|Wednesday, 9 February 2005|
by Asanga Warnakulasuriya
Ex-Tamil United Liberation Front (TULF) member of Ampara district, Ariyanayagam Chandra Nehru critically injured in Monday night's ambush which killed LTTE Eastern leader Kousalyan, succumbed to his injuries yesterday.
Chandra Nehru was travelling with Kousalyan after attending an LTTE meeting at around 8 p.m. in Poonai when they were attacked, Welikanda police said.
This brings the death toll of the ambush to six. Apart from Kaushalyan, LTTEers Nithimaran, Vinodhan, Kamalan and Kumanan were also killed in the attack allegedly carried by a group belonging to the Karuna faction.
Three other LTTE cadres who had provided escort to Nehru's vehicle who are in critical condition were transferred from the Polonnaruwa Hospital to the Colombo National Hospital yesterday.
It was also reported that Kaushalyan was accompanied by Vinothan, Puhalan, Senthamil and Nithimaran from Kilinochchi to Batticaloa.
Meanwhile responding to LTTE allegations of army involvement in the attack, Military spokesman Brigadier Daya Ratnayake denied any involvement. He said the LTTE had not informed about their meeting in the Wanni to the Army.
In the past, Army had shown concern about the LTTE leaders' safety and had even provided vehicles and choppers on request, the Brigadier said.
It is the LTTE's responsibility to inform the Army of any threats from the paramilitary groups, the Brigadier added.
According to the Tamilnet website, Nehru elected to Parliament at the December 2001 general elections was the eldest son of Arappor Ariyanayagam, a senior leader of the Tamil rights movement.
Govt condemns killings
The Government yesterday condemned the killing of six persons, including the LTTE political head for Ampara-Batticaloa, Kousalyan and former MP Ariyanayagam Chandra Nehru and injuring three others including two Police Constables in the Welikanda incident.
A government media release states: "While these killings are a violation of the Ceasefire Agreement, their timing is also clearly calculated to disrupt the positive post-tsunami atmosphere of increasing co-operation between the Government of Sri Lanka and the LTTE on humanitarian issues.
The Government calls on all concerned to prevent further violations of the ceasefire gravely risking a return to conflict and instead, to support the peace process and move ahead."
Produced by Lake House