Tuesday, 23rd September 2014

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TNA and LTTE leaders abroad are culpable for war crimes

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-NGO Guru Jehan Perera

LTTE leaders abroad should be held responsible for human rights violations committed during the war, Executive Director, National Peace Council (NPC), Dr. Jehan Perera said on Friday.
Speaking to The Nation on the allegations faced by Sri Lanka, Dr. Perera pointed out that LTTE leaders including Rudrakumaran should be held responsible for crimes committed by the outfit during the war. “They should have pressurized the LTTE to release the people in Wanni to avert human casualties. They gave the impression that the people were in Wanni on their own will, which has now been revealed not true,” he said.

In addition he also said former LTTE leaders who were in the country should also be prosecuted. “There are LTTE leaders, some of whom are working directly and indirectly with the government. They should be held responsible too,” he said.

 Dr. Perera pointed out that while the UN Human Rights Council resolution seemed balanced, the message carried across by the likes of Channel 4, members of the Tamil diaspora and international human rights organizations had placed the government on negative light. “The UN HRC has held both the government and the LTTE responsible for human rights violations,” he said.

 On the Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Dr Perera said that if the TNA knew that the LTTE was holding civilians hostage and pretended they were not, then the TNA too would be culpable.  He agreed, when the question was put to him, that there was no way the TNA could not have been aware of the fact: ‘The TNA, in the very least, is guilty of crimes of omission’.

“The government should have said that it was conducting a war instead of a humanitarian operation. The government could have had a better opportunity to defend itself if it had done so,” he added.

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