Colombo's ceasefire intransigence censured

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 March 2001, 16:22 GMT]
"The Sri Lankan government can be no longer unconcerned with the safety and security and well being of the Tamil people, particularly when the other party to the conflict, the Liberation Tigers, has extended its unilateral ceasefire for another month. The safety, security and the well being of the Tamil people must no longer be subordinated to the exigencies of military strategies", Mr. R. Sampanthan, Secretary General of the Tamil United Liberation Front told Tamilnet Saturday.

Commenting on the extension of the unilateral declaration of ceasefire by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam for the fourth consecutive month, Mr. Sampanthan further said:

"The TULF has been demanding the cessation of the war for a long time".

"This has been because of the extreme suffering caused to the Tamil civilian population as a result of the continuing war".

sampanthan_r.jpg"Tamil civilian areas are devastated. For instance the city of Chavakachcheri in the Jaffna peninsula has been completely destroyed. Tamils are either killed or injured as a result of shelling and aerial bombing. The Tamil civilian population is displaced in large numbers and they suffer extreme deprivation in numerous ways".

"The Tamil civilian population has suffered for the last fifteen years. It is unjust to expect the Tamil civilians to suffer any further.

"We also reiterate that independent neutral observers monitor such ceasefire".

"We will also strongly urge the international community to contribute its mite to the evolution of a ceasefire and be of assistance in monitoring of such ceasefire".

Meanwhile, the ten-party Tamil coalition that met in Colombo Saturday to discuss the political situation consequent to the third extension of the ceasefire unilaterally declared by the Liberation Tigers on 24 December last year resolved to organise public rallies and mass demonstrations to draw the world's attention to the problems of the Tamil people.

"That the Sri Lankan government has rejected for the third time the ceasefire declared by the Liberation Tigers does not bode well for peace, for working towards an acceptable settlement to the ethnic conflict," a spokesman for the coalition told Tamilnet.

 

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