2ND LEAD (Correction)

Released TRO abductees detained at Batticaloa Police Station

[TamilNet, Friday, 03 February 2006, 04:55 GMT]
The two female staff of Tamils Rehabilitation Organization (TRO), who were released on Monday by the abductors, are being held at Batticaloa Police station from 2.00 p.m. Thursday, TRO officials in Colombo said. When the two women, against threats to their safety, went to file a police report at the insistence of Government authorities, they were detained at the Batticaloa Police Station overnight against their wishes, and they are to be held at the Police station until officials of Sri Lanka Criminal Investigation Division (CID) arrive from Colombo, said TRO in a press release issued Friday.

Ms Punniyamoorthy Nadeswary and Ms Chitravel Sivamathy, two of the five pre-school teachers who were abducted by paramilitaries working with the assistance of Sri Lanka Army (SLA) on Sunday 8.00 p.m., were released unharmed and returned to their families in Batticaloa on Monday.

"Colombo has placed the lives of the remaining 8 workers in danger by its failure to alert the State structures in a timely manner to secure the release of the workers. Instead of co-operating with TRO officials and to work actively to resolve this urgent matter, Colombo is engaging in politically motivated disinformation campaign to discredit the TRO," said Arjunan Ethirweerasingam, TRO Project Consultant in Colombo, speaking to TamilNet Friday.

PDF IconUpdate on released TRO staff

"TRO wishes to categorically state that it is, despite statements to the contrary in the media from government sources, cooperating fully with the investigations being mounted by law enforcement agencies. TRO has been utilizing all of its resources to facilitate this investigation," said TRO in the press release.

Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera and the Inspector General Chandra Fernando had said Thursday that the abduction "claim was untrue."

United Nations, and several countries including the US have called for immediate release of the abducted TRO staff, and have urged the "relevant authorities to rapidly investigate these [abduction] allegations."


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