STF, TELO stage intelligence gathering sweep

[TamilNet, Monday, 22 February 1999, 22:54 GMT]
The Special Task Force (STF) and the TELO paramilitary group began a joint operation this weekend to systematically interrogate all civilians suspected of having links with the Liberation Tigers in Aaraiampathi, a large densely populated Tamil village 8 kilometers south of Batticaloa.

The debriefing and documentation process that began this weekend is based on a list, prepared by the STF and the TELO, of all the families in the village from which one or more children were or currently are members of the LTTE.

The list also includes all persons in the village suspected by the STF of being sympathisers of the Liberation Tigers.

The operation has created panic in Aaraiampathi said residents.

Informed residents said the STF had carried out this survey in the villages of Thirukkovil and Thambiluvil in 1996 as a prelude to an order that all families suspected of having connections with the LTTE should leave the villages within 24 hours.

They said that they fear the same could happen in Aaraiampathy once the STF and TELO conclude their debriefing and interrogation.

Over the weekend, TELO cadres and STF commanders began visiting a large number of selected families in the village to pose the following type of questions:

1. when and under what circumstance did a son/daughter/brother/ sister join the LTTE.

2. What link does the family maintain with the particular relation in the Tigers? If none, how and why did the family lose contact with him or her?

3. What is the rank and current area of deployment of the family member who joined the Liberation Tigers?

4. Is any other family member in the LTTE or have joined it recently?

5. How many times has he or she come home since joining the Tigers?

 

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