SLA harassment continues -Sampanthan

[TamilNet, Sunday, 31 March 2002, 19:57 GMT]
Tamil civilians residing in villages in the Eachilampathu division of the Trincomalee district, held by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) were being subjected to severe body checks and interrogation by government troops stationed at the Sri Lanka Army checkpoint at Mahindapura said Mr R Sampanthan, who personally witnessed these activities Saturday.

"This constitutes a serious violation of the cease-fire agreement signed by the United National Front (UNF) government and the LTTE. I will take up this matter with the proper authorities," said the Tamil National Alliance (TNA) parliamentary group leader later, addressing villagers at Eachilampathu Senbaga Vidyalayam.

Mr.Sampanthan visited Mahindapura Saturday after complaints by Tamil villagers that they had been subjected to severe body check and interrogation by government troops manning the Mahindapura SLA camp, even after the cease-fire agreement came into force. They complained of being asked to get down from buses and other vehicles and being ordered to walk through the muddy road to the other side of the checkpoint. They said army personnel were rude when questioning them

Mr.Sampanthan, Trincomalee district parliamentarian, spent Friday and Saturday visiting every village in the LTTE held Eachilampathu division. He was told of the shortcomings of the area and the needs of the villagers living there without basic medical and transport facilities.

Mahindapura, is one of the new Sinhala settlements established under the systematic Sinhala colonisation scheme, which later enabled the Sinhala dominated governments in power to carve out a separate Sinhala electorate called Seruvila in the Tamil dominated Trincomalee district. Mahindapura is the gateway to enter Tamil villages in Eachilampathu division held by LTTE from SLA controlled Sinhala settlements and to those who travel to Muttur through the Allai-Kantalai main road.


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