What's up, LTTE?
The LTTE's ceasefire violations since
the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) or the ceasefire agreement was
signed, reads like a never-ending list of deliberate provocations
aimed at the Sri Lankan government. Initially there were the Pongu
Thamil political programmes which continued to use provocative separatist
slogans, and of course, there was the refusal to open the A-9 highway
at the proper time. Recently there has been the sea movement of LTTE
cadres, and Anton Balasingham's
"peeping over'' Foul Point from his sea plane, to see what's
happening there, which was in clear violation of aviation regulations,
and the ceasefire agreement. There was also Balasingham's by-passing
normal immigration procedures to land his sea plane directly in Iranamadu
by circumventing entry through a regular immigration port. There was
the unloading of long range guns, which the government is refusing
to confirm, and then there was the presence of a flotilla last week
in Trincomalee in which Pottu Amman is said to have been present -
an incident which triggered a dramatic standoff which had repercussions
as far as India due to Pottu Amman's possible presence. Finally, there
was the movement of weapons across the Eastern seaboard, which was
exposed when the Navy blasted one of the boats carrying arms and ammunition.
There is a limit
to testing the patience of any government, which has pledged itself
to observe a ceasefire with a rebel group. What is the motive of
the LTTE in carrying out all of these flagrant violations of the
ceasefire process? Are these their version of what they call "confidence
building measures''? Is it also why they want the proscription on
their organization removed as one of the same measures of "confidence
Is there anything at all the international community, especially
the international players who are involved in this imbroglio, have
to say about all of these fun and games that the LTTE is upto?
have told the government that they made a mistake, and that the
Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (headed by the Norwegians) "forgot''
to inform the Sri Lankan government of LTTE movements via the Eastern
seaboard. This is a horrendous "lapse'' to say the least, and
it is definitely tantamount to a vote of no confidence on the SLMM.
But to whom does one appeal from the SLMM?
It is becoming
clearer by the hour that the LTTE is not playing by the rules, which
is not surprising at all, and that the Norwegian brokers are turning
a Nelsonian-eye to all this in the hope of not upsetting the "Peace
Process". The Prime Minister is urging the South to remain
calm amidst all this bedlam, until, he says, the LTTE is brought
to the negotiating table. But to what extent can the Southern constituency
remain quiet in the face of blatant and regular ceasefire violations
by the LTTE? If this is how the LTTE conducts itself when there
is a ceasefire agreement on, and when the world is ostensibly watching
the LTTE with an element of suspicion, what is in store for this
country when the LTTE actually begins to run a one party interim
council in the North and the East?
The LTTE stand
repeatedly has been that the organization needs to be treated as
an equal partner at the forthcoming negotiations in Thailand. But
is the LTTE qualifying for equal status by carrying out this grossly
unequal number of ceasefire violations. They are only proving to
the world that "The Boys will be Boys" and the LTTE still
a terrorist organisation.
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