"Election is a referendum on ISGA" - Thilak

[TamilNet, Thursday, 11 March 2004, 10:58 GMT]
Mr.S.Thilak, Trincomalee district political head of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) said Wednesday that Tamils of the northeast province should consider the April 2 general election as a referendum on the Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA) proposals and a democratic recognition for the liberation struggle, sources in Trincomalee said.

Trinco LTTE political head Thilak
LTTE Trincomalee political head Mr.Thilak. (TamilNet Library Photo)
Mr.Thilak addressed a seminar organized by the Trincomalee District University Students' Union on the role of Tamils in the forthcoming general election Wednesday evening in Trincomalee.

Mr.Thilak said: "We participated in the peace talks which commenced following the signing of the ceasefire agreement by the Government of Sri Lanka and LTTE two years ago with great expectations that the war-torn province would be reconstructed and displaced families would be resettled in their own lands and houses. In short we expected normalcy would return to the lives of Tamils.

"After two or three rounds of talks we came to know that the Sri Lanka government was not sincere in its commitments. The structure established for restoring normalcy collapsed without government support. The same fate fell on Subcommittee for Immediate Humanitarian and Rehabilitation Needs (SIHRN) which was established to rehabilitate and reconstruct the infrastructure of the province. SIHRN became defunct after about three months. LTTE withdrew from the talks that it would be a farce to continue in such exercise," said Mr.Thilak.

"Later the LTTE submitted Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA) proposal to the government after comprehensive study. Three days after LTTE submitted its ISGA proposal, the President took over three key ministries which had direct impact on the ceasefire agreement and every thing thereafter regarding peace process came to a standstill," added Mr.Thilak.

"Now Tamils are facing a general election. This is not an ordinary election. Election has come at a time when the LTTE has submitted its ISGA proposal to the government and waiting for dates to recommence talks. Therefore Tamils should clearly tell the international community and the Colombo government that we are fully backing the ISGA as a base to find a permanent political solution to the Tamil national question satisfying the legitimate aspirations of Tamils. In this context we consider the forthcoming general election a referendum on the ISGA and democratic recognition for our liberation struggle," said Mr.Thilak.


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