SLA alleges discovery of arms at Kopay Training College

[TamilNet, Saturday, 24 February 2007, 18:28 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) at Palaly announced Saturday that troopers conducting a sudden search in the premises of Kopay Training college on Friday found a T-56 type rifle concealed in the roof of the students hostel. Last week the troops claimed that telecommunication equipment and hand grenades were found in a room in a catholic church near the residence of Bishop of Jaffna. Civil society sources, however, suspect that the claims are without substance, and intended to silence the dissenting voices of the Catholic clergy and the Education officials in Jaffna.

Also, earlier SLA alleged hand grenades were found in a Hindu temple in Neervely.

SLA troopers conducting the searches have said that they discovered the items after receiving tips from the public.

However, the alleged discovery of items found during these searches, in High Security Zone (HSZ) heavily guarded by troops have raised strong suspicion among the public that the offending items were planted by the soldiers, civil sources said.

Even when Baheerathan, an undergraduate of Jaffna University was arrested recently SLA had made similar accusation alleging that hand grenades were discovered in the campus.

The SLA claims of discovering arms and ammunition in places of worship and educational constitutions have raised doubts about the validity of the accusations, civil sources in the peninsula said.

Meanwhile, SLA high command in Jaffna said that Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eeelam (LTTE) cadres are making use of the telephones in schools and the offices of Education Department

SLA has recently begun harassing the local employees of Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) delaying their vehicles at the check points for many hours and subjecting them to detailed search.

Catholic clergy, and Principals of schools and Education officials have been vocal in highlighting the disappearances and rights violations by the occupying Sri Lanka military in Jaffna in the past few months.

Civil society source in Jaffna said SLA's recent actions appear intended to silence the voices of NGO officials, Bishop of Jaffna, and the officials of the department of Education who have been criticizing the various acts of violation by the SLA troops.



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