'Liberation struggle has weathered several crises’ –Kousalyan
[TamilNet, Monday, 03 May 2004, 22:06 GMT]
“In the history of the Tamil liberation struggle, we have faced several crises, and it is as a result of weathering all those crises that the Liberation Tigers are today powerful militarily and politically,” said Mr.E. Kousalyan, the political head of the Liberation Tigers in Batticaloa-Amapai, speaking at the May Day organized jointly by the LTTE, trade unions and public organizations in the East and held at the Kaluthavalai public playgrounds Saturday, according to the Tuesday edition of Uthayan, the Tamil newspaper based in Jaffna.
Mr. Kousalyan said that the LTTE had acted fairly in dealing with the recent crisis in Batticaloa-Amparai, and that although there are some continuing problems, these would be solved soon.
Mr. T. Kangasabai, the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) MP from the Batticaloa district, presided over the May Day function.
Continuing his speech, Mr. Kousalyan said: “The May Day is held to celebrate workers’ rights worldwide. But in this country, Tamil people have faced oppression for more than 50 years. Though our people fought using non-violent methods to liberate ourselves from the oppression and suffering, the rights of our people have been denied and Tamil people were killed just for being Tamils. It was because of this that our national leader, Mr. V. Pirapaharan, started an armed struggle.
“Today, we have grown to be a conventional force that can protect the Tamil people. It is the people who made this growth possible. The people who helped us to become a military power have now given us political power and a mandate. You the people have elected us as the ‘sole representatives.’
“Despite our political and military power, the oppressive conditions against the Tamil people have not changed. We still have some distance to go in our struggle. Even as we march toward political liberation, we have to take steps to ensure progress in education and economy for the people.
“The crisis situation in the Batticaloa-Amparai district has been brought under control and normalcy has returned. Recently, our national leader met with the Tamil parliamentarians from this district, and said the success in bringing the situation under control rested solely with the people and the fighters whose commitment to ideals was unshakeable.
“Though a huge crisis has been resolved, there are still certain problems. Our fighters are strengthening their security. All divisions of the Liberation Tigers have restarted their duties.
“We hope you, the people, will understand your obligations and act accordingly. The people should remain firm in their commitment to national struggle and their loyalty to the national leadership.”
Mr. K. Pathmanathan, the Amparai district TNA MP, Mr. Senathirajah, the LTTE’s Batticaloa town political head, S. Selvendran and S. Loganathan, also spoke at the function.
Mr.S.Jeyanandamoorthy, another TNA MP from Batticaloa, also attended.