Hidden hand behind murder of disabled cadres- LTTE
[TamilNet, Monday, 26 April 2004, 14:11 GMT]
“The murder of our disabled cadres is clearly the work of criminal elements that are working with the Sri Lanka army. I have requested the SLMM to arrange an early meeting with the SLA to discuss this matter. I hope this would be the last incident of this sort. No one could have gone in a van with arms at midnight in the direction of Vavunathivu without the SLA’s knowledge. There are no jungles in these parts to hide a van and armed men”, said Mr. Kousalyan, head of the political division of the Liberation Tigers for the Batticaloa-Amparai district.
“This is an act of utter cowardice intended to create confusion so that anti-social elements working with the army could cover up their deep penetration operations against us”, an LTTE military officer in Batticaloa said.
He denied a report in a Sunday paper published in Colombo that some LTTE troops were wounded in a clash with loyalists of renegade commander ‘Karuna in the interior near the ‘Beirut Base’ recently.
“It is a total fabrication planted by interested parties in the Sri Lankan armed forces”, he said.
“Each and every associate of ‘Karuna’ who has any knowledge of the interior and is capable of planning and carrying out attacks has come back to us. Hence we know that stories like this are being planted in the Colombo press to create conditions for the resumption of the SLA’s deep penetrations operations against us”, the LTTE military officer remarked.
The armed group which came in a van around 11.30 p.m. Sunday night shot dead three sentries at the LTTE’s check point on the Vavunathivu – Aayithiyamalai Road, about 1.5 kilometres from the Sri Lanka army’s forward point near the Vavunathivu DS office.
Then they proceeded about five kilometres on the road to Mullaamunai where the LTTE’s finance division in Batticaloa maintains a general store.
There were four disabled LTTE cadres and two civilian guards at the store.
One of the LTTE cadres was paralysed below his neck, the other had lost both eyes, the third had both legs blown off in a land mine and the fourth had lost a leg in the war.
The assailants opened fire at random as they alighted from their vehicle, according to the guards. The two old men ran away and hid in the adjacent shrub. The gang then shot dead at point blank range the four disabled LTTE cadres.
The gang also damaged vehicles and motorbikes in the store before they fled the area.
The guards said they saw the van speeding down the road in the direction of the Vavunathivu SLA camp after the attack.
Members of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission in Batticaloa visited the store Monday afternoon.