News blackout for Black July
The LTTE has imposed a ban on Tamil publications entering the Batticaloa district today as it marks the 21st anniversary of Black July. The Sunday Times learns that leaflets had been distributed in the east telling newspaper agents not to allow the papers to be sold as they were highlighting news that the government was distributing compensation to those affected by the 1983 anti-Tamil riots.

Political observers said Batticaloa was a weak area for the LTTE after the Karuna revolt and the LTTE apparently did not want to allow further dilution of its support base. The leaflets said that the distribution of compensation was a move to win the hearts and minds of the Tamils. Meanwhile, the LTTE has called on the public to observe a hartal in Batticaloa today.

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