THE AUSTRALIAN SAYS THE INDIAN GOVERNMENT FEARED AN ATTEMPT ON THE LIFE OF MANMOHAN SINGH BY THE TAMIL TIGERS
By Walter Jayawardhana
The Indian government feared an attempt on the life of the Indian Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh by the Tamil terrorists Liberation Tigers of
Tamil Eelam and has already deployed warships and guided missile destroyers
to protect him when he arrives in Colombo, the Australian reported.
"Given the Tigers' track record, there has to be serious apprehension
about their ability to launch some sort of attack on the summit, and
we're doing everything possible to ensure that does not happen,"
The Australian quoted a senior official in New Delhi as saying last
The newspaper specifically said the deployment of warships etc., which
reportedly involves Indian air force helicopter gunships patrolling
the skies of the Sri Lankan capital, comes amid fears that Tamil Tiger
terrorists are planning an attack on the Indian Prime Minister while
he is at the summit of the eight-nation South Asian Association for
The South Asian Summit members India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh,
Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Nepal and Bhutan in what will be the most high-profile
international meeting to be held in Sri Lanka for many years.
The unprecedented deployment of warships and an airstrike capacity
follows a visit to Sri Lanka by India's National Security Adviser, MK
Narayanan, to assess the threat potential at the summit, the Australian
The Tamil Tigers are notorious for carrying out suicide bombings, and
were responsible for the assassination of then Indian Prime Minister
Rajiv Gandhi in 1984.
Theterrorist group, which is fighting for a Tamil homeland, has an
airstrike capacity and sea divers who have launched suicide missions.
Tiger aircraft have attacked strategic targets in Colombo, including
the international airport.
The summit, for which preparatory sessions are due to begin next week,
is proving a security nightmare, especially for Indian officials seeking
to protect Dr Singh. It was reported last night that the contingent
of the country's crack Special Security Group, which provides security
for Dr Singh, will be "much larger" than usual while he is
In any event, Dr Singh's attendance at the summit depends on his Government
surviving Tuesday's make-or-break vote in the New Delhi parliament on
India's nuclear deal with Washington.
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