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 > Struggle for Tamil Eelam > International Frame of  Struggle for Tamil Eelam  >  India & the Struggle for Tamil Eelam > India Circumspect about LTTE air strike whilst UK All-Party Parliamentary group on Sri Lanka rushes in...

India & the Struggle for Tamil Eelam

India Circumspect about LTTE air strike whilst
UK All-Party Parliamentary Group on Sri Lanka rushes in...

28 March 2007

[see also Katunayake Military Airbase Bombed by LTTE Air Wing, 25 March 2007  and Another U.S. base in the Indian Ocean? - B. Muralidhar Reddy in the Hindu, 9 March 2007]

Comment by tamilnation.org "...today,  the US and India may find common cause in weakening the LTTE - but weaken it in such a way that thereafter each of them may successfully jockey for position and influence in the Indian region.  The 'weakening' in this context means the isolation and annihilation of Velupillai Pirabakaran and securing an LTTE under a 'reformed' leadership....The political reality is that, on the one hand, the US is mindful that it was after all President Jayawardene's 'growing togetherness' with the US which led to New Delhi's support of the Tamil militant movement in the early 1980s. At that time the US kept its oars in Tamil waters with efforts such as hoisting the Eelam flag in the State of Massachusetts. Today, the same US continues to speak of the 'legitimate aspirations' of the Tamil people.  On the other hand, New Delhi has no desire to lose its ability to play the 'Tamil card' to keep Sri Lanka in line in the years to come - even after the successful annihilation of Velupillai Pirabakaran and the weakening of the LTTE. And so New Delhi too proclaims ad nauseam that they are concerned to secure the 'legitimate aspirations' of the Tamil people. Additionally it builds its own network amongst dissident Tamils both in Sri Lanka and abroad to propagate its interests. It is within the interstices of this international frame that the struggle of the people of Tamil Eelam to be free from alien Sinhala rule continues under conditions of excruciating agony and suffering . And it is this same international frame which Sinhala Sri Lanka seeks to use to continue its genocidal onslaught on the Tamil people..." Nadesan Satyendra in Black Pebbles & White Pebbles, 12 September 2006

India Circumspect about LTTE air strike, 28 March 2007

India treaded with caution and reserve Wednesday (28 March 2007)  while reacting to the Tamil Tigers' air strike on the Sri Lankan Air Force base at Katunayake airport on Sunday, Indian press reports said. Indian Foreign Secretary Shiv Shanker Menon was quoted as saying India was concerned at the general escalation of violence in which the airstrike was one incident.

"We are very concerned at the escalation of violence in Sri Lanka in the last few weeks. The incident is one part of the violent incidents that we have seen. The humanitarian consequences really worry us, when you see thousands of internally displaced people," rediff.com quoted Menon as saying.

He underplayed the air strike by the LTTE, and said,

"To pick on an individual incident of violence will not help solve the root cause of the problem. The root cause of the problem is the conflict that has escalated the violence in last few weeks."

Menon avoided responding to a query on whether LTTE's air power as such posed a threat to India. Instead he insisted that a solution to the protracted conflict is the real issue.

"We will join the voice within Sri Lanka and abroad who would hope that violence comes to an end soon and that they can find a solution to this conflict, a solution that enables all the communities in Sri Lanka to live together in peace," Menon added.

Sri Lankan government spokesmen have been saying that the LTTE's air capability posed a threat to other countries in the region, especially India and Indonesia, rediff.com reported. But according to various reports, the Sri Lankan government has been involving security personnel from other countries in conducting its own military operations against the LTTE.

Pakistan, Israel and Ukraine have been mentioned in this connection. Some reports have mentioned that Ukrainian mercenary pilots have flown the Sri Lankan aircraft conducting bombing raids in the LTTE-held regions in the northeast of the island in recent weeks, rediff.com reported. Conceivably, India would be watching the growing foreign military presence in Sri Lanka with a sense of disquiet, the agency said.

Meanwhile Colombo has blamed the radar installed by India at the Katunayake airbase for their security failure on Sunday to detect and intercept the intruding LTTE aircraft. But Menon summarily rejected this. "As far as we know, there was no scope of the Indian radars failing," he said.

Whilst.. Rt Hon the Lord Naseby of Sandy, Co-Chair of the UK All-Party Parliamentary group on Sri Lanka rushes in...

Rt Hon the Lord Naseby of Sandy, Co-Chair of the UK All-Party Parliamentary group on Sri Lanka in an official statement has condemned the attack on the Air Force base in Colombo and has appealed to the British government to bring concerted pressure on the LTTE return to negotiating table.

The statement reads: The members of the UK All Party Parliamentary Group on Sri Lanka unequivocally condemn the offensive aerial bomb attack carried out by the LTTE on the Sri Lankan Air Force based in Katunayake on 26 March 2007 killing and injuring Air Force personnel and causing damage to military infrastructure. This provocative action really undermines the peace process.

This attack demonstrates the offensive air capability of the LTTE which undoubtedly poses a threat not only to the security of Sri Lanka, but to the entire South Asian Region. It also exemplifies the LTTE’s steady expansion of its military capabilities with the objective of carrying out terrorist attacks.

The fact that the LTTE has used ultra light aircraft which are difficult to detect on radar for carrying out bombing and possible suicide missions, is a development which the international community must note with great alarm. The acquisition of air capability by a terrorist movement poses a new threat and runs counter to the current global efforts to defeat terrorism. Undoubtedly international terrorist groups constantly adopt each others tactics and this incident sets a dangerous precedent which All Party Parliamentary Group urges the British government to take cognisance of this factor.

The UK AA Party Parliamentary Group on Sri Lanka, through its C0-chair Lord Naseby of Sandy requests the British Government to fully implement the LTTE proscription, bearing in mind the close nexus between its fund raising in this country and its acquisition of further military strike capabilities.

The recent detection of the ship loads of arms consignments and the possession of aircraft with military hardware are a clear result of the steady flow of funds to the LTTE’s war chest. The All Party Parliamentary Group is strongly convinced that the UK government firmly supports the efforts of the Government of Sri Lanka to bring about a political settlement to the conflict through discussion.

The British Government therefore must bring concerted pressure upon the LTTE to return to the negotiating table, by pro-actively curbing its fund raising activities in the UK, which are undoubtedly a major contributory factor to its present intransigence.



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