Hartal in the East for the second day

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 22 July 2003, 20:54 GMT]
The hartal (general shutdown) observed on Monday in the Batticaloa and Ampara districts continued for the second day Tuesday, and normal life came to a standstill again, sources said.

The hartal was called to protest the continuing arrests of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam cadres in recent weeks and the killing of Mr. V. Paraneetharan (18) in Puttur, the sources said.

Meanwhile, sources said that 3 youths in Sunkankerny, 30 km to the north of Batticaloa town, were attacked by the Sri Lanka Army personnel on Monday night and admitted to the Valaichenai hospital, sources said.

Following such attacks on the public by Sri Lanka Army on Monday in Valaichenai, 32 km to the north of Batticaloa town, the public on Tuesday gathered on the streets in Karuvankerny and Sunkankerny and blocked the SLA vehicles from moving. The SLA personnel then withdrew from the areas where the public had gathered, but tension prevailed, sources said.

The sources said that a high level meeting between the Sri Lanka Army officials and the LTTE was planned to contain the situation.

In Komari in the Ampara district, the public felled trees and blocked the roads, and even the SLA vehicles couldn’t travel, sources said. When some people in Komari burnt tires and tension ensued between the public and the Special Task Force personnel in the area, the LTTE’s political leader in Komari, Mr. Yoganamby, visited the area and brought the situation under control, the sources said.

The hartal was observed even in the Muslim-dominated areas in Ampara, and the Kalmunai common market did not open, sources said.


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