Civil group calls for probe into Pesalai civilian killings

[TamilNet, Monday, 23 January 2006, 20:40 GMT]
Pesalai Parish Pastoral Council and Mannar Citizen Committee through a joint memorandum Monday appealed to Sri Lanka's President Mr.Mahinda Rajapakse to order an impartial inquest into the killing of four innocent civilians including a three-year old child by soldiers of Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) on December 23, and to pay compensation to the dependants of those killed, sources said.

President of the Pesalai Parish Priest Council, Rev.Fr.Vincent Patrick, and Secretary, Mr.A.T.Masceringhe, and representative of the Mannar Citizen Committee signed the memorandum.

Mr. Emmanuel Cruz (42), Ms Emmanuel Anthonikkam Cruz (42), Ms Jude Suganthie Cruze(30), and Jude Arokiaraj Parunandu (3) were killed and burnt in this incident. Residents believe that navy sailors killed these persons and disposed the remains elsewhere. Following this atrocity remaining families in the housing scheme fled from their houses and sought refuge in the Pesalai church, the memorandum said.

"We regret that no action has been taken so far regarding these murders, to apprehend the culprits and to bring them to justice. Hence we appeal to you to order for an inquest into these deaths and to offer compensation to the dependants of the murdered civilians," the memorandum said.

A delegation comprising a group of people of Pesalai Monday afternoon handed the copies of the memorandum to the Mannar Assistant District Secretary, Ms. Mohanathan, at the District Secretariat and to the representatives of the ICRC and SLMM in Mannar at the Mannar District Secretariat.

Copies of this memorandum were also sent to the SLA Commander, Defense Ministry Secretary, envoys of Japan, USA, Britain, India, Australia, German, Norway and Canada, Mannar Bishop, President of the Bishops' Conference, SLMM, and ICRC in Geneva, sources said.

 

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