SLA commander transfers paramilitary personnel in Arayampathy

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 16 January 2007, 15:57 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army 23-3 Brigade Commander Colonel Subasinghe, in an attempt to calm down the objections from the Muslims who oppose the armed passage of Karuna paramilitary personnel via Kathankudy Muslim town, after the recent violence in Arayampathy Kathankudy border, has transferred a key paramilitary operative and fellow personnel to the camps elsewhere. New paramilitary personnel have been posted the house attached to the STF camp in Arayampathy, according to Muslim representatives in Kaththankudy.

A delegation of local representatives from Kathankudy, headed by Kathankudy Urban Council Chairman UJM Mubeen, comprising the representatives of the Federation of Mosques and members of the Ulama Sabah (Islamic Theological Council) met the Commanding Officer of the SLA and Major Berty Perera, the Civil Coordinating Officer of the SLA at the Brigade Head Quarters last Saturday and voiced their concerns in the meeting that lasted for 3 hours.

Earlier, on Thursday, a group of Muslim representatives had met the Batticaloa District Secretary S. Armuainayagam, and opposed the temporary settlement of Tamil IDPs from Vaharai in Arayampathy Kathankudy border at a land that has been claimed by the Muslims after the settlement of the IDPs.

The Muslim representatives who argued that the land belonged to Muslims, referred to an undertaking made in 1977 by a former Muslim MP, Farid Meera Lebbai.

It was decided at the meeting that the land issue to be resolved locally between the trustee board of the Kandasamy temple in Arayampathy and the representatives of the federation of mosques.

Paramilitary operatives were also present at the meeting.

The Muslim representatives were opposed the armed passage of Karuna operatives via Kaththankudy and argued that any attack by the LTTE on them in Muslim area, could be misinterpreted as an attack carried out by armed Muslim youth, escalating the danger of confrontations between the paramilitary and the armed Muslim group.

Following the meeting with the GA, the Muslim representatives turned to the Sri Lanka Army hierarchy to take immediate steps to de-escalate the tense situation in their meeting with the Commanding Officer.

Meanwhile, a decapitated body of a Tamil youth, allegedly abducted by the paramilitary personnel riding in a white van, Saturday, in Batticaloa town, was dumped 5 km south in Kathankudy Police division Tuesday, invoking tension among the residents in the area.

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