SLA relaxes travel restriction in Valikaamam North HSZ
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 24 February 2010, 02:49 GMT]
Newly appointed Sri Lanka Army (SLA) Jaffna Commander, Major. Gen. Kathurasinghe said Tuesday that travel restrictions in Valikaamam North in SLA High Security Zone (HSZ) have been relaxed so that people in Jaffna could travel freely, participating as chief guest in a Marathon race event held in Jaffna town, sources in Jaffna said. But Welfare Organizations representing Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) said that this relaxation is mainly for the benefit of Buddhist devotees from the South visiting Naakatheepa Buddhist temple in Nainaatheevu and the Saiva temples in Maaviddapuram and Keerimalai and that it has not brought any relief to the IDPs who insist on being allowed to resettle in their own houses in the HSZ.
The Marathon race was organized by a private firm in Colombo with the support of SLA and the police in Jaffna.
Major Gen. Kathurusinghe further said that he will request the President to lift all security restrictions imposed in Jaffna district in a security related meeting Thursday in Colombo.
Normalcy of life should be restored to Jaffna district just as normalcy prevails in the Southern districts, the Major said.
He also mentioned that he had served earlier in Poonakari in 1981 and serving now in Poonakari he observed that it had lost all its former lustre and added that he was determined to bring Poonakari back to its original state but was suddenly transferred to Jaffna.
Though government ministers and officers had promised to permit resettlement in Valikaamam North no one has been allowed to resettle yet, the Welfare Organizations pointed out.
The extension of some internal bus services and private vehicles being allowed into the said HSZ are for the convenience of the Buddhist devotees visiting Jaffna in their thousands daily, they added.