Civil group complains of new SLA camps in Trincomalee

[TamilNet, Sunday, 07 August 2005, 11:08 GMT]
Mr. Arthur Tveiten, Head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) in Trincomalee district held discussions with the representatives of Trincomalee District Tamil Peoples' Forum (TDTPF) and Trincomalee heads of Sri Lanka government security forces regarding the allegation by the TDTPF that Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has built new mini-camps and sentry points in the east port and its suburbs after the erection of Buddha statue near the bus stand, sources said.

TDTPF last week submitted a memorandum to the SLMM outlining the ground situation in Trincomalee and the feelings of Tamil people after the Buddha statue controversy erupted in the east port town.

The terms and conditions of the ceasefire agreement signed by the Government of Sri Lanka and LTTE clearly stipulate that no more army camps and checkpoints should be established. Contrary to this several checkpoints and mini-camps are established in the town and its suburbs after the erection of Buddha statue in a site in the midst of wine stores and meat stalls and not suitable for religious observance, TDTPF said in the memorandum,

Trincomalee town has become a garrisoned city with the presence of large number of soldiers of the SLA, Sri Lanka Navy and Police with more checkpoints and mini-camps, the memorandum said.

"Tamils are under impression that Trincomalee has been excluded from the ceasefire agreement now in force elsewhere in the northeast. Hence the TDTPF requests the SLMM to take positive steps to reduce the number of newly established checkpoints and mini-camps. Otherwise, TDTPF would be compelled to launch non-violence action," TDTPF memorandum stated.

Mr. Arthur Tveiten held talks with the TDTPF delegation in the SLMM office twice last week, TDTPF sources said. Mr.Arthur Tveiten is also reported to have held discussions with security forces regarding the allegations made by the TDTPF, sources said.


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