"Stop arms, promote peace", MP tells US officials
[TamilNet, Friday, 03 August 2001, 23:09 GMT]
"The war in Sri Lanka is escalating because countries that say that there should be a political solution to the island's ethnic conflict are providing arms and money to the government here. Some are even training the Sri Lankan army troops. These governments should stop giving military aid to Sri Lanka and exert pressure on it to seek a negotiated settlement to the problem", said Selvam Adaikalanathan, MP for the Vanni and the leader of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation, speaking to US embassy officials who called on him Friday at his official in Colombo.
The US army Special Forces, US Navy SEALS and the USAF regularly conduct training programs with the Sri Lankan security forces. The British army also provides training and equipment for the Sri Lanka army.
"Foreign governments are generally silent about the injustices that are being perpetrated against the Tamils in Sri Lanka. I do not see these governments criticising the Sri Lankan government nor do I find them urging it strongly to solve the conflict", the Vanni MP told the US officials.
"The Liberation Tigers would not have attacked the Katunayaka airport if the Sri Lankan government had reciprocated the unilateral ceasefire they declared in December last year. The fact that the Tigers have not launched any major offensive in the North and East shows that they are still keen to begin peace talks. The Sri Lankan government should avail itself of this situation".
"The war increases the suffering of the Tamil people every day. If this suffering continues all the Tamil people will eventually rise for a separate state. Therefore the onus of solving the problem is with the Sri Lankan government. The islandís economy is in deteriorating everyday. Therefore foreign governments, particularly the US, should stop providing military assistance to Sri Lanka", the MP told the US embassy officials.