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Home > Struggle for Tamil Eelam > International Community (IC) should restore the status quo which the IC itself has disturbed in recent times
TAMIL EELAM STRUGGLE FOR FREEDOM
International Community (IC) should restore status quo
Liberation Tigers of Tamileelam (LTTE) Political Head B. Nadesan
[TamilNet, Friday, 30 May 2008]
"Development is possible only when there is permanent peace. To achieve peace the International Community (IC) should engage seriously in restoring the status quo which the IC itself has disturbed in recent times, and should pressurise the Sri Lankan government to come to terms with a negotiated settlement," said Liberation Tigers of Tamileelam (LTTE) Political Head B. Nadesan, in an exclusive interview to TamilNet on Friday, while responding to a question on LTTE's position on International involvement in Colombo's 'development-agenda'. "Recognition of Tamil sovereignty and right to self-determination are key issues in creating a climate for a negotiated settlement," Nadesan added.
'Development' has long been used as a camouflage to deprive the Tamils of their homeland and to subordinate the Tamil regions by the Sinhala majoritarian government of Colombo, Mr. Nadesan further said.
Full text of the interview follows:
The Sinhalese leaders have mastered the art of misleading the donors and the International Community in sustaining their oppressive agenda while diverting the funds to the infrastructure, which has deprived Tamils of their economic opportunities and their very existence in their own villages.
Thus, there was no real capital accumulation in the Tamil regions in the past several decades. The capital accumulation was concentrating in Sinhala areas, especially in and around Colombo.
The Sri Lankan state is successfully making use of the unitary constitution for this anti-Tamil 'development agenda'.
This is why we envisaged extra-constitutional arrangements such as opting for the World Bank to act as a custodian of donor funds to rebuild the Northeast during the negotiations as well as in the Post Tsunami agreement (P-TOMS) signed by the parties.
But, again, what happened to SIHRN and, especially to the P-TOMS agreement, which was a purely humanitarian agreement, has been widely witnessed by the International Community.
The Sri Lanka government can invoke
provisions of the unitary constitution at any time it wishes to nullify
development of the Tamils of the North and East.
Besides the handicapped constitution, large-scale misappropriation of development funds by the government for sustaining the war, and through that sustaining its regime, will never allow any real development.
Further, corruption within the ranks and files of the Sri Lankan government is a serious impediment for any development programme. Even Sinhalese who bring to light such malpractices are penalised violently.
Therefore, the priority of the International Community should first be placed at finding a political solution, before embarking upon a development-agenda in this Island. Development is possible only when there is permanent peace. For that the International Community should engage seriously in restoring the status quo which it itself has disturbed in recent times and should pressurise the Sri Lankan government to come to terms with a negotiated settlement. This only can pave way for a true development.
TamilNet: What is the present status of your dialogue with the Norwegian peace facilitators?
Nadesan: We have requested the Royal Norwegian Government to continue the facilitation. It should also be noted that the Co-Chairs, representing the United States, the European Union, Japan, and Norway, have told the Sri Lankan government to provide access to their representatives and the facilitator to visit Vanni and discuss with us. Norwegian Special Envoy and the Norwegian Ambassador to Sri Lanka have expressed their desire to have dialogue. But, the Sri Lankan government has not been providing access to the Norwegian facilitators in an attempt to block our diplomatic dialogue with the facilitator.
TamilNet: The LTTE is accused of carrying out attacks on civilian targets in the South. Can you comment?
Nadesan: The LTTE categorically denies responsibility for the attacks on civilians in Sri Lanka. We never mean ill-will against the Sinhalese people. Attacks on civilian targets by the Sri Lankan armed forces have become routine occurrences in Vanni. Human Rights violations of civilians such as abductions, disappearances and extra-judicial killings take place throughout the Sri Lanka government controlled territories, every day. Now the Sinhala regime unleashes violence against the Sinhala and Tamil journalists. Many attacks and violations by known perpetrators such as the armed forces have still not been brought to justice. One needs a holistic approach to stop such anti-people activities in Sri Lanka.