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Human Rights monitors, peace activists and LTTE

Human Rights Watch, based in New York, after a fact finding mission to the North of Sri Lanka for 10 days released a report on the February 20 titled, “War on the Displaced”.

As usual, the report has pointed the finger at the Government and Security Forces and noted that the Government Forces had launched indiscriminate artillery attacks on civilians trapped with the LTTE. They have added, that the Sri Lankan forces are shelling hospitals and so called safe zones and slaughtering the civilians there.


Security Forces personnel taking care of the Vanni displaced

It is an open secret that Human Rights Monitors and Peace Activists are either sponsored or get generous donations from the LTTE, or from those on the sidelines who wish to see a divided Sri Lanka or from those who have vested interests. The report has quoted 250,000 civilians trapped in the battle zone and it is a mystery how they arrived at this exact figure.

While the report has illustrated so called ‘Violations of International Law’ by the government and security forces it had not highlighted the use of civilians as human shields and the use of civilians and children as fighters on the battle front by the LTTE.

Human Rights Monitors and Peace Activists are active only in countries like Sri Lanka which is fighting against a brutal terrorist organisation that invented and introduced the ‘suicide jacket’ and not in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq or Gaza. In 2004, when the US Forces were abusing and sexualling humiliating detainees in the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq it was the Independent News Media which made them public and not Human Rights Monitors or Peace Activists.

In contrast to the Human Rights Watch report, the University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) gave an impartial account on the Sri Lankan situation to the IANS News Service. While the H.R. Report demanded a cease fire and peace talks, the UTHR (Jaffna) observed, “... Presently, the indications we have are that the people want an end to the war but are wary of peace talks and cease fires with the LTTE... Previous peace talks had only given oxygen and a free run to the LTTE...” Referring to the ruthless behaviour of LTTE cadres and shooting of escaping civilians the UTHR (Jaffna) commented “... generally the behaviour of the soldiers at entry points has been exceptionally good...”.

Further, compared to the H.R. Watch report , the UN Under Secretary General for Humanitarian Affairs who visited Sri Lanka last week said that he saw that people in the welfare centres were well looked after being provided with meals, medicines and facilities.

Human Rights Monitors and Peace Activists should note that it is the people of Sri Lanka who had gone through the brutal atrocities of the LTTE for nearly three decades.

They would like to see an end to the war without giving breathing space to the Tigers as the people are wary of peace talks and cease fires as observed by the University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna).

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