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Sri Lanka's Genocidal War - '95 to '01
"....Civilian casualties are mounting as fighting continues. International agencies say people fleeing combat areas were seen carrying the injured. According to reports, Tiger-held Chavakachcheri, Kaithady, Madduvil and Sarasalai in Thenmaratchy have been subjected to massive Airforce bombardment and artillery shelling.
At least 50 civilians are reported killed and some 200 wounded. But Mannar Bishop Rayappu Joseph puts the civilian casualties in Madduvil alone at 500.... Many people trying to flee the war zone have also been killed. In a letter to foreign missions in Colombo, Bishop Joseph alleges that the attitude of the armed forces is that “It is better to kill the people than allow them to go into LTTE-controlled areas”... [see also The Record Speaks....]
Shells fired at Columbuthurai in the western part of Jaffna town on 15 May killed five people and wounded six others.
French medical agency Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) says that military targets in the vicinity of health facilities endanger patients and may prevent access of the population to medical care. A Sri Lankan Army base lies within 15 metres of Jaffna general hospital. Many military installations are near refugee camps, schools and health facilities. The Jaffna hospital continues to suffer from shortage of medicines and medical staff.
Some of the injured are being brought by boats across the Jaffna lagoon to Vanni hospitals. In late May, MSF assisted in transporting 25 wounded civilians from Kilinochchi and Mallavi hospitals to the Vavuniya hospital. ...
In the Vanni, the security forces have severely restricted medical supplies since March this year. MSF said in mid-May that in the earlier weeks, more than 40 patients were transferred or discharged without adequate surgical treatment and over 3,700 out-patients were turned away without medication. There is a critical shortage of medical supplies, especially emergency surgical items, dressing material and antibiotics....The military allowed only a small fraction of the medicines earmarked for the first quarter of 2000 into the Vanni in late May. According to reports, 65% of the 345,000 population in Mullaitivu and Kilinochchi districts has suffered from malaria and many people have contracted the disease several times. NGOs say drugs to treat malaria are acutely short.
...Sri Lankan Airforce planes bombed the fishing village of Pallikudah in Kilinochchi District on 12 May, killing five members of one family, including two children. MSF says doctors at Mallavi hospital attended 11 other bomb victims and treatment was hindered by the acute shortage of medical supplies..." (British Refugee Council, Sri Lanka Monitor, May 2000)