LTTE rescues Tamil children exploited by Kuchchaveli fishermen

[TamilNet, Saturday, 04 September 2004, 17:15 GMT]
Trincomalee district political secretariat of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) recently handed over six Tamil boys who are below 18 years of age to the representatives of the International Committee of Red Cross (ICRC) to be handed over to their Batticaloa homes of their parents. LTTE cadres rescued these boys when they fled from fish wadiyas run by Sinhalese businessmen in Kalliravu in Kuchchaveli division in Trincomalee district due to harassment, sources said.

Sinhalese fishermen who run fish wadiyas in the costal areas in the north of Trincomalee district from Nilaveli to Kuchchaveli employ underage Tamil boys to make dry fish and other labour related to fish sale and preservation. These businessmen prefer Tamil boys from poor families as they are prepared to work for very low wages.

These boys are not allowed to go away as the businessmen fear they would not return because of hard work for more than eighteen hours a day, sources said.

At Kalliravu in Kuchchaveli division Sinhalese businessmen own several wadiyas that employ underage Tamil children. Last week some Tamil boys fled from few wadiyas unable to tolerate the harassment. LTTE cadres encountered six of them wandering without food and brought them over to the LTTE Trincomalee political secretariat, sources said.

LTTE Trincomalee political head Mr.S.Elilan contacted the ICRC in Trincomalee about the six boys and later handed them to the ICRC representatives. ICRC made necessary arrangement to reunite the boys with their parents, sources said.


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