Thenmaraadchi IDP families seek resettlement in their villages
[TamilNet, Tuesday, 14 July 2009, 05:10 GMT]
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPS) welfare organizations in Jaffna peninsula sent an appeal Monday to Sri Lanka Government authorities and to several International Humanitarian Organizations requesting the immediate resettlement of the IDP families displaced from Thenmaraadchi due to Sri Lanka Army (SLA) offensives in 1999, in their own villages, sources in Jaffna said. SLA continues to deny permission for the resettlement though the villages have been cleared of landmines, claiming that the villages are within its High Security Zone (HSZ), the appeal said.
170 families from Thangki’lappu, 150 families from Maravanpulavu and 250 families from Kaithadi and Naavatkuzhi, all of them famers, were displaced by the SLA in 1999.
However, in the peace period, only 35 families from Maravanpulavu and 200 families from Kaithadi and Naavatkuzhi were allowed to resettle in their villages.
5000 acres of paddy fields in the above area presently occupied by the SLA produced half the needs of Jaffna district, now lie unattended, the appeal said.
When the IDP families were allowed to resettle in 2004 in the first stage of resettlement it was assured that the rest of the IDP families would be resettled soon.
But so far neither the government nor the SLA has taken any constructive steps to fulfil the assurance.
There is no danger of landmines in the area as thousands of their cattle move about freely in the area and the SLA has vacated from these villages which it claims are within its HSZ, the appeal said.
Besides, Nu’naavil road and Thangki’lappu road remain closed by the SLA for the past ten years and the people from these areas have to travel many miles to reach their destinations.
The opening of these roads to public use is necessary for resettlement, the appeal further said.