Colombo wants to create illusion of a political settlement– Karuna

[TamilNet, Saturday, 05 April 2003, 16:29 GMT]
“We should be mindful that we are living in the information age. Information technology has grown tremendously. Our information skills should be on par with this growth. The information revolution can be put to wrong uses too. It can be used to wage psychological warfare against us subtly through TV and other popular media,” said Col. Karuna, senior commander of the Liberation Tigers, addressing the opening of the offices and press of the ‘Thamil Alai’ (Tamil Wave) newspaper in Kokkaddicholai, 12 kilometres southwest of Batticaloa, Saturday.

LTTE Karuna and Ramesh
The first issue of the Thamil Alai newspaper was also release today. The editor of the paper is senior Tamil journalist, Mr. V. S Kathirkamathamby. The press, Niththi Pathipakam, is named after Mr. R. Niththiyananthan, a senior Batticaloa correspondent, who joined the LTTE in 1990 and was killed in an SLA ambush three years later.

Speaking further, the LTTE commander said: “In the Iraq war, the big powers are using the advantages of information technology to show only their side of the story. The real suffering of the people is scarcely coming out due to this”.

Tamil Alai

“I praise the journalists of Batticaloa for their courageous work during difficult times. They braved many dangers during the war to report the truth and the sufferings of our people. In the past, our people were massacred in their hundreds from Udumbankulam to Kokkaddicholai. It was only after our journalists began to expose these mass murders that the killings slowed down. The journalists of Batticaloa continued to write even at times when everyone was scared to tell the truth. This district has many experienced journalists and writers. Therefore I am confident that the Thamil Alai newspaper will grow and prosper,” he added.

nilaviniCommenting on the current state of the peace talks between the LTTE and Colombo, Col. Karuna said: “The government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) wants to talk about political settlement at the next round of talks. They are doing so because donor countries are telling them to do so. But we are firm that reconstruction, normalisation and resettlement should be discussed at the next round of talks. The GOSL is keen to talk about a political settlement now because it wants to create the illusion that the Tamil question is being resolved and thereby get aid from donor countries to feather its own nest.”

Remembering the senior Batticaloa correspondent the LTTE commander stated: “Niththiyanandan first came to interview me in Pulipainthakal in 1986. Then he became my friend. One day he said he wanted to join our organisation. But I advised him to continue his work as a journalist and serve our people. He was adamant and joined us. We took him to our leader. Afterwards Niththi came back with his advice and began work here.”

Journalists in Batticaloa and several community leaders also took part in the function along with several local commander of the LTTE.

 

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