Colombo issued diplomatic passport to Karuna- paper
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 07 November 2007, 15:54 GMT]
Sri Lanka weekly, Morning Leader, in Wednesday edition, alleged that Sri Lanka violated norms of international diplomatic behavior by directing the British Embassy in Colombo to issue a visa in a false diplomatic passport to the leader of TMVP paramilitary group, Karuna, facilitating his escape to the United Kingdom.
"It has been further revealed that Karuna was issued a valid British visa in the name of Kokila Gunawardena by the High Commission in Colombo on September 5 on a recommendation by Sri Lanka’s Foreign Ministry.
"The Morning Leader investigation revealed that the Foreign Ministry had sent a Third Party Note to the British High Commission in Colombo together with a number of passports recommending visas for a group of persons to attend a climate change conference in Britain and included in the set of passports was a diplomatic passport in the name of Kokila Gunawardena.
"Gunawardena was recommended for the visa as an official representing a department coming under the Environment Ministry of JHU’s Champika Ranawaka," the paper said.
The paper added that "Karuna travelled to Britain on the passport which was in the name of Kokila Gunawardena and landed at the Heathrow airport on September 18."
Meanwhile, Muraleetharan alias Karuna was detained in U.K. last Friday in a combined operation by immigration officials and the Metropolitan police. His wife and three children are also understood to be in UK, according to reports.