Ilankai Tamil Sangam

Association of Tamils of Sri Lanka in the USA

Petition to the EU Countries and other Nations by the European Tamils Initiative for Peace

Dear Sirs,

Re: The EU decision declared by the current EU Presidency preventing the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam delegations visiting EU Member States, over murder of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and many others

We wish to express our disappointment and register our protest against the EU preventing LTTE members visiting member states of the EU.

Through this decision the EU is not allowing the Tamils to express their grievances to the EU community and is giving preference to the Sinhalese to carry on with their one-sided propaganda regarding the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka.  The Sinhalese interpret the Tamil conflict as terrorism in their propaganda, which is not true. 

If the EU is interested in solving the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka, the EU must treat both parties (the Sinhalese Government and the Tamil people) equally.  Only then is peace possible in Sri Lanka. 

It is premature and a violation of the rule of law by mature democratic leaders of the west to be jury and judge to pass a verdict before the due process of law taken to investigate, find, convict and sentence the murderer of Laksman Kadirgamar.

Let us review the sequence of events that the European Tamils have been diligently observing in Sri Lanka in the past five years while awaiting for a sustainable peace for the island of Sri Lanka, formally known as Ceylon.  The LTTE initiated the cease-fire, but Pres. Kumaratunge's government rejected it.  When Ranil Wickramasinghe came to power and became Prime Minster, he welcomed and accepted the LTTE’s decision and went to six rounds of peace talks.  The two parties signed the Cease-Fire Agreement in 2002.  The LTTE has already taken steps and demonstrated their commitment to the peace process and their willingness to accept a Federal Power-Sharing Solution to the on-going ethnic conflict.  Sinhalese nationalist such as the JVP and the JHU, however, are adamant and not willing to share any power with the Tamils.

Lakshman Kadirgamar was shot on September 13th night and died the next day morning at 1.30 am.  It was reported by Captain Manatunga, head of his security, to a magisterial inquiry that there were five security personnel around the pool and at Mr. Kadirgamar's home.  Manatunga said he heard the shots, returned fire and then with the other guards took the Minster to the national hospital.

If this is true, why was no effort made to catch the killers immediately?  What was Manatunga's immediate action on this matter as the head of the security personnel?

Sri Lankan Police raided Thalayasingam’s house, "the house where the shot was fired" only after two hours following the incident.  This means that the police gave enough time for the murderer to clear any evidence and to escape.  The evidence produced in the courts could have been planted by the raiding party or some other interested party during that two hour time period

President Chandrika Kumarathunga, in her statement regarding the murder of Laksman Kadirgamar, said, "Lakshman Kadirgamar was felled by political foes opposed to the peaceful transformation of conflict and who were determined to undermine attempts towards a negotiated political solution to the ethnic conflict."– Asian Tribune 13 Aug. 2005.  Her comment is particularly significant as the president is well aware of the entrenched opposition to the peace process and the Tamils inside the military, as well as the hostility of the JVP, which quit the ruling coalition in June over her decision to sign an aid agreement with the LTTE.

The Sunday Times' political editor, who has high-level political connections, reveled that Kumaratunga had come under sharp behind-the-scenes criticism from the JVP for failing to blame the LTTE.  "How can I blame the LTTE? I  am the president and I must have some evidence before I say such a thing," an exasperated Kumaratunga told a ministerial colleague.  Yet that evening (August 14) she appeared on national television and declared that the LTTE was responsible – without offering a shred of evidence.

From the above you will understand how the leading politicians - even the president - are forced to dance according to demands of the Sinhala chauvinist parties like the  JVP, JHU, etc.

It is reported that President Kumaratunga warned Lakshman Kadirgamar not to have any meeting with the JVP leaders without her knowledge.  In spite of the warning Lakshman Kadirgamar created a close relationship with JVP when president was out of the country, because he felt that his political carrier would come to an end when the president’s political term ends.  Kadirgamar planned to continue his political carrier with JVP and JHU’s support, to which the president was opposed.

Within hours of Foreign Minster Kadirgamar being killed, the Inspector General of Police, Chandra Fernando, announced that the LTTE was responsible for this murder.  On Saturday morning this 'news' appeared in Reuters.

How is it possible for Fernando to announce this message without any investigation?

The next accusation was by Dr. Jayantha Dhanapala, Secretary General of Sri Lanka’s Peace Secretariat.  Well before any investigation, he rushed to charge the LTTE to damage the reputation of the LTTE among the international community.

Let us examine the political analysis of this assassination and see who will benefit by it.

The LTTE was observing the cease-fire agreement under the guidance and assistance of Norway, for the last 3 ˝ years with immeasurable patience to prove their willingness to accept a peaceful solution to the ethnic problem through a Federal Power-sharing solution which includes the following:

1. Recognition of the Tamils as a Nation

2. Recognition of an identified homeland for the Tamils

3. Recognition of the Tamils' right of Self-determination

The whole world knew about the LTTE's stand.  Most of the world’s leading politicians appreciated and supported the LTTE’s stand on a Federal solution.

The JVP and the JHU could have hired the underground murderers to carry out this assassination to sabotage the peace effort.  Their aim is to put blame on the LTTE and to show the world that the LTTE is not for peace, that they are only terrorists, and to gain support from the Sinhala public to grab political power.

The police have arrested several Tamils on suspicion, but until today they have been unable to get any productive evidence to prove that this murder was carried out by the LTTE or anybody else. 

When UK’s Scotland Yard’s intelligence offered help to investigate the murder of FM (Kadirgamar), this assistance was refused.  Why?

Has the President taken similar actions in the many other political murders in Sri Lanka?

Why did not President Chandrika take stern action as agreed in the CFA to disarm Paramilitary groups working under the guidance of Sri Lankan Armed Forces?  Why did the President and the leading Sri Lankan politicians support the underground murderers to operate freely under the instruction and guidance of the Sri Lankan Army?  E.g.:

  • The murders of leading lawyer Kumar Ponnampalam, respected journalist and military analyst 'Taraki', D. Sivaram, Chandra Nehru, a Human Rights worker of the NorthEast and a former Member of Parliament, the LTTE’s political leader Kausalyan for Batticoloa and Amparai and many others who have been killed by the underground murderers sponsored by politicians or Paramilitary groups working under the guidance of the armed forces of Sri Lanka.
  • At the rehabilitation camps run by the Sri Lankan Government, 26 Tamil children were murdered and another 14 were seriously injured by the inmates and the village mob, who were set up by the prison officers with the understanding of the police, because the police were watching and enjoying the killings, rather than protecting the innocent children from the thugs and murderers.

Therefore, we, the European Tamils Initiative for Peace, request the EU presidency to withdraw this one-sided and partial statement with immediate effect and inform the EU presidency that it has apportioned blame before the due process of law and has indicated that the Norwegian Government facilitation to the Peace Process between Sri Lankan Government and the LTTE is in danger of failure.  In order to save the Cease-Fire and Peace Process, we request the following to be undertaken by the EU Presidency:

  • To remove the temporary ban on LTTE delegations visits to EU member states
  • Not to place LTTE on the EU list of terorist organisations to follow the UK and USA lists.
  • To treat both parties to the peace process equally
  • To impress upon the Sri Lankan Government to implement the Post- Tsunami Operational Management Structure joint mechanism
  • To impress upon both parties to resume dialogue to take forward the peace process
  • To impress upon both parties to implementate the Cease Fire Agreement fully
  • To encourage Public Inquiries into the Killings of all Tamil politicians, Human Rights activists, Journalists and all civilians during the current cease-fire.

We place this petition in good faith before you to encourage you to take immediate steps to act on all our requests without fail and inform us of your actions so that we will have some hope for peace in Sri Lanka.

European Tamils Initiative for Peace

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Posted October 11, 2005