SLA imposes conditions for resettling IDPs in Mannar

[TamilNet, Thursday, 21 September 2006, 06:03 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has imposed restrictions for internally displaced families (IDP) to return to their homes located close to the Mannar public playground. SLA camp is located in the Mannar public playground. At a conference held in the Mannar district secretariat Wednesday with V.Visuvalingam, Government Agent in the chair, army officials present announced the conditions to be met by IDPs to return to their homes and to avoid any retaliation from the SLA in the event of attack on them, civil sources said.

Families had fled from their homes located near the Mannar public playground due to fear following retaliatory attacks by the SLA soldiers stationed in the Mannar public playgrounds. These IDPs have been residing with their relatives elsewhere in the area for the last two months unable to return their homes due to fear.

Hence the Mannar Citizens' Committee organized the conference Wednesday in the Mannar district secretariat to resettle these IDPs in their own houses.

SLA officials attended the conference announced that all IDPS could return to their homes if the conditions of the SLA are met. Returnees should not erect concrete walls and fences with any other materials around their premises. Only barbed wire fence would be allowed enabling SLA soldiers located in the Mannar public playgrounds to monitor movements of persons in every house occupied by the IDP family during day and night. During nights arrangements should by the occupants to light their front and rear portion of the house

SLA officials further said that occupants should not come out of their houses during nights whenever attacks targeting SLA soldiers are launched but they should be in their houses with lights on and without raising alarm. They would not be harmed if they follow the instructions issued by the SLA. SLA soldiers have been clearly instructed to provide security in emergency situation, SLA official stressed.

Occupants could come out of their houses in emergency situation during nights carrying lighted hurricane lamps. The occupants should not allow any outsider not registered in their house-hold register to stay with them. Any intimidation and threat by SLA soldiers could be brought to the notice of SLA higher authorities for taking action, SLA officials added.

The conference commenced around 9.30 a.m. continued for about two hours.

N.Jeyabalasingham, Secretary of the Mannar Citizens' Committee, committee members M.Mariyathasan Peiris and S.Ramakrishnan and several others also participated. IDPs also attended the discussion.

 

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