Sri Lanka: Are terrorists rewriting laws of war?
Posted on November 21st, 2013

Shenali D Waduge

Sri Lanka ended one arm of the terrorists in May 2009. The other more powerful arm remains at large, remnants in hiding locally while others are more vociferously and openly engaging foreign politicians and influencing diplomatic relations as well. Their links to terrorism have taken second place with the strength of their propaganda placing them in a position to determine electoral politics in those countries thus signaling future calamities if unchecked. Herein lies our problem. We have 32 countries banning LTTE as a terrorist entity through their respective local terrorist acts/laws inside of which are a host of elements that LTTE cannot indulge in. In identifying LTTE as a terrorist they have lost their status of being freedom fighters. Why have foreign nations allowed a banned terrorist entity such leverage and when foreign parliamentarians well aware of the terrorist quotient in the 30 year terror faced by Sri Lanka descend to humiliate a democratically elected leader, the nation and its people does this not equate to a new problem of terrorists rewriting laws of war?

In ancient times rules of war was decided between warring parties. Then came Henry Dunant with the idea to codify laws regulating armed conflict. Following the 2 World Wars we now have 4 Geneva Conventions covering soldiers wounded in battle, sailors shipwrecked and wounded, prisoners of war and civilians taken by enemy military.

Only nation states can sign and ratify international treaties and be bound by them. Terrorists or even freedom fighters neither sign, ratify or are bound by any international treaty and would never care to follow them. But why would they be given asylum under humanitarian laws which they are not bound to and would never comply with? Have those determining to allow refuge under these humanitarian laws considered that reversal of the refuge a soldier is by law complied to offer is NEVER returned by the terrorist? If so where lies the morality and justice for this soldier who would be as good as dead in terrorist custody? Do the law makers not take to heart that a soldier is just as much human and is the defender of the nation against breach of terrorist attack? Is it not the terrorist who is the initiator of terror while the soldier is a mere respondent? The respondent must have far more legal right than an initiator of terror.

If Al Qaeda is neither a country nor a lawful ruling party of a convention signatory, and by definition Al Qaeda members cannot be protected by Geneva Conventions whether its members follow the laws of war or not the same status quo must apply to the LTTE -” by LTTE it means not only the men in the jungles of Mullaitivu but ALL members of the LTTE including those holding foreign passports and engaging foreign parliamentarians but disguised as bogus charity/humanitarian and other organizations.

If Al Qaeda fighters when captured cannot claim prisoner of war status or be entitled to protections under the Third Geneva Convention -” who says that the LTTE fighters can?

Obviously the Geneva Conventions need to now be reviewed. When the Conventions were written wars were typically state-on-state conflicts. Wars or conflicts inside a country were known as conflicts -Ëœnot of an international character-â„¢. However, Geneva Conventions cover both international and conflicts inside countries.

What is strange is when one single and isolated attack presumably by Al Qaeda and the laws in place were turned upside down and War on Terror meant the US could not only invade and occupy nations but take under its control how laws were to be determined.

If 2001, War on Terror after the US attacks meant that -Ëœenemy combatants-â„¢ were not protected by the Geneva Conventions or as prisoners of war, is there -Ëœselected-â„¢ -Ëœenemy combatants-â„¢. Is this not why Iraq-â„¢s Abu Ghraib prison detainees remain as they have, torture takes place, secret renditions take place.

Taking matters to another dimension has been the freedom fighters. LTTE lost this status in killing its own and by virtue of its proscription as a terrorist organization and the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi on foreign soil as well as the fact that LTTE wore uniform suits and had a command and control similar to national armies and chose to carry out terror attacks posed as civilians too.

Here-â„¢s where the confusion gets worse. Ever since its first act of terror in the mid 1980s and killing that took place first in 1975 with a Tamil Mayor and Tamil policemen, LTTE has evolved from carrying out sporadic attacks and moving on to suicide terrorism, assassinations and in particular civilian killings did not go beyond a diplomatic statement issued to pay condolences to the dead and insist -Ëœboth sides-â„¢ return to the negotiating table.

When David Cameron orders Sri Lanka to carry out an investigation to the final phase of the war he has completely omitted that LTTE terror started in 1980s and thousands of civilians and others fell victims to LTTE terror. It is a question of why one group of civilians should be omitted? Moreover, LTTE was banned by UK in 2001, ever since LTTE has not only continued its terrorism, but throughout the peace talks and ceasefires that prevailed carried out child recruitment which UN agencies possess evidence of and scores of violations including assassination of a Tamil foreign minister at his home unarmed posing no threat to the LTTE. None of these acts of terror have resulted in any of the rhetoric that David Cameron opted to indulge in with the explicit threat before coming that he was going to talk tough. That tough talk came after meetings with LTTE front organizations‚  who remain the other arm of the LTTE operating on UK and international soil well known to the Western international community in the light of some of its members being part of the LTTE throughout its terror rule. UK was then declared and continue to be referred to as the international head quarters of the LTTE, its strategist openly operated from UK with no travel restrictions or queries from British authorities, UK also was well aware of LTTE fund raising events and the illegal scams that its members violate the rights of UK citizens. Moreover gang violence by UK Tamils have led in 25 deaths of Tamils excluding the deaths by intimidations.

However, when UK parliamentarians have been not only guest speakers, guests at LTTE events and we now see these escalating to a foreign Parliamentarian making open threats at a sovereign government because of electoral politics does this not look any different to the manner Indian Central Government is being bribed by its politicians in the Southern State of Tamil Nadu?

When LTTE terror is well documented even in the echelons of the UN and by intelligence of foreign governments why is it that not only have these terrorists been allowed to dictate how foreign parliamentarians now function on their own soil but are also determining how they respond in their bilateral relations with Sri Lanka.

This is taking terrorism to a different level from what it was originally. If it is so far only applicable to the LTTE in time to come if other terror group replicates the same modus operandi of the LTTE in suits how will that be for sovereign governments especially those that are attempting to balance the status quo?

War itself is wrong. There is no question of both sides when it comes to terrorists. It is they who began acts of terror upon people not associated with their grievance. This is a violation of the individuals right to live and a host of other universal rights as well. All these violations have been committed by the LTTE. It is therefore these violations that needs to be first taken up. The excuse that LTTE terror is no more is technically incorrect. The people very much part of the LTTE from the time the LTTE started still remain where they operated from -” overseas. These LTTE members can be dealt ONLY by the foreign governments that continue to entertain them on their soil giving them legitimacy and taking that legitimacy to the extent of allowing them to influence the decision making of their countries.

This influencing can reach dangerous proportions for Rajiv Gandhis death itself was on contract and the truth of this contract has yet to emerge. What nations must now realize is whether they would allow terrorist groups to dictate their legislative rights and diplomatic relations. No amount of terrorist-influenced diplomatic bullying can erase the hard truth that LTTE-â„¢s crimes cannot be erased and cannot be forgotten and buried as dead alongside its leader so long as the main arm of the LTTE remains functional even without the gun. In reality it poses a bigger threat to not only the natives of these foreign countries but to the peace enjoying people of Sri Lanka as well. It may be no better a time to take a look at the rise in crimes associated with these LTTE groups across the nations that it now openly operates with the blessings of parliamentarians that it has pocketed and to seriously address these issues before they turn into stalemate given that the LTTE has a host of human rights organizations and media fraternity to even turn the tables on these host nations.

Terrorists should not decide how international laws are to be written -” starting with LTTE.

17 Responses to “Sri Lanka: Are terrorists rewriting laws of war?”

  1. S de Silva Says:

    Quite right. The goSL must secure solid Legal Muscle at International Level to back itself up against terror

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    Unfortunately they have.

    War crimes laws are NOT applicable to terrorists. They never signed the Geneva convention!!

    SL must USE this to SL’s advantage. We CANNOT change the world. We must ADAPT.

    CREATE a pro-SL anti-TE terrorist group and send them on rampage against Tamil Homeland believers.

    This is what USA does (e.g. FSA), Russia does (e.g. pro-Russian terrorist groups in Chechnya), Endia does (e.g. LTTE), China does (e.g. Maoists), Muslims do (e.g. AQ).

  3. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Yes those who supported the LITE to the LITE members are shaping the foreign policy towards Sri Lanka and they are successful. The only way to battle them is to use the same tactics they use. Their strongest weapon is the video tapes which is played ad nausea backed up with hyper propaganda feed backs.

    Jayalalitha is a prime example of this. She and her party is not only spearheading India’s foreign policy regarding Sri Lanka they are now dictating to the center. Take Karunanidhi another pro LITE supporter. He has blatantly resurrected TESO (Tamil Eelam Supporters Organization) and now they are playing an active role in disseminating anti Sri Lanka propaganda including the need to form Eelam.

    Sri Lanka needs to take their success stories and make use them to benefit Sri Lanka. Give out Video tapes that contradict Video named “channel 4”. Stop anyone who is visiting Sri Lanka to make such videos and if they are successful in making such videos then confiscate and destroy them followed with criminal charges on such people. Use the strength of the Sino-Sri Lankan strategic partnership to check mate Tamil dominated India and also engage Pakistan in technology transfer of nuclear and missile technology. Keep the military in those provinces that the Tamils claim for Eelam. Divide those provinces making it that harder to form Eelam and move Sinhalese families whose members are or were soldiers.

    Since some nations are leveraging their trade with Sri Lanka against the trumped up charges of human rights then Sri Lanka return the favor by closing their embassies. Other nations will get the message that such a path only removes their power from Colombo. If more thought is given to this I am sure Sri Lanka to the SIS would find ways to counter the Tamil diaspora and their attempts to foment separatist movements in Sri Lanka.

    If Sri Lanka goes back to her history a similar situation where the Christian west tried to destroy Buddhism in Sri Lanka and almost succeeded. Two events stand out. The first is the Panadura debate where Buddhism won over Christianity and the second is the attempts that the Buddhist Sanga did to fight back the Christianizing of Sri Lanka. Sunday Christian schools were also used as Sunday Buddhist teachings and it worked.

    The best weapon Sri Lanka has is to use the successful methods of the enemies of Sri Lanka against them.

  4. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Second comment;
    What the Tamil Diaspora are engaging is not only dangerous to Sri Lanka but could lead to another war or the creation of Eelam and they have the full support of India

    In that case then it is time for the secret service of Sri Lanka to help the divisive forces within India. When the authorities of New Delhi accuse Sri Lanka of engaging in the domestic issues of India then Sri Lanka has the golden opportunity to point to the rise and actions of TESO which has got the blessing of New Delhi and till India stops her meddling in Sri Lanka it is open season to do the same with India and with the support of Pakistan India is in no position for the Maoists, The Khalistan movement, The separatist movement of Assam and Nagaland to Mizoram to Kashmir to get full support from Sri Lanka and here is the clincher: base this support on the human rights of these people for that is what the Tamil Diaspora are disseminating that the Sri Lankan Tamils are facing horrendous human rights violations which justify their designs to form Eelam.

    Take that and apply it on India. It would be amazing what a small nation like Sri Lanka with the support of Pakistan can do to India’s security and integrity. Always keep in mind it was India that helped start the war, fully supported the Tamil Tigers and after the war ended India continues to use diplomatic channels to continue the war through diplomatic channels.

    No matter what Indian representatives may say of the supposed friendship between India and Sri Lanka India continues to be the biggest hurdle to reach peace and prosperity in Sri Lanka.

  5. thurai Says:

    Terrorist don´t rewrite laws of war. Western countries rewrite the law against Terrorism.
    I mean when a Terrorist Group which is harmless for western countries , considered as Liberation fighters.
    Tamil Terrorism killed their own community and others in Sri Lanka. BUt GOSL destroyed
    Tamil Terrorism in 2009. Western countries show their real face now. They banned Terrorism but
    allowed to collect money forcibly from Tamils and killings in Sri Lanka. Now many Tamils refuse to give money to LTTE in western countries without fear because of GOSL.

    Tamil Terrorism and western countries accuse Sri Lanka for war crimes. At same time Tamil Terrorism
    was defeated in Sri Lanka and the whole world by GOSL.

    THERE IS NO CHANCE FOR THE TRUTH IN THE WORLD WHICH BELIVE ONLY LIARS

  6. thurai Says:

    Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha //Second comment;
    What the Tamil Diaspora are engaging is not only dangerous to Sri Lanka but could lead to another war or the creation of Eelam and they have the full support of India//

    We thought LTTE is everywhere in Sri Lanka and they can attack anytime. What happend after may 2009?
    Destruction of LTTE heads Sri Lanka is under control. Don´t imagine all western countries and Diaspora
    against GOSL. Persons behind World Tamil Forum, British Tamil Forum, Transnational Government of Tamileelam.
    and other Organisation which have number of relations and friends has Terror money in their hand.

    Above said Organizations are controlling LTTE Terrorism & Moneylaundering for the last 30 yers.
    Now those organizations are working hand in hand with some western countries and Politicians.

    THERE IS NO ORGANISATIONS FROM TAMILS OR GOSL TO TAKE LEGAL ACTION AGAINST THEM
    BECAUSE THE TAMIL TERRORIST RATS ARE DANCING EVERYWHERE

  7. Susantha Wijesinghe Says:

    Mr. Bernard,

    Your first comment, second line carries the most critical message. “” The only way to battle them is to use the same tactics they use “” Absolutely. VIDEO TAPES. VIDEO TAPES.

    Sri Lanka Film Unit, together with the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Police, along with all those who possess footages of LTTE TAMIL TERRORISM, should do a COMPREHENSIVE DOCUMENTARY FILM, of the atrocities committed by the LTTE Tamils. THIS IS THE WAY TO START. GOVERNMENT SHOULD FUND IT, PERIOD.

    All this while, we are acting like the proverbial Arndiyage Kenda Haliya, each one putting a fistful of rice into the pot.

    THERE SHOULD BE A PLAN.

    TAMIL LTTE ATROCITIES MUST BE EXPOSED TO THE WHOLE WORLD, AND THIS EVISAGED FILM MUST BE SENT TO ALL THE EMBASSIES IN THE WORLD. THOUASNDS OF COPIES SHOULD BE SENT WORLDWIDE.

    THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN INITIATED BY GLP, but he is in HIBERNATION. I DO NOT THINK HE WILL EVER WAKE UP.

    The Movement convened by Dr. Nath Amarakone can give a great hand to this effort. THIS IS THE START AND WAY TO GO. Mr. Bernard, please think of ways to get this idea of yours, moving RIGHT NOW.

    THIS WILL VIRTUALLY, EXPOSE THE TAMIL TERRORISTS LTTE, AND THEIR DENIGRATING SRI LANKA HAS TO BE STOPPED ON THE TRACKS.

    ALSO THERE SHOULD BE A VERY COMPRHENSIVE LIST OF THOSE WHO ARE SUPPOSED TO BE MISSING< ALONG WITH NAMES, ADDRESSES, AND PHOTOGRAPHS. IT SHOULD BE FIRST CIRCULATED TO UK< CANADA< AUSTRALIA, NEW ZEALAND, GERMANY, AND FRANCE FOR A START. MOST OF THE MISSING COULD BE FOUND IN THESE COUNTRIES. THIS TOO COULD BE PUT ON FILM. THEN THE TAMIL WOMEN WILL STOP SHOUTING AANDAVANEY AT WHIT AH FEET.

    GET THIS GOING BERNARD. GET THIS GOING.

  8. Lorenzo Says:

    “The only way to battle them is to use the same tactics they use.”

    I fully agree.

    “Jayalalitha is a prime example of this. She and her party is not only spearheading India’s foreign policy regarding Sri Lanka they are now dictating to the center. Take Karunanidhi another pro LITE supporter. He has blatantly resurrected TESO (Tamil Eelam Supporters Organization) and now they are playing an active role in disseminating anti Sri Lanka propaganda including the need to form Eelam.

    Sri Lanka needs to take their success stories and make use them to benefit Sri Lanka.”

    Agree.

    But the problem is “hitha honda gaeni”s in SL. They don’t want SL to do what SL’s enemies do.

    “Do un to them what they do un to you.” – Ananda-USA.

  9. Lorenzo Says:

    Children DELIBERATELY killed by MRF Brishit soldiers in Northern Ireland in a year.

    Siobhan McCabe (4), shot near her house by British soldiers.

    Rosaleen Gavin (8), shot by British soldiers from an observation post.

    John Maguire (2), crushed by a car when its driver was shot dead by a British soldier.

    Kevin Heatley (12), shot by British soldier.

    Stephen McConomy (11), shot in head by plastic bullet fired from a nearby armored vehicle.

    Carol Ann Kelly (11), shot in head by British soldier’s rubber bullet as she brought milk home from a nearby shop.

    Annette McGavigan (14), shot by British soldiers.

    Stephen Geddes (10), shot in head at close range by British soldier with rubber bullet.

    Daniel Barrett (15), shot in his home from a nearby BA observation post.

    David McCafferty (14), shot while trying to drag to safety someone who the soldiers had just shot.

    Patrick Crawford (15), while walking with two others, shot by British soldiers.

    Manus Deery (15), shot by army sniper as he brought supper home from nearby shop.

    Now look who is throwing stones at us!!!

    Lets investigate these at the next UNHRC.

  10. Nihal Fernando Says:

    When the terrorists were catagorised as good terrorists and bad terrorists and labeled the LTTE into the good lot by the former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton putting herself into the ugly side what more we can expect from some of those western politicians who are obviously on the LTTE terrorists’ payroll!

    If the weir and the fence eating the paddy field what principles of justice we can expect from those rogue politicians!

  11. mario_perera Says:

    Resolution against Murali

    Nov 22 (DM) A resolution condemning the statement made by Muttiah Muralitharan was unanimously passed at the monthly meeting of the Chavakachcheri Urban Council today.

    “Hereafter, we will protest if he held cricket training camps in the North and the East,”

    Who are they to protest against (with a view to stopping) any citizen of Sri Lanka engaging in his legitimate rights, especially in social welfare) anywhere in the country?

    It has not taken long for the Northern Provincial Council to rear its hood and show its fangs.

    How would it be if they also had land and police powers?

    As things are if Murali persists in gong ahead with his project for the benefit of the Tamil youth, it will have to be with army and police protection. How would it be if the army was withdrawn from the Peninsula as the LTTE rump now disguised as TNA demand?

    Mario Perera
    Kadawata

  12. Lorenzo Says:

    “Resolution against Murali

    Nov 22 (DM) A resolution condemning the statement made by Muttiah Muralitharan was unanimously passed at the monthly meeting of the Chavakachcheri Urban Council today.

    “Hereafter, we will protest if he held cricket training camps in the North and the East,””

    Looks like SL is already DIVIDED!

    This is what happened to EVERY SENSIBLE TAMIL.

  13. Lorenzo Says:

    Another example why SL is now actually DIVIDED.

    “[TamilNet, Wednesday, 20 November 2013, 22:18 GMT]
    District Court of Point Pedro in Jaffna on Wednesday dismissed the claim by the Sri Lankan military that the land, which the Urban Council of Valveddith-thu’rai (VVT) had chosen to build a public park at Theeruvil was a property that should belong to the SL military. Legal sources in VVT said the civic body could now proceed with building the park which is situated at a key memorial site, where three significant monuments stood in remembrance of key LTTE leaders and commanders who sacrificed their lives under the occupation of Indian and Sri Lankan militaries and civilians massacred by the Indian military at VVT in 1989.”

  14. jayasiri Says:

    thank you Shenali Waduge.. again. ONLY problem we have in expat community as well as Sri Lankans in SRI LANKA NOW, are all express their opposition & heartfelt DISGUST about the Int. Community mostly US & EU, but concrete action follows.

    HOWEVER there must be a UNITED FRONT comprising legal minds, public sector expertise & above all THE WILL TO CARRY OUT PLAN to finish. Few months ago one Mr. Chanaka Bandara ( I foregt the correct name) a LAWYER FROM Australia had high hopes of getting some DIRECT APPROACH to solve this HIGHY ORGANIZED LTTE problem through peaceful means.

    For some reason, noone followed this through & even United Sri Lanka Orgs in Australia & NZ are very slow in pursuing this. I know it is easy for me & for many others to say..REAL HARD WORK is to get SOME PROGRESS in getting LTTE punished in a way, they are DEMANONISING SRI LANKA.

    There should be COHESIVE, UNITED FRONT which can answer & respond for each and every accsuation LTTE puts forward. Even the responses here is ample proof of that, our Sri Lankan brothers & sisters including some Tamils GENUINELY want to see some end to this LTTE menace.

    Unfortunately, by writing & exprssing our opposition alone would not suffice. WE NEED TO MUSTER a well versed & thought out plan involving Internatioal laws & how previous situations & wars were conducted to PUNISH the terrorists in their countries.

    Hope with these 13 responses our patriots will get some courage to DEVOTE MORE TIME to get what is needed done fast. The only excuse we had was, waiting till CHOGM was over to start the process. SO THE TIME IS NOW..not tomorrow or day after…….Thanks you all~ J.

  15. Ananda-USA Says:

    Bravo … Australia! NO HALF-MEASURES!

    If you are ILLEGAL, you get DEPORTED!

    Sri Lanka should DO THE SAME: No HALF-MEASURES!

    INVESTIGATE the Citizenship Status of 1.6 Million potential ILLEGAL Tamil IMMIGRANTS (per 2012 Census, accounting for 1.5 million who left as FAKE refugees) from Tamil Nadu illegally imported into Sri Lanka the last 30 Years of LTTE Rule of the North when Sri Lanka lost control of its coastline.

    ENFORCE the Law & DEPORT if found to be ILLEGAL; No HALF-MEASURES … just like Australia!

    Let them CLAIM they are REFUGEES from Tamil Nadu; DEPORT THEM ANYWAY … No HALF-MEASURES!

    ……………………
    Australia returns remaining Sri Lankan boat arrivals to Colombo

    ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

    Nov 22, Colombo: The Australian Government has successfully returned every one of the 79 Sri Lankans who arrived illegally in Australia by boat on October 10, the Australian High Commission in Colombo said today.

    The last six Sri Lankans returned this week joined the group of 73 who were returned last month after arriving illegally by boat and being screened out of a protection assessment process.

    “The government’s new policy implementation sends a strong message that if you arrive illegally by boat, you will be sent back to Sri Lanka,” the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Scott Morrison said today.

    “The Australian Government’s policies are tougher than ever before and ensure that people seeking to come to Australia by boat without a visa do not get to stay in Australia,” Morrison added.

    More than 1100 people who arrived in Australia by boat have been sent home since October 2012.

    “The message is clear: people who pay smugglers are risking their lives and throwing their money away. There is no visa awaiting them, they will not get what they paid for, they will be sent home,” the Minister said.

    Australia and Sri Lanka have strong cooperation at the operational level to disrupt people smuggling ventures departing Sri Lanka.

    “The Australian Government does not deal in half measures and has the policies and resolve to fight people smugglers and stop illegal boat arrivals,” the Australian Minister asserted.

    The Australian government will continue to return people seeking to come to that country illegally by boat, according to the Minister.

    People removed involuntarily do not have access to reintegration assistance.

  16. Ananda-USA Says:

    It is AMAZING how Indians who RECOGNIZE that “it is the standard practice of the separatists in Kashmir, insurgents in the Northeast and the Maoists in what was once known as the Dandakaranya area in central India to position themselves behind women and children when they attack the police” STILL FAIL TO ACKNOWLEDGE THAT acknowledge that the LTTE separatists did the same, not only in the last phase of the Eelam War IV, but throughout their terrorist rampage spanning 30 years.

    I recall how the LTTE emptied Jaffna of people at gunpoint and moved all them to the Wanni when the Sri Lanka Army re-captured Jaffna, so they can hide behind their bodies.

    Mao’s famously declared that guerillas must swim like fish in the sea of people to survive; the LTTE took this to the extreme, emptying the sea in one place and carrying the captive sea to the Wanni!

    BLOODY Indian HYPOCRITES … offering excuses for the deaths of civilians in their own situations, but accusing Sri Lanka of war crimes in exactly similar situations!

    This is why India must be PERMANENTLY SHUT OUT of involvement in Sri Lanka’s internal matters! Indians are HYPOCRITES INCARNATE waving DOUBLE STANDARDS!

    …………………………………………..
    Double standards in the name of human rights
    NewIndianExpress.com
    August 8, 2012

    The lexicon defines human rights as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled. In India human rights mean different things to different people, particularly for human rights activists. If a woman or child is caught in a crossfire between the police and an insurgent group or the Maoists, they shout about the enormity of human rights violations in India. It does not matter to them that the shrillness of their protest is grossly disproportionate to the excesses of the police, given the inhospitable terrain in which they operate.

    A report from Odisha highlighted the routine manner in which those protesting against the POSCO steel project used school children as human shields against the police. Nothing surprising as it is the standard practice of the separatists in Kashmir, insurgents in the Northeast and the Maoists in what was once known as the Dandakaranya area in central India to position themselves behind women and children when they attack the police. Perchance something untoward happens to the human shields, human rights activists pounce upon policemen, little realising that the khaki-clad, too, have families and emotions.

    Human Rights Watch, an international body, has in a recent report highlighted how the Maoists have been targeting civil society organisations. They are there to provide such services as education and healthcare, but the Maoists see in them a threat to their own existence. They do not want any development in the area for they know only too well that once the people are educated and develop aspirations, they would stop listening to them. What the Maoists, therefore, do is to brand anyone offering social service in the area as police informers and hound them out of the area. If anyone tries to resist them, he or she will be dealt with in the most brutal manner. However, that is not a human rights violation because the perpetrators are not policemen. What a tragedy!

  17. Ananda-USA Says:

    Bravo! FINALLY some action to DEBUNK the 40,000 deaths figure in the last phase of Eelam war IV!

    But MORE THAN THAT, this census will identify ALL CASUALTIES of LTTE terror ISLANDWIDE!

    However, the GOSL should be careful to CROSS-VERIFY this Census Information provided by Eelamist Tamil households …. for Manipulating Records and Disseminating False Information in their Forte’!

    …………………………..
    Island-wide household census will determine number affected by conflict

    By Franklin R. Satyapalan
    Island.lk
    November 23, 2013

    The Secretary to the Ministry Public Administration and Home Affairs Bandara P. Abeyakoon said the government launched an internationally-recognized island-wide household census to ascertain first-hand persons affected by the conflict, gone missing and feared dead or disabled after 1982.

    He said that in the past, a similar household census was conducted ad hoc and as a result there were conflicting reports that some 40,000 to 60,000 persons went missing during the conflict.

    He said that the Director General of the Department of Census and Statistics D. C. A. Gunawardena has been tasked to implement this project.

    Gunawardena said that he was carrying out the instructions of the Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga who serves as Chairman of the Task Force to implement the Lessons Learnt Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) recommendations to set in motion a scientifically designed household census

    He said that the objective of this island-wide household census is to ascertain the number affected after 1982 and also gather first-hand information on the scale and circumstances of death and injury of civilians as well as all damage to property during the conflict.

    The census, funded by the government and the department, was tasked to conclude its work before the December 20, 2013 deadline.

    He said that his departmental officers at the district level were summoned to Colombo for workshops conducted at the Hector Kobbekaduwa HARTI auditorium so that the trainers could train Divisional Secretariats and Grama Niladhari officers to carry out the census scientifically.

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