Gamini Dissanayake Murder

On 24 October 1994, the opposition candidate for presidential elections was assassinated at a political meeting in Grandpass, Colombo.

Immediately, the police accused the LTTE of murder.

A Reuters report (25 Oct 94) said, "the suicide attack was carried out by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam..." The AP report (24 Oct 94) was cleverer - it just wove into the story unrelated news about the LTTE trying to make a connection, without actually accusing the LTTE.

Barbara Crossette (New York Times 25 Oct 94) wrote an article titled, "Latest Killing of a Sri Lanka Politician Fits a Familiar Pattern", trying to implicate the LTTE.

The US State Department Country Report on Human Rights (1995) stated "the October 1994 suicide bombing that killed the United National Party's presidential candidate, Gamini Dissanayake, and 58 other people... credibly believed to be the work of the LTTE."

The police produced the detached head of a 'Tamil looking woman' as the alleged suicide-bomber.

The LTTE denied responsibility.

In an election mired by violence Dissanayake's house was bombed a few days earlier, allegedly by Sinhala thugs belonging to the government party.

No independent commission of inquiry was appointed, despite several pleas by the widow of the assassinated leader and others.

Now the son of the assassinated leader, Navin Dissanayake, has said, "I don't believe it was only an LTTE operation... My father had powerful opponents1."

In an interview with the Island [23 November 97] he said, "My mother wrote to President Kumaratunga requesting a commission... They have appointed so many commissions... but there is no desire on the government's part to probe the assassination of a presidential candidate."


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1. An interview with Navin Dissanayake, son of the assassinated Sinhala leader, published in the Island [23 Nov 1997]