Muslim abducted, killed in Batticaloa north

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 09 March 2005, 07:29 GMT]
A Muslim auto rickshaw driver who was abducted Tuesday evening by unidentified gunmen in the in the general area of Kadjuwatte, about 55 kilometres north of Batticaloa, was found shot dead Wednesday morning, Sri Lanka army (SLA) spokesman Brig. Daya Ratnayaka said. He blamed the Liberation Tigers for the abduction and killing. "This is a foul murder carried out by the Sri Lanka army and its lackeys calculated to destroy cordial relations between Muslims and Tamils in the east. We will not rise to the bait", said Mr. P. Thayamohan, a senior LTTE political official in Batticaloa. A member of the Liberation Tigers was shot dead in this area in an ambush on Monday.

The driver was abducted at 2nd mile post on the Valaichenai-Vaakarai road near the State Cashew Plantation garrisoned by the SLA. The road is controlled by the SLA up to Mankerni, about three kilometres north of the Cashew Plantation garrison.

Three persons who had hired the auto rickshaw escaped and informed Valaichenai Police and Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission in Batticaloa.

The driver, Mr. Abdul Hameed Rahim, 31, was residents of Oddamavadi, a Muslim town, 34 kilometres north of Batticaloa. The passengers too are from the town.

Truce monitors recovered the auto rickshaw from the road Tuesday night. They recovered the body of the driver from the interior, near Kirumichchai Wednesday morning.

“This is a senseless and heinous murder of an innocent civilian by the Sri Lanka army and their henchman is aimed at dividing the Tamil and Muslim people. The Sinhala state wants to divide and rule our people. They are alarmed by the good rapport between Muslims and the LTTE. We knew they were planning something like this to instigate violence between Muslims and Tamils in the east from the day Mr. Thamilchelvan met Muslims leaders from the Batticaloa Amparai districts. But we are determined not to rise to the bait”, Mr. Thayamohan said.

“We are in touch with Muslim community leaders in the area. We want to preempt SLA backed agent provocateurs who may instigate trouble there”, he added.

A member of the LTTE was shot dead in an ambush in the Kirumichchai area on Monday. LTTE accused the Sri Lanka army of carrying out the attack, stating that it had proof that the ambush party returned to the SLA camp at Mankerni, near the Cashew Plantation garrison.


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