SLMM head witnesses army harassing Elilan

[TamilNet, Thursday, 13 January 2005, 14:32 GMT]
Monitors of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) led by their head Major General (Retd) Trond Furuhovde personally came to the rescue of LTTE Trincomalee district political head Mr.S.Elilan when the latter was stopped by the Sri Lanka military police at Kaddaiparichchan army camp Thursday around noon for about thirty minutes for failing to get down from his vehicle and showed his identity and his baggage at the checkpoint. This incident took place after about one hour Mr.Elilan complained to SLMM head about the harassment by army during the talks SLMM head held with LTTE Trincomalee district military commander Colonel Sornam, sources said.

SLMM head Major General Trond Furuhovde with Mr.Elilan

About two hour talks held at the LTTE political secretariat in Sampoor, which is located in the LTTE, controlled Muttur east. Mr.Helge Lyberg, acting head of the SLMM in Trincomalee participated in the talks. Mr.Sanjai, Head of the Thamileelam Resurgence Forum also was present, sources said

At the talks Mr.Elilan complained to SLMM head that he is harassed by army personnel at Kaddaiparichchan checkpoint and other sentry points in the government controlled when he is engaged in political activities according to the conditions laid down in the ceasefire agreement, sources said.

Mr.Elilan further told the SLMM head that he was detained at the Kaddaiparichchan army camp checkpoint once for about two hours though he identified him as the Trincomalee district political head, sources said.

He said army officials participated in talks with the LTTE organized by the SLMM express friendly gesture towards LTTE cadres. " However troops on the ground are adopting hostile attitude towards our cadres. Hence we are not in a position to sit and talk with SLA officials with smiles, " Mr.Elilan told SLMM head.

" You can imagine the fate of ordinary LTTE cadres in the hands of the government troops if Elilan is harassed in this way," pointed out Colonel Sornam to SLMM head.

SLMM Trincomalee district acting head Mr.Helge Lyberg
At the conclusion of the talks, Mr.Elilan left Sampoor to attend an important discussion scheduled to be held Thursday evening at Killinochchi with the LTTE leadership. When he arrived at the checkpoint of the Kaddaiparichchan army camp to enter government controlled area, his vehicle was stopped by the military police and instructed Mr.Elilan to get down and show his baggage though he identified him as the Trincomalee district political head. However the military police insisted that Mr.Elilan should get down from his vehicle. At this juncture SLMM head with his associates arrived at the site in two vehicles. Mr.Helge Lyberg got down from his vehicle and went to the military police and questioned why they were not allowing Mr.Elilan to proceed. Military police replied that Mr.Elilan was refusing to get down and show his baggage.

Mr.Lyberg told the military police to be courteous with Mr.Elilan after he identified him as the political head of the district, sources said.

Thereafter the military police checked the baggage of Mr.Elilan while he was being seated in the vehicle. Mr.Elilan left after about half an hour delay to Wanni from Kaddaiparichchan army camp, which is located on the border dividing the areas controlled by government troops and LTTE in the Muttur divisional secretariat division, sources said


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