SLN, SLA reject requests to fish, resettle

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 29 October 2002, 17:41 GMT]
The Sri Lanka army and Navy Tuesday refused to open the main road along the peninsula’s southeastern coast, refused to allow free access to the lagoon within the limits of the Jaffna town and rejected a request by an MP to relocate defence positions at the Tellipalai Junction to facilitate refugee resettlement.

At a conference to discuss issues related to security and resettlement in the Jaffna District Secretariat Tuesday, SLA and SLN officers also rejected a request by fishermen’s organisations to fish in the seas off Mathagal on the peninsula’s northwestern coast and Kottodai on its southeastern coast.

The government agent for Jaffna, Mr. S. Pathmanathan presided at the meeting.

Tamil National Alliance MPs Mr. Mavai Senathirajah and Gajendrakumar Ponnambalam and the Divisional Secretaries of Tellipalai, Kayts and Maruthankerni took part in the meeting. The SLA was represented by Maj. Gen. Ratnasabapathy.

Mr. Senathirajah MP asked the SLA to move its camps at Tellipalai Junction 600 metres away from the area to the Post Office Road. Maj. Gen. Ratnasbapathy turned down the request.

Representatives of the fisheries society of Oorikkaadu asked that fishing be permitted in the seas off the coast between Karainagar and Mathagal. The SLN officer who attended the meeting rejected the request.

He suggested that fishermen could fish in the sea beyond the Mathagal coast under Navy supervision. The representatives of the fisheries societies refused to accept the suggestion.

Maj. Gen. Ratnasabapathy said that the SLA has already informed the Liberation Tigers that it cannot open the Pt. Pedro –Maruthankerni Road, the main artery for the villages on Jaffna’s southeastern coast.

The Liberation Tigers urged Colombo last month to reopen the road to help displaced people resettle in the region.


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