Sri Lanka’s envoy to Havana has been rushed to neighbouring Venezuela following reports of a pro-Tamil Tiger build up in that South American nation, a senior official said yesterday.
The envoy, Tamara Kuliyanayagam, is reported to have met senior Venezuela officials in Caracas and discussed several matters relating to the problem, External Affairs Secretary Romesh Jayasinghe said.
However the outcome of the visit would be known only when the ambassador returned to Havana, he said.
The latest development in Caracas comes following the creation of a “Provisional Transnational Government of Tamil Eelaam (PTGTE)’ on May 2 in several European countries and elsewhere.
“It is widely believed that this PTGTE has been extended to South America. We will have more details when we receive a full report from our ambassador,” Mr. Jayasinghe said.
Meanwhile, other Sri Lankan envoys have been alerted to counter the PTGTE threat posed by front groups of the Tamil Diaspora.
Meanwhile, in a related development Sri Lanka’s European Union Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha called on European leaders not to provide any political or symbolic support to the PTGTE, saying it was made up of Tamil Tiger members and activists.
He made the appeal when he addressed the “2010 Diplomatic Security Conference on the Terrorism Situation and Trends in the EU” in Brussels on Tuesday. Mr. Ariyasinha claimed that several groups such as the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), the Coordinating Committee of Tamils in France (CCTF), the Tamil Youth Organisation (TYO), the Tamil Women’s Organisation (TWO), the Tamil Arts and Cultural Organisation (TKCO), and the British Tamil Association (BTA) were all front groups of the LTTE.
He said a large number of Tamils had entered Western countries through illegal channels and were trying to keep the pot boiling fearing they would otherwise lose their asylum status and be sent back to Sri Lanka.
On May 2 the PTGTE met in several foreign countries including France, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, England and Canada and decided to set up an advisory committee to work for the interests of Tamils in Sri Lanka.