2ND LEAD (Corrections)
Paramilitaries abduct 35 children in Batticaloa
[TamilNet, Friday, 07 July 2006, 12:07 GMT]
Paramilitary cadres, Thursday abducted more than 35 underage youths from the villages of Thivuchenai, Karuppalai, Sorivil and Sevanapitty in Batticaloa district, residents said. Parents of the abducted children, gripped by fear and insecurity, are afraid to make complaints to the police or human rights watchdogs, a Grama Sevaka official said. Tension prevails in the interior villages of Batticaloa district.
More than 125 underage Tamil youths were abducted by the paramilitary Karuna Group, in June 2006, from the villages of Valaichenai, Kiran, Santhiveli, Pethalai, Vinayakapuram, Kannakipuram, Pattiyadichenai and Kalkuda in Batticaloa, with Sri Lankan Army (SLA) support.
UNICEF, in a statement released from their Colombo office on 22 June, had called for immediate action to halt the abduction and forced recruitment of children by the Karuna group.