defence Secretary Gotabhaya
Rajapaksa to isolate hospitals from civilian access by
"Three artillery barrages struck a
hospital in Sri Lanka’s chaotic war zone, slamming into
its pediatrics ward and its women’s wing and killing
nine patients," Associated Press report said quoting
Earlier, the Sri Lankan military commander of Vanni
SF-HQ had instructed the Government Agent of
Mullaiththeevu district to shift the hospital to safety
zone, giving an ultimatum to the officials. However, as
the attacks continued, the ICRC and UN officials had to
seek refuge at the hospital in PTK.
Puthukkudiyiruppu hospital has also been the place of
refuge for the ICRC officials and the UN staff.
Article 18 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states that
the civilian hospitals organized to give care to the
wounded and sick, the infirm and maternity cases, may in
no circumstances be the object of attack, but shall at
all times be respected and protected by the Parties to
Sri Lanka (Ceylon) is a signatory to the First, Second
and Third Geneva Conventions and it ratified the Fourth
Geneva Convention of 1949, by accession to it, on
1 February 2009
Shelling hits hospital for second time,
[TamilNet, Sunday, 01 February 2009, 19:39 GMT]
The International Committee of Red
Cross (ICRC), in a statement issued from Colombo Sunday
expressed shock at the shelling of Puthukkudiyiruppu
Hospital a second time in a week, and said "wounded and
sick people, medical personnel and medical facilities
are all protected by international humanitarian law.
Under no circumstance may they be directly attacked,"
pointing an accusing finger at the Government of Sri
Lanka and the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) without mentioning
either by name.
Full text of the news release follows:
Sri Lanka: Vanni hospital shelled
"We're shocked that the hospital was hit, and this for
the second time in recent weeks," said Paul Castella,
head of the Colombo delegation of the International
Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). "Wounded and sick
people, medical personnel and medical facilities are all
protected by international humanitarian law. Under no
circumstance may they be directly attacked."
The hospital currently has over 500 in-patients, some of
them still waiting to be transferred to the
government-controlled area for more adequate treatment.
Despite today's attack, people injured by the fighting
continue to arrive at the facility.
The ICRC has been supporting the hospital's staff by
setting up a makeshift structure for triage, receiving
ambulances, and helping to clean the facility. It has
also provided mattresses for patients who find
themselves in the corridors because there is no longer
any room in the wards.
"The staff are under acute stress, surrounded as they
are by the sound of the ongoing fighting and the influx
of new patients," said Morven Murchison-Lochrie, an ICRC
medical coordinator, who is present in the hospital.
"Ambulances are constantly arriving, but people are also
being brought in by wagon, pick-up truck, tractor and
even motor scooter." Despite this, she said, the staff
remained inventive and committed to caring for the
injured and sick who had made the dangerous trip to the
Appealing to those involved in the fighting, Mr Castella
said: ''The ICRC calls on both parties to respect their
obligation to spare medical facilities and activities,
as required by international humanitarian law in all
ICRC staff are present in the hospital and, together
with the Sri Lanka Red Cross Society, continue to
support the Ministry of Health staff caring for the
injured and sick there.
30 January 2009
M.I.A Tells of Sri Lanka Genocide to US
Grammy award nominee, Eezham born music phenom, Maya
Arulpragasam, in the PBS interview on Tavis Smiley show Thursday
told the U.S. listeners and fans worldwide that "there's been a
systematic genocide which has quiet thing because no one knows
where Sri Lanka is. And now it's just escalated to the point
there's 350,000 people who are stuck in a battle zone and can't
get out, and aid's banned and humanitarian organizations are
banned, journalists are banned from telling the story. "
29 January 2009
Artillery barrage kills 44 civilians, 178
wounded in 'safety zone'
[TamilNet, Thursday, 29 January 2009, 15:25 GMT]
Army (SLA) stepped up indiscriminate artillery barrage
towards the heart of 'safety zone' since Thursday noon
killing at least 44 civilians and causing injuries to 178,
initial reports from Vanni said. The shelling has targeted
Chuthanthirapuram 100-housing scheme, where at least 7
civilians were reported killed. 16 civilians were reportedly
killed and scores wounded near St. Antony's Church in
Chuthanthirapuram. At least 7 civilians were killed at
Iruddumadu, where the 'safety zone' begins.
"..Military spokesman Brig. Udaya Nanayakkara
said no civilians had been killed, though some forced to build
fortifications by the rebels - known formally as the Liberation
Tigers of Tamil Eelam - might have been wounded in crossfire.
"There were no civilians killed," he said. "We are targeting the
LTTE. We are not targeting any civilians so there can't be any
However an internal U.N. memo sent from the office in Colombo to
U.N. headquarters in New York said local workers and their
relatives - 95 civilians in all - came under repeated artillery
and machine gun fire as they sought refuge inside the government
declared "safe zone" for ethnic Tamil civilians inside rebel
The memo said the government ordered the group - which was stuck
in rebel-held territory because the Tamil Tigers would not give
them permission to leave - to relocate Saturday to the refuge.
They quickly established a new base there complete with bunkers,
but that evening, they were nearly hit by a shell..."
"Civilians who have been caught by the Sri
Lanka Army recently in Vadamaraadchi East in Jaffna and from
Murasumoaddai in Ki'linochchi district, who are confined to the
'detention camps' run by the Sri Lankan military, have
complained to their relatives that the Sri Lankan soldiers have
taken several women into their custody and were sexually abusing
them, said Jaffna district parliamentarian S. Gajendran on
Wednesday. Those who continue to justify and abet the on going
war against Tamils and those who directly or indirectly advocate
surrender of Tamil civilians to their adversaries are a party to
war crimes, he further said.
Stating that the relatives of victims in Sri Lankan custody in
Jaffna, Vavuniyaa and Mannaar have come with shocking stories of
sexual violence meted out to their relatives and family members,
the parliamentarian said there is a volume of allegations and a
long history of sexual abuse by the Sri Lankan military, which
consists of 99% ethnic Sinhalese.
Due to the long culture of impunity enjoyed by the Sinhala
dominated military, the families being held under a continuous
threat to their lives and honour in the Sri Lankan custody are
unable to come out and complain the most inhumane crime of war
that is taking place silently, charged the Jaffna district
parliamentarian of the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).
It is an inherent culture in the Sinhala army to use
the weapon of rape
.. It is not only rape, but the open
exhibition of Sinhala chauvinism’s insatiable desire to see
Tamils naked, whether man, woman, dead or alive that needs
attention of the civilized world, the MP commented. .."
"Sri Lankan soldiers have raped both women and young girls
on a massive scale, and often with impunity, since reporting often leads to
reprisals against the victims and their families.."
Organisation against Torture
"The Sri Lankan security forces are using systematic
rape and murder of Tamil women to subjugate the Tamil population...
Impunity continues to reign as rape is used as a weapon of war in Sri
Asian Human Rights Commission
Over the last 24 hours over 300 civilians who
were awaiting relief and medical assistance within the “Safety
Zone” declared by the Government of Sri Lanka have been killed
and several thousand injuredin Udaiyaarkaddu, Suthanthirapuram,
and Vallipuram in the Mullaitivu District by Sri Lanka Army
multi-barrel artillery and mortar shelling by the Sri Lanka
"In a scene of carnage of untold proportion on
civilian targets hit by hundreds of Sri Lanka Army fired
artillery shells, more than 300 people have died and several
hundreds are bleeding to death within the last 24 hours, amidst
pouring rain inside the 'saftey zone' declared by the Colombo
government. Houses and vehicles burn for a stretch of three km
between Va’l’lipunam Kaa’li temple and Moongkilaa’ru towards
Paranthan road, reports from Vanni said on Monday. Unattended
bodies and injured people unable to move are lying around
everywhere, while a remaining doctor fled and helpless ICRC
officials virtually cried at the scene from their bunkers,
TamilNet correspondent said.
Nearly 400,000 people have been told by the army to confine
themselves to a stretch of 30 square km. A part of this terrain
is marsh and jungle. People have flocked themselves in the
remaining patches of coconut groves and they stay there without
any amenities or food and with the risk of being attacked even
in the ‘safety zone’.
There is only one road in the locality, which is choked by
fleeing people. Even this road is targeted by barrage of shells
and people have died. The shelling prevents even people from
The exact number of people died could be more, as it is not
possible to take a count in the other places.
Those who are injured are sure to die, as the remaining two
hospitals, which were functioning at Udaiyaarkaddu and
Va'l'lipunam (Mullaiththeevu hospital), are defunct now.
The injured, if cannot move on their own, are left unattended to
bleed to death.
The fleeing people, including infants had nothing to eat, mother
of a three months old child, S. Thayalini, told TamilNet
"It is not merely a humanitarian crisis, but a shame on human
civilization. What a world, watching and abetting the whole
thing, having no conscience, said K. Kamalanthan," a social
activist who talked to TamilNet while fleeing Udaiyaarkaddu.
In the mean time, Indian and International News Agencies
operating from Colombo publish no accounts of the mass genocide,
taking place in Vanni. They continue to eulogize Colombo’s
military victories, painting a picture of LTTE ‘terrorists’
using civilians as human shield.
These news agencies, which had no guts of finding out what is
happening on their own, are spinning stories for the government
and are a shame to the profession of journalism and to the
Information Age. They cannot deny their role of being a party to
the war crime, said a Tamil journalist among the IDPs.
25 January 2009
URGENT APPEAL from the civilians in the Vanni to:
The Government of India, President Obama, Secretary General Ban
Ki-moon, and the international community
TRO is making an urgent appeal to The Government of India,
President-Elect Obama, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, and the
international community to appeal to the Government of Sri Lanka
(GoSL) to cease attacks on civilian targets; allow unfettered
humanitarian access to the Vanni by the UN and international
NGOs; and to allow all necessary essential humanitarian
assistance into the area.
The Sri Lanka Armed Forces continue to bomb and shell civilian
areas including: internally displaced person camps, hospitals,
churches, temples, and school while the international community
remains silent. These attacks have caused the deaths of over 50
civilians in the past month injuries to hundreds.
The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) also restricts and bans the
transportation of essential humanitarian emergency relief to the
350,000 displaced persons in the Vanni. Currently there is not
sufficient food, medicine, shelter, fuel, water & sanitation and
educational materials to meet the bare requirements of these
Displacement continues from areas south of Mullaitivu and East
of Kilinochchi due to ongoing military offensives by the Sri
Lankan Armed Forces. These displaced include internally
displaced persons (IDPs) who have been displaced from other
parts of the Vanni, some up to ten times and new IDPs who had
been living in the villages where fighting is taking place. The
population of the Vanni is approximately 450,000 persons.
Currently, 350,000 of these persons are displaced.
TRO requests that the Government of India, President-Elect
Obama, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the International
Community pressure the Government of Sri Lanka to:
1.Cease all bombing and shelling of civilians and civilian
institutions such as hospitals, schools, temples, churches and
civil administration buildings;
2.Declare, in consultation with the LTTE and the ICRC, safe
zones/havens for IDPs and other civilians;
3.Allow UN & international NGOs to enter the Vanni and remain
there to assist civilian IDPs;
4.Open the border checkpoints so that ambulances can transport
the severely wounded civilians to hospitals;
5.Allow the unfettered transportation of humanitarian relief to
the Vanni. This includes: food, medicine, shelter materials
(tents, tarpaulins, etc), fuel, and other essential items.
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has continued artillery
shelling on densely populated 'safety zone,' in
Chuthanthirapuram, Udaiyaarkaddu and Thearaavil in Visuvamadu
throughout Sunday, at least twice attacking the vicinity of the
supply centre, located at Chuthanthirapuram playground, the only
centre in Vanni where humanitarian supplies brought in by the UN
World Food Programme are distributed. Two shells exploded in the
premises, killing five members of a single family of Mr.
Jegatheeswaran, owner of a saloon displaced from Visuvamadu.
Five more civilians, including children and women, were also
killed. Body parts were scattered across the locality and not
all of them could be identified, according to medical sources.
At least 13 civilians were wounded at the site.
At least 22 civilians have been killed in various localities
inside the 'safety zone' throughout Sunday. More than 60
civilians, including children and women, have been wounded in a
number of artillery attacks from 2:45 a.m. till 9:15 p.m.
Sunday, according to TamilNet correspondent in Vanni.
Heavy fighting was heard throughout Saturday night at distance
in Mullaiththeevu town, which has been vacated by civilians.
But, without any provocation from densely populated civilian
areas, the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) stepped up shelling on
Chuthanthirapuram playground, where WFP humanitarian supplies
are stockpiled for distribution to the civilian population.
Officials responsible for food distribution were stationed at
the centre and their vehicles were also parked in the
As this report was being filed, a fresh attack was reported
Sunday evening around 9:15 p.m. in front of the food supply
centre where a Pi'l'laiyaar temple is located. Artillery shells
exploded in the environs of the temple. At least 25 civilians
were wounded and civilian volunteers were struggling to
transport the wounded to hospital. It was not possible to gather
a clear picture of the total casualties in the latest barrage.
Earlier in the day, 3 civilians were killed at Thirukkangkaadu
near Thearaavil in Visuvamadu. 9 civilians were wounded.
Artillery shells exploded inside the 100-houses-scheme
settlement at the centre of Chunthanthirapuram. 6 civilians were
killed and 12 wounded in the colony Sunday noon.
The breakdown of the remaining casualties was not known.
"The message the Sri Lankan forces were passing to the civilians
of Vanni, by repeated and unprovoked attacks, is that they
should subjugate themselves by walking into the territories in
the hands of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA)," commented the TamilNet
correspondent. " People are not prepared to surrender
themselves. They seem very concerned of the future course of the
struggle and were concerned of their sons and daughters."
"The Sri Lankan military is testing the breaking point of the
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) continued artillery
shelling on Udaiyaarkaddu on Saturday killing at least 7
civilians. At least 87 civilians have been wounded in the
indiscriminate shelling up to 5:25 p.m. Shells exploded inside
the hospital premises of Udaiyaarkaddu. At least 60 shells
exploded behind the hospital premises (Udaiyaarkaddu school)
around 3:45 p.m. Four civilians were killed on the spot.
Vehicles were seen on fire at Udaiyaarkaddu junction. Medical
authorities said the hospitals were struggling to cope with a
high number of civilian casualties.
Five civilians, including a10-year-old girl
and a 56-year-old Saiva priest, were killed and 83 civilians
wounded Friday when Sri Lanka Army (SLA) fired artillery shells
targeted 'safe zone' areas such as Iruddumadu in Udaiyaarkaddu
and Va'l'lipunam in Mullaiththeevu district at least four times,
according to medical sources in the region. More than 20 of the
wounded people were children. More than 20 of the wounded
victims are children.
The shelling and Multi-Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) rocket fire
targeted the villages Thearaavil, Mayilvaakanapuram, Iruddumadu,
Va'l'lipunam and Theavipuram at 10:45 a.m., 11:00 a.m., around
2:30 p.m., and 6:00 p.m.
A 10-year-old girl was killed Thursday night around 11:00 p.m.
at Moongkilaa'ru where Ki'linochchi district Government Agent's
office is situated.
A Saiva priest, identified as Sivam kurukkal, was killed at
Mayilvaakanapuram at 6:00 a.m. Friday.
Two dead bodies of civilians, killed in Va'l'lipunam and
Theavipuram, were taken to Putukkudiyiruppu (PTK) hospital
mortuary. One of the slain victims was identified as
An elderly man was killed and 34 civilians were wounded in the
shelling at Iruddumadu around 10:45 a.m.
SLA launched artillery fire Friday around 6:00 a.m on the IDP
settlement in Mayilvaakanapuram killing a Saiva priest, Sivam
Kurukkal, 56 and seriously injuring four including the priest’s
son, Kukaran, 17.
The three others injured are Lembert, 46, R. Ravichandran, 46
and Mariyamma, 36. The injured are admitted to Mallaavi hospital
displaced to Moongkilaa’ru due to SLA shelling.
Village Officer P. Sabaratnam, 48, Ketheeswaran, 51, A. Prasath,
14, K. Thevi, 50, Isayarasi, 11 Isaivaa’ni, 10 and Isaiyarasan,
7, were seriously injured in the above shelling.
SLA shelled the IDPs in the ‘safety zone’ declared by the
government Friday at 10:45 a.m and again at 11:00 a.m killing an
elderly person and seriously injuring 34 IDPs.
The seriously injured IDPs are Pushpavathy, 65, Perumal Kurukkal,
71, K. Kowsitha, 20, K. Balabaskaran, 42, Kangampikai, 30,
Vijay, 12, Visihithira, 10, Vithusan, 04, T. Piriyarasa, 30, S.
Vikinarasa, 52, V. Senamitha, 17, Kowthami, 17, Kamalampikai,
45, Yarlnilavan, 09, Laxsumy, 60, Neyanathan, 24, Kiri, 35,
Vadivalakan, 21, Mathivanan, 28, Thayalini, 19, Pushpathevi, 65,
Yogalingam, 42, Uthamani, 50, Yarlinpan, 19, Kiritharan, 26,
Yarlanpan, 26, Latheepan, 20, Sathiyasoroopan, 29, Eelavan, 19,
Kiruban, 12, Mathiyalakan, 22, Thambirasa, 30, Piratheepan, 23
and Alexan, 13.
Two IDPs were killed Friday in the SLA artillery fire on the IDP
settlements in Va’lipunam and Theavipuram areas. One of the two
killed was identified as Thuraisingam Paranthaman and the other
is not identified.
The IDPs injured in the above shelling are Veerabahu
Kanapathipillai, 72, Nakuleswaran Jeyakumari, 40, Baskaran
Shanthakumari, 40, Veeratheeran Thanusalini, 03, Asaipillai
Deluxi, 11, R. Pirabathevi, 50, V. Pirasath, 16, Nirusan, 12,
Arunthathi, 42, Anusa, 03, Jeyakumari, 40, Thanabalan, 32, P.
Shanthakumari, 37, T. Sobana, 28, T. Thamilventhan, 24, K.
Jeyakumari, 30, P. Rathi, 42, Jenifet, 32, S. Selvaroopan, 28,
K. Jegatheeswaran, 42, Nadarasa Narenthiran, 22, Jeganathan
Sarswathy, 47, Paramalingam Losini, 40, Kanagalingam Mathusa,
14, Nallathamby Parameswaran, 30, A. Sasikumar, 30, Nitharsan,
19, K. Visuvalingam, 52, Nagalingam Nadarasa, 56, Nadarasa
Nagendran, 22, Nallamma, 71, Ulageswari, 50 and P. Kularany, 50.
The two IDPs injured in the SLA shelling Friday around 6:00 p.m
in Udayaarkaddu are Panugopan, 21 and Rajeev Thamilini, 23.
The roads of Va'l'lipunam and Theavipuram are
full of blood and dead bodies are spotted all over the places in
the area that has come under attack by the Sri Lanka Army (SLA)
artillery and Multi-Barrel Rocket Launcher (MBRL) fire. The
carnage worsened after the SLA declared the area as "safe
haven". On Tuesday, 16 civilians were killed, 20 reported killed
Wednesday and around 30 civilians within the past 12 hours of
Thursday, according to Regional Director of Health Service (RDHS)
for Mullaiththeevu district. Dr.T.Varatharajah.
Many more are feared dead and wounded in the indiscriminate
bombardment which has been stepped up on densely populated IDP
areas within the secure zone. Meanwhile medical staff at the
hospital said there were more than 200 wounded within the last 3
22 January 2009
TRO Interviews victims after children's home
shelling by Sri Lanka
The Iniya Valvu Illam is a children's home for
the vision, hearing and/or speech impaired in Vallipuram,
Mullaitivu. The children's home is registered with the Govt of
Sri Lanka. On 22 Jan 2009 the Sri Lanka Army shelled this
childrens home injuring 6 people. ICRC had informed the Govt of
SL of the GPS location of this children's home.
The Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and the surgical
site of the Mullaiththeevu hospital, functioning as a makeshift
hospital at Va'l'lipunam school, were damaged in Sri Lanka Army
(SLA) artillery fire Wednesday night and Thursday around 12:20
p.m., after the Sri Lankan government declared that the area
where the hospital is situated is a "secure zone", medical
authorities at the hospital said Thursday. Five civilians were
killed within the hospital premises Thursday, according to Dr.
T. Varatharajah, the Regional Director of Health Services
(RDHS). The RDHS confirmed that the ICRC had verified that the
Sri Lankan military had received the GPS coordinates of the
hospital and said he was in constant touch with the ICRC,
located just 1 km away from the hospital.
Meanwhile, TamilNet correspondent who visited the hospital after
the attack, witnessing the situation said that the medical
facility which was serving scores of wounded civilians was
rendered completely out of function following the attack and
that he witnessed one of the worst inhuman scenes at the 'Peace
Village,' which has been the village of one of the most cruel
civilian casualties of Sri Lanka's so-called 'War on Terrorism'.
The hospital resumed its activities as ICRC visited the site
The RDHS confirmed to TamilNet that two shells exploded inside
the hostel of the hospital at 12:20 p.m. The ICU and Surgical
Units were attacked Wednesday night, he said.
There are several dead bodies on the sides of the road and under
the trees of the hospital, TamilNet correspondent said. All the
medical staff and the patients who managed to move themselves
sought refuge in the bunkers and continued to remain there as
Despite repeated calls from the medical authorities, placed
through the ICRC, there has been no improvement in Sri Lankan
forces conduct on attacks against the hospital in recent months.
Article 18 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states that the
civilian hospitals organized to give care to the wounded and
sick, the infirm and maternity cases, may in no circumstances be
the object of attack, but shall at all times be respected and
protected by the Parties to the conflict.
" Narrow roads. Labyrinth of death. Broken vehicles parked by roadside made the
roads more narrow. According to practical regulations imposed by local authorities for managing emergency situation only one row of vehicles can go upward while
downward another row of vehicle can come in. Two rows up and down can move simultaneously with great difficult of maneuvering. It normally works well. But when a vehicle
is broken in the middle of the road – even when it is parked sideway mayhem erupts. Two
vehicles can’t pass at the same time. Thousands of vehicles – lorries, canters, tractors
with trailers, land masters, motor bikes and cycles with hundreds of thousands of people moving
both ways get stuck into the long lasting standstill. No move. The fear of shell
attack on the roads – crowded by fleeing thousands of IDPs make more of them to move into that quagmire.
It happens many times in a day. To dismantle each knot of standstill it takes
many hours. While this hectic hour prolongs endlessly without any warning a shell fell in
the midst of the pool of people and vehicles. A tractor was burning along with the driver.
Following that a cluster of bombs fell with nasty destruction effect with the sound of
thunder and lightening.
The people were lying down cover. The spot when the shell fell was strewn with
blood, bones and flesh. At that time a whole family of 2 children, father and mother
were wiped out. They could not be identified immediately. No body was in full shape. All
parts have to be swept into a big heap. Then the injured were crying and howling with pain
for help. Blood was everywhere – on the ground and all over the bodies of the injured. A
woman was calling hoarsely for help. Her both legs were dangling from her hip –
pouring blood profusely onto the ground making the earth bloody red..."
Fifteen civilians including 5 children were
killed and 29 seriously injured in the relentless artillery
barrage that Sri Lanka Amy (SLA) kept pounding the internally
displaced persons (IDPs) in Visuvamadu, Udaiyaarkaddu,
Chuthanthirapuram and Maa'nikkapuram areas in Mullaiththeevu
district Tuesday, sources in Vanni said. SLA continued its
artillery barrage on the IDP settlements Monday from 11:00 a.m
till 12:30 p.m in Chuthanthirapuram and Theavipuram areas in
Vanni killing two IDPs and seriously injuring nine including
SLA targeted the IDP settlements behind the Pi'l'layaar Koayil
in Chuthanthirapuram junction Tuesday around 1:45 p.m, killing
two including a boy.
Two civilians killed were identified as 12-year-old Alagan
Pirasanthan and Manickavasagar Sivayogam.
A girl and a youth were blown to pieces while 29 persons
including children were seriously injured in the SLA artillery
shelling on the IDP settlements in Kuravil area in Udaiyaarkaddu.
The seriously injured IDPs are: Mariyathas, 52, Akamathi, 11,
Manonmani, 68, Kavitha, 30, Jeyarooban, 14, Anbarasan, 07,
Kirubakaran, 18, Pathmanathan, 44, Raveenthiran, 36, Kalyani,
34, Ravichelvan, 33, Arulanantham, 53, Kankamma, 63,
Ravichandran, 39, Paramalingam, 40, Vaksala, 17, Chandiraraj,
14, Sasitharan, 30, Thineshkumar, 30, Rathinakumar, 28, Y.
Suresh, 32, S. Rejitha, 15 and Niroshini, 37, Lyon, 47,
Sivakumar Ratha, 36, Seeralakan, 23, S. Pirabu, 32, I. Nagarasa,
50, I. Sutharsini, 52 and S. Kalyani.
SLA shelled Tuesday around 4:45 p.m the IDP settlements in
Chuthanthirapuram East killing 11 innocent civilians including 3
Sinnathurai Mathanakumar, 33 is one of the three killed and
others whose bodies brought to Udaiyaarkaddu, Naddaangka’ndal
medical clinic remain unidentified.
Some of those killed are persons belonging to one family.
Nine IDPs seriously injured in the above shelling are, Kannan,
25, Karuna, 38, Kugathas, 30, Saithanya, 18, Thevan, 22,
Vasantha, 42, Kanesan, 36, Velautham, 52, Yogalingan, 46.
Meanwhile, an IDP from Maa’raailuppai was killed in the SLA
shelling on Theavipuram Tuesday while 10 were seriously injured.
Kaathi Shanmugasuntharam is the person killed and the 10
seriously injured are, K. Ravi, 36, M. Kalaichelvan, 31, R.
Sulakshan, 07, Kanagalingam, 55, Vekavanam, 25, Jeyaratnaa, 11,
Anbarasan, 07, Thangaiah, 57, Mahinthan, 29, Nagarasa, 39.
The above are admitted to Mullaiththeevu Public Hospital
functioning in Va’l’lipunam.
The IDPs on the run lack food, drinking water and medicine as
these essential items have become scarce in Vanni.
The two killed in Theavipuram Monday are V. Kirupakaran, 40,
displaced from 7, Old Colony in Maangku’lam and Nanthakumar, 30,
displaced from Madduvil.
The seriously injured in Theavipuram are K. Chanthirasekaran,
38, A. Saraswathy, 59 and Vekananthan, 35.
The IDPs who sustained serious injury in Chuthanthirapuram are
R. Thurairasa, 75, M. Sivakamy, 55, Chudaravan, 04, Kanimozhi,
08, Chinthuja, 07 and Ponnambalam, 74.
The bodies of three IDPs killed in the SLA shelling earlier in
Visuvamadu area are kept in Ki’linochchi hospital which is now
displaced to Visuvamadu due to relentless SLA shelling.
Two of the bodies were identified as of Sri Pathmanathan
Subakaran displaced from Aananthapuram in Ki’linochchi and
Arunasalam Kanapathipillai, 72, displaced from Uruththirapuram.
The third body is of an elderly person around 60 years of age.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) fighter jets bombed
Chuthanthirapuram area Monday around 12:30 p.m while SLA shelled
the IDP settlement again around 3:00 p.m Monday.
"The Government of Sri Lanka’s land, air, and naval military operations over
the past year have created a humanitarian crisis unprecedented in the history of the 25-year conflict. This
crisis has gone largely unreported in the international media due to the fact that the government has banned the
media from the Vanni (LTTE controlled area) and ordered the United Nations (UN) and international NGOs out
of the area in September 2008. This military offensive has resulted in over 362,000 internally displaced
persons (IDPs). Some of these civilians have been displaced repeatedly, some up to 10 times.
In 2008 the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) unilaterally withdrew from the Cease
Fire Agreement that it had entered into with the LTTE in 2002, and embarked upon the current military
offensive. It is the civilians who have been most severely affected by this return to war.
In the Vanni alone thus far, the bombing and shelling by the GoSL military
forces over the past year has killed 352 civilians. Most of these civilians have been babies, young children, school
students and women. Overall, 2632 civilians have been confirmed killed and more than 6700 injured
over the past 2 years in the NorthEast as a result of military actions by the GoSL. Additionally, over 6,000
people have been disappeared or extra-judicially killed by GoSL forces or paramilitaries affiliated to the
Catholic priests and other religious leaders
in an urgent letter
appealed to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, to "take
immediate steps to stop the senseless war and put an end to the
untold sufferings of the innocent civilians," and said that the
"root of the on going war is the Structural Injustice, a
vehement denial of equality and dignity of the Sri Lanka
"Displacements continue unabated as a result of aggressive
artillery poundings and aerial bombardments in and around
civilian settlements," and nearly half a million people are
forced to live in Mullaitivu district alone, the letter said.
"Even schools, hospitals, places of worship, civilian
settlements etc., the security and safety of which are
guaranteed in the Geneva Convention on the Conduct of War, are
not spared in this aggressive war," the letter said.
With shrinking geographical territory "it is becoming almost
impossible for the people even to move towards "safer" areas,
away from the battle fields. A great human tragedy has exploded
in Wanni. Such a gruesome experience is unprecedented in the
recent history of these people," the Priests said in the letter.
The Priests urged the Secretary General to "kindly take the
necessary steps to bring the parties to the conflict to the
negotiating table in order to find a humane and just and lasting
political solution to the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka."
Jaffna Bishop Rt. Rev. Thomas Saundaranayagam
has urged the Sri Lankan President and Commander-in-Chief of the
Lankan armed forces to stop all shelling and aerial bombings at
civilian places in Vanni, in an urgent letter sent to President
Mahinda Rajapaksa Monday, before the latest mass exodus towards
Puthukkudiyiruppu. "It is the duty of the Government to open a
safe corridor for the safety of the civilians. Please stop all
shelling and aerial bombings at civilian places," the Bishop
said in his letter titled "Humble but urgent request to stop
shelling on civilian places in Vanni."
Owing to the ongoing shelling and aerial bombings by the Sri
Lankan forces on civilians who have taken refuge on the
Paranthan Mullaiththeevu A35 Road, the people are getting killed
and many sustain injuries daily, the Bishop said in his letter
to Mahinda Rajapaksa.
The displaced innocent people are in terrible plight, the Bishop
said and noted that he had urged the people to gather in the
churches and temples. The preists are also with the people, he
said. "Churches and temples are traditionally places of refuge
in time of danger in our country," the letter said. However, the
situation has worsened to deadlier scales within the last three
days, after the letter from the Bishop. The scale of
displacement is such that all the civilians could not be
accommodated only in churches and temples. The whole area is
full of displaced civilians, according to latest reports.
There are also reports of artillery shells exploding inside the
premises of Athisaya Vinaayakar temple in Visuvamadu. Earlier,
Colombo had announced the whole area as a secure zone, but later
intensified attacks inside the region, also dropping cluster
bombs on civilian settlements.
Indiscriminate artillery, multi-barrel and
mortar fire by the Sri Lanka Army from all the corners of
shrinking territory centering Puthukkudiyiruppu town, its
suburbs and adjoining jungles in the Mullaiththeevu district,
which is overcrowded with civilians, has worsened the
humanitarian tragedy that has been unfolding in Vanni during the
last 4 days. There are deaths and injuries caused to the
civilians fleeing the onslaught of the SLA. Medical authorities
said the situation was beyond control Friday noon and the
hospitals have come under attack and ambulances were not
operating. Access route from Vadamaraadchi East has been cut off
by the SLA that has entered Chu'ndikku'lam area.
Mullaiththeevu Puthukkudiyiruppu land route also remained
blocked due to indiscriminate mortar attacks. The entire area
with civilians has come under artillery range. Gunfire was heard
in all the directions.
Unless the shelling is stopped, every shell being fired into the
overcrowded area would cause civilian casualties. The fate of
the patients and staff at Kallaa'ru hospital is not known.
The access route for civilians to cross over into Vanni mainland
from Vadamaraadchi East has been blocked by the SLA, according
to initial reports.
Medical personnel at the hospital in Visuvamadu said the
situation was pathetic as SLA-fired shells were exploding in the
close vicinity. SLA shelling has targeted Vallipunam,
There are reports of civilian deaths and casualties in
Visuvamadu town being vacated by the civilians. Multi-Barrel
Rocket Launcher (MBRL) attacks targeted Athisaya Vinayakar
temple area in Visuvamadu, causing panic among the fleeing
civilians. Detailed reporting and verification of
casualties have become difficult under the prevailing
"All cases of deaths and injuries caused by
bombing and shelling in Vanni are taken to either Kilinochchi or
Mullaithivu hospitals. Both districts have a
Regional Director of Health Services (RDHS) under whose
supervision the government hospitals in that district function.
Many of these hospitals are
presently functioning in displaced locations. All the
information provided in this report is obtained through the
above mentioned hospitals and in some
cases the homes of the victims are visited to obtain further
details. If anyone wishes to confirm the reports of incidents
noted in this report they can contact
the respective Regional Director of Head Services (RDHS) by the
phone number provided below."
"..There have been no reports of fighting in
densely populated areas. However, the SLA has been continuing
artillery attacks and gunfire. The adjoining areas of makeshift
hospitals in Visuvamadu and Puthukkudiyiruppu hospital have also
come under artillery fire by the SLA, which is driving civilians
away from Tharmapuram and Vaddakkachchi by intensifying
Meanwhile, hospital authorities in an urgent appeal issued
Tuesday afternoon have urged the ICRC to at least take efforts
to safeguard the hospital premises from the Sri Lankan shelling.
28 civilians have been killed from within the 13
days from 01 January and 185 wounded. Blood was not available at
Puthukkudiyiruppu and makeshift hospitals.
As hospitals were displacing to relatively safer
areas, there are more wounded from all corners being rushed to the
makeshift hospitals functioning in schools and under trees.
Puthukkudiyiruppu Road was fully busy with displacing civilians."
"53,273 families have been displaced in Mullaitvu District. In that 35,268
are receiving WFP dry rations. For the month of November only 11.5 days of dry
rations have been provided to the above number of IDPs by WFP convoys. In the
month of December, as there was no stock in hand first week dry ration was not
distributed. Only the second week quota was given. Third week has come. But
so far food convoy has not come. As on 15th December our stock in our hand is
341 Kg. rice, 3124 kg of flour, 16,458.32 kg of dhal, 12,187.04 kg of sugar
and 437.09 kg ofc vegetable oil. People are facing severe hardships with out
food while there is heavy rain and there are no work opportunities. Every month
in 202 lorries with 2021 metric ton food items should come in the WFP
convoys. For a week 473 metric ton food in 48 lorries should come, according
to GA’s office of Mullaitivu."
Aftermath of SL Air Force bombing
of Kalaru IDP Camp -
"Between 1:30 and 1:55 am on Saturday
29 November 2008 the TRO Kallaru Internally Displaced
Persons (IDP) Camp (also called: Tharumapuram Kallaru
Ranimayanathan Scheme or Ulavanoor Kudiyiruppu
settlement) was bombed by the Sri Lanka Air Force
(SLAF). The SLAF dropped 16 Russian made cluster bombs
killing two civilians (a 5 year old child and an 80 year
old man) and injuring 19 others (10 children were among
the injured). A 77-year-old woman lost her left arm and
a 39-year-old man lost his left leg.
The Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) ordered departure of
the UN and international NGOs from the Vanni on 15
September 2008 has removed the independent,
international witness to attacks such as these against
civilians. TRO appeals to the international community
and the Tamil Diaspora to pressure the GoSL to allow the
UN and international NGOs to return to the Vanni on a
permanent basis so that they may provide humanitarian
assistance to the 300,000 IDPs, conduct needs
assessments, and serve as a witness to the sufferings of
and attacks on Tamil civilians."
There were five major bombing and shelling
attacks on civilians in Vanni during November 2008 and also one
on 1 December. All five attacks caused large number of injuries
among children and caused two child deaths. In total there were
three civilian deaths in these attacks and a total 26 civilians
were injured, including nine children. A claymore attack also
took the lives of three civilians including that of a child.
Details of these six attacks are described in this report. There
were several other injuries and destruction caused by artillery
with Russian markings dropped on 29 November that did not explode is pictured
above. Other pieces of the unexploded bombs are also shown below.
Note that the left picture appears to be a parachute. These bombs are considered to be of the type cluster bomb which contain several smaller bombs inside and
cause damage to wide area thus often having disastrous effects on
civilian population. For this reason there is currently an international
push to ban this type of bomb. Several countries have already
announced that they will not use these bombs. Sri Lanka is counted among a few countries that have a stockpile of these bombs and are
continuing to use them.
"Instead of promoting
human rights throughout the world, Sri
Lanka has used his position within the
Council to avoid scrutiny as a violator
of human rights" Nobel Peace
"During our visit, we realized that people in
Mannar, the residents as well as the displaced, live in fear and
with a feeling of hopelessness. Catholic clergy and religious we
met on the eve of our departure re-affirmed this, acknowledging
that in the context of Mannar, a priority in their ministry is
to give people hope, and they seek to do this by various
interventions that give witness to the truth regarding the
plight of the people and coming forward to assisting and
protecting victims, survivors and family members of human rights
violations, often at great risk to themselves. Clearly, there is
a total lack of confidence of ordinary people, church leaders
and civil society and even senior government civil officials
about possible redress mechanisms available to the public. We
also saw clearly that the civil administration in Mannar exits
only in paper and name, and that key decision that affect
civilian life is taken by the security forces, side lining and
not even consulting the civil administration, leave alone civil
society and ordinary people. It appeared that Mannar is a
defacto military junta. The considerations for decisions
that affect civilian life are based on military and political
priorities, with minimal or no consideration of humanitarian
needs. Sri Lanka's international human rights commitments and
even the fundamental rights guaranteed to citizens also clearly
have no place in Mannar"
"..We call ourselves Christians. We proclaim that we follow Jesus who lived
and died for the oppressed. Isn�t it a crime for us to call ourselves Christians and
to live as deaf and blind people amidst our oppressed Tamil brothers and sisters who cry for
freedom to live in peace in their own land and homes? You may not agree with me but
I would say this is a wiping out or slow genocide of the Tamil people from their
" For more than one and a half years now,
this (Jaffna) peninsula has been cut off from the rest of the island, after the
Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) closed the only land route through the
narrow strip of land, thus isolating its more than 400,000 residents.
This one and half year history of isolation adds to the already unique
history of this peninsula in a spectacularly terrifying manner.
People have been "marked, stalked and hunted for pleasure" in this
period ... The other aspects of this one and
half year history are what ought to be studied, for it gives not only
staggering lessons on how to "manufacture consent," it also exemplifies
how the world can turn a blind eye to such staggering "consent
Jaffna District Tamil National Alliance parliamentarian, K.
Sivanesan, was killed in a Claymore attack carried out by the
Sri Lanka Army Deep Penetration Unit on A-9 road, 30 minutes
after he crossed into Vanni through Oamanthai / Pu'liyangku'lam
entry point Thursday. The Claymore attack has taken place
between Pu'liyangku'lam and Maangku'lam around 1:20 p.m.,
according to initial reports. The MP's vehicle was targeted when
he was returning to his residence in Mallaavi, after attending
the parliamentary sessions in Colombo. His driver was also
killed in the attack. The DPU attackers have exploded four
Claymore mines in a row, Tamileelam Police officials told
TamilNet. Mr. Sivanesan's driver, Periyannan Maheswararajah,
27, father of one, from Cheddiku'lam, Vavuniyaa, was killed on
the spot. Sivanesan MP succumbed to his injuries while being
rushed to Maangku'lam hospital. A 11-year-old boy from
Kugnchukku'lam, Arulnaathan Lujithnathan, cycling on A9 road was
also injured in the attack. K. Sivanesan, born on 21 January,
1957, was General Manager of Northern Region Palm Development
CO-OP society's Uni-Cluster, between 1996 and 2004, before being
elected to Sri Lanka Parliament. He has worked as accountant of
the palm development co-operative society's union of Jaffna and
a secretary of Federation of popular association in Mallaavi,
Vanni. He was a former student of Nelliyadi Maththiya Mahaa
Viththiyaalayam. Mr. Sivanesan leaves behind his wife and four
children, 2 sons and 2 daughters.
31 January 2008
Three Tamil Civilians shot dead in
Armed men who came on
motorcycles shot and killed three siblings at
Choalaiyamman Koayiladi in Ma'nduvil in
Thenmaraadchi in Jaffna Peninsula, Wednesday
night around 8:00 p.m., sources in
Chaavakachcheari said. The attackers, alleged to
be members of the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Field
Bike Squad, surrounded the house, ordered the
members of the family to go inside a room for
inquiry and sprayed bullets on them, killing
two, including a mother of two children while
the children narrowly escaped from the bullets.
The victims were identified as Palasundaram
Baskaran, 30, Thushyanthan Paleswari , 21,
mother of two, and Palasundaram Parthipan, 19.
Baskaran and Paleswari were killed on the spot.
Parthipan succumbed to his injuries hours later,
caused by the lack of timely medical attendance.
The killings have taken place in the same area
where recently three bodies of youths abducted
and shot dead had been dumped by the killers.
The centuries old Chaiva temple located in
Choalaiyamman Koayiladi is a much venerated
temple with historic significance.
Chaavakachcheari police and Divisional
Magistrate Court are investigating into the
attack by a Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Deep Penetration Unit (DPU) on a
civilian bus travelling to Paalampiddi from
Madhu at 2:25 on 29 January 2008. The
attack killed 20 people, 11 of whom school children, and injured 14,
eight of whom were children." says Tamil Rehabilitation