Tamils - a Trans State Nation..

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Home > Tamils - a Trans State Nation > Struggle for Tamil Eelam > Indictment against Sri Lanka > Sri Lanka's Shadow War '02 to '07: Introduction & Index > the Record Speaks....

The Charge is Ethnic Cleansing

Sri Lanka's Undeclared War on Eelam Tamils
...in the Shadow of the Ceasefire: 2002 - 2007

  • Sinhala occupation army on a rampage in Jaffna
    - V.Thangavelu, 19 December 2005

The Sinhala occupation army in Jaffna is once again on the rampage. Reports coming from the peninsula for the last 2 weeks speak of SLA soldiers systematically sweeping areas of potential unrest and conducting cordon and search in the Jaffna peninsula. Several villages that include Kachchai area in Thenmaradchy, Ariyalai in Jaffna, Myilankadu in Valikamam North, Erlalai North and Mandan in Vadamaradchy area have been subject to cordon off and search operations.

On December 16, SLA troops cordoned off and conducted house to house search in Mulli, a village in Ariyalai, Jaffna and demanded national identity cards from the inmates.

Many of the villagers are poor and live in thatched huts like those re-settlers from Poompuhar and Maniyam Thottam area in Colombothurai, Jaffna. These coastal villages have been emptied to make way for HSZs surrounded by wired- fence that runs more than 100 metres deep inside.

Tension prevailed in these villages as many were subjected to slurs and warned of dire consequences for any behavior inimical to SLA interests.

The offices of the International Thamileelam Student Union are reported to be under siege by the SLA soldiers. Students have been at the receiving end of indiscriminate assaults by army personnel.

Reports say several youths have been detained following these cordon off and search operations �for further investigations.�

Sriharan Rajagajan (24), a Tamil youth who was arrested by the SLA in Kondavil Tuesday and later released on bail by Jaffna magistrate, had asked for protection from the Jaffna office of the Sri Lanka Human Rights Commission. Rajagajan said in his complaint that SLA arrested him in revenge and that he has received death threats from the army after his release.

Two families resettled in Ariyalai after moving from Vanni have also lodged complaints with the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) of harassment and intimidation by the SLA troops.

On December 18, drivers of auto-rickshaws at Irupalai junction located on Jaffna-Point Pedro road, 5 km North east of Jaffna town, were attacked again by the SLA troops. This attack came as retaliation for complaints lodged with SLMM on December 17, when SLA soldiers had attacked them and forced them away from the junction.

SLA opened fire at the auto-stand to disperse auto-drivers from using the junction to conduct their business. One auto-rickshaw and another motorbike of a civilian left abandoned at the junction were moved to the nearby SLA camp.

According to reports all businesses in Irupalai were closed and the junction was deserted from midday Sunday. Tension spread to nearby Kalviyankadu and Kopay areas where normal life came to a standstill following the Irupalai attacks.

The SLA troops involved in the incident are from the same camp from where six soldiers and an SLA official were killed in a claymore attack on the December 4, 2005.

Same day (December 18) Rasaratnam Puhalasri (33) from Navaly South, an employee at an ice cream parlor at the Parameswara junction was severely injured when SLA troops attacked civilians around the Jaffna campus areas following an altercation between Jaffna campus students at the International Thamileelam Student Union offices. Puhalasiri was admitted to the Jaffna Teaching Hospital and underwent surgery. Residents said that troops forced entry into Student Union offices to prevent a group of campus students from travelling to Punguduthivu, triggering confrontation.

SLA has completely blocked civilian use of the 1 km stretch of Palaly road between Kantharmadam and Thirunelveli. Residents in these areas are confined to their houses and others who had ventured out earlier were unable to return to their residences in the affected areas. They were forced to seek refuge at places of their relatives, sources said.

Members of SLMM met with student officials at about 6.30 p.m. when student leaders accused the SLMM of the lack of effort in preventing SLA from attacking students exercising their right to travel and protest against army harassment. SLA resumed attacking students after the SLMM left the Student Union offices, sources said.

While Jaffna peninsula was turned into a boiling cauldron, protests erupted at Punkudutheevu on Sunday following the discovery of the body of Ilayathambi Tharsini (20) from an abandoned well near SLN camp the previous day. Punkudutheevu is situated 24 km from Jaffna. Protesters alleged that the Sri Lanka Navy personnel have abducted Tharsini, who was on her way to her aunt's house Friday, raped her and then dumped her body into the abandoned well.

The body was discovered by civilians who set out on search inside the no-go HSZ area Saturday and reported troops� shoe-prints around the well.

A civilian identified as P. Varatharajah, 55, from 7th division of Punguduthivu was wounded when Naval personnel opened fire at the protesters.

The protesters did not allow the troops or the police to reach the well until acting judges from Kayts Mrs. Linga Thurairajah and M. Thirunavukarasu, acting judges from Kayts visited the spot and assured the protestors that the body will be safely transport to Jaffna Hospital mortuary for post-mortem examinations.

It will be recalled that Sarathambal ( 29), daughter of local Brahmin priest and mother of a three years old child, was forcibly dragged out from her home in Punkudutivu by gunmen and gang-raped and murdered in cold-blood.. on December 28, 1999 during curfew time. Her body was dumped under the bushes near Kannaki Amman Temple situated just 20 metres away from her house.

Simultaneously cordon off and search operation code named �Strangers Night� was launched in capital Colombo where thousands of Thamils were pulled from their sleep. Many Thamils were taken into custody in Wellawatta, Narahenpita, Kirulapone and Bambalapitiya police areas.

Colombo DIG Pujitha Jayasundara said the surprise house-to-house operation was carried out jointly by the Police, Army, Navy and the Air Force to track down illegal activities and suspected terrorist members.

He said during the operation which started at 11 pm on Saturday and ended at 5 am yesterday, 107 people were taken into custody on suspicion while five of them had been detained.

During the operation a Senior Tamil Journalist B. Parththipan employed by Thamil language daily Thinakural was arrested by the Kirulapana police while returning home after night duty in his company vehicle. Parththipan was arrested around 11.30 along with two other Thinakural staff members attached to the computer division. When he was first detained by police he had produced his media accreditation card issued by the government Information Department. However, police has informed Parththipan that they didn't care about the identity card. They were also denied any phone call and detained at the Kirulapana police station till 3am. Next morning the three were produced in front of CID officers who recorded personal details and also took finger prints and photographs. After the interrogation they were brought back to the Kirulapana police station and put back in the cell. They were released on bail at 11am twelve hours later on Monday.

The Police did not take any steps to inform the arrest of these persons to the newspaper company where they are employed or to their relatives.

The Hill Country Thamils, who are next in line, will be targeted and terrorized by the armed forces under the guise of looking for �terrorists.� To the armed forces all Thamils are terrorists!

It is no exaggeration to say that SLA is the only military force in the world to ask fellow citizens the question �Oya Demela da?� (Are you a Thamil?)

On December 16, Thamil daily Namathu Eelanaadu� in Jaffna was raided by the army.

�Namadu Eelanaadu is one of the four daily newspapers published in the capital of war ravaged Northern Province. All four dailies in Jaffna take an editorial line that supports Tamil nationalism, which is the ideological basis of the separatist�s armed struggle in the north and east of Sri Lanka,� states an FMM press release.

The FMM said it views this situation as being a direct result of the escalation of violence in the Jaffna peninsula during the past few weeks in which a number of soldiers, militants and civilians had died as a result of these unfortunate developments.

The FMM says it fears the media in Jaffna may become a target of escalating violence again, as happened on earlier occasions.

The statement warned that �in a situation such as prevails in Jaffna today, searching of newspaper offices by the military could send a signal that the media is under military scrutiny, which could impede the freedom of expression and information. Media and journalists in Jaffna face challenging situations in gathering and dissemination of information as war clouds gather.�

The SLTMA is of the view that the arbitrary arrest of Tamil journalist and newspaper employees is a serious threat and intimidation to the Thamil journalists in general. Security forces in Jaffna district last week entered the office of "Namathu Eezhanadu" a Tamil daily newspaper and conducted search operation and subjected journalists in the office to severe interrogation. Now a Tamil journalist in Colombo had been subjected to arrest and detention without any reason.

All these high-handed and arbitrary acts by the SLA are meant apparently as a ploy to intimidate the people into submission! The SLA is smarting under the recent poster campaign by several civil organizations in Jaffna asking the armed forces to quit Jaffna! The army thinks the time has come to teach a lesson to the restless public who have dared to challenge them!

The change of guards has given a false sense of courage to the besieged troops occupying Jaffna to go on the offensive using emergency powers. The prospects of Jaffna once again relapsing into a killing field for the armed forces is very real.

Newly appointed hawkish Army Commander, Lieutenant General Sarath Fonseka on assuming duties has declared that the security forces are fully geared to fight a fresh war.

"Although both sides are prepared, the LTTE cannot face a civil war as there are many parties opposing the Tigers. Even if a war is to break out, we are confident that we can beat the LTTE" Lieutenant Fonseka reportedly said.

He said the army would soon begin to restructure and strengthen the forces and while new weapons would be purchased, the security forces would be prepared to "wipe out the LTTE once and for all."

"We have lost a lot of intelligence officers since the signing of the CFA and we cannot afford to lose anymore. All steps will also be taken to protect our soldiers in the north and east as if the army does not survive then the people cannot survive," the Army Commander said.

"Although we are ready to face an ethnic conflict, there is room for improvement within the army which we will begin immediately," the Army Commander said.

Current offensive against civilians and students in Jaffna is an ominous sign. Lieutenant General Fonseka is translating his threats into real action! Using brutal force to put down the civil unrest is his style of fighting the ethnic conflict.

Sri Lankan armed forces are institutionally racist! And the ruling Sinhalese politicians have used it as an instrument of state terror to brutalise the Thamil people.

There existed and still exists a climate of impunity that the Sinhala army could arrest, assault, rape, torture and murder Thamils in complete freedom!



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