NPC condemns election violence and expulsion of people in Batticaloa

[TamilNet, Thursday, 01 April 2004, 15:03 GMT]
In a press release Thursday, the National Peace Council has condemned the election-related violence, intimidations and assassinations in the North-East, and the “effort to expel people of Jaffna-origin living in Batticaloa,” saying that “factional rivalries should not be solved at the expense of the people.”

The NPC said that it sought to have people in the LTTE-controlled areas provided with the right to vote. “This reflects our belief that the people must not be disenfranchised or discriminated against by the state for any reason. However, we also note that creating an atmosphere of intimidation and fear, and denying pluralism is also disenfranchising.”

The following is the full text of the NPC press release:

“The recent assassination of yet another candidate for the general election in Batticaloa is reprehensible, and together with the attempted assassination of the Government Agent for Batticaloa, who was performing his duties as the chief returning officer for the district at the General Elections, are a flagrant attempt to deny the people of their basic democratic right to a free and fair election. The National Peace Council notes with concern that these latest shootings follow three political assassinations earlier this month in the eastern part of the country involving Tamil politicians which were also reprehensible. The attempted assassination of another Tamil politician in Colombo last week appears to fall into a pattern in which the targets are Tamils from the north east who are contesting the general elections.

“These killings need to be viewed in the context of the LTTE's request to Tamil politicians of the north east that they should contest for elections under the Tamil National Alliance alone and that those who do not will be considered as traitors. In addition, the split in the LTTE due to the breakaway of its eastern leadership has added to the tensions. While the most recent victim was a candidate of the TNA, he had openly declared his allegiance for the LTTE's breakaway Karuna faction. We also note the interest of other political parties and groups to prevent people in the LTTE-controlled areas from voting, as in the east at the last General Election.

“The present election is a period of transformation in the north east, in which the different groups and parties are trying to maximise their representation in Parliament. The pattern of violence, and the information gathered, indicates that it is aimed at obtaining political advantage, taking revenge and intimidating the people. The National Peace Council unreservedly condemns all these acts of violence and intimidation, and especially the assassinations. We call on all parties involved in the elections to recognise that the plural ethnic and political composition of the north east requires a democratic election, and not an attempt to impose a particular party or view by violence. The conduct of general elections, and the pursuance of voting rights for the people, should not be seen as providing a facade of legitimacy for undemocratic rule.

“During the course of this election campaign, we have sought to have people in the LTTE-controlled areas provided with the right to vote. This reflects our belief that the people must not be disenfranchised or discriminated against by the state for any reason. However, we also note that creating an atmosphere of intimidation and fear, and denying pluralism is also disenfranchising. We are gravely concerned about the development of a new conflict based on Jaffna-Batticaloa regional identities that is being provoked by the actions of the contending factions of the LTTE, and we condemn the effort to expel people of Jaffna-origin living in Batticaloa. Factional rivalries should not be solved at the expense of the people. The National Peace Council appeals to all parties to resolve their disputes through the sole means of negotiations, in the spirit of the peace process and principles of peaceful resolution of conflicts.”

 

Latest 15 Reports
24.04.19 18:43   Photo
Unity between Eezham Tamils and Muslims key to true freedom: Exiled Sinhala academic
23.04.19 23:12   Photo
People of all walks of life victims in ‘chosen island’ of geopolitics, religious extremism
22.04.19 23:46   Photo
West influencing regime-change politics responsible for worsening situation: Fr Sakthivel
21.04.19 09:17   Photo
207 killed, 450 wounded, series of bomb blasts target churches, hotels on Easter Sunday
20.04.19 22:18   Photo
Tamil journalist released on bail fears targeted persecution by SL military
19.04.19 23:23  
Colombo closing down schools with less than 50 students tantamounts to educational betrayal
18.04.19 21:24   Photo
Sinhala colonisation escalated in Vavuniyaa North with a multitude of players backing infrastructure
17.04.19 23:18   Photo
Journalist harassed after exposing SLN surveillance on peaceful protest in Vanni
16.04.19 22:20   Photo
Uprooted Tamils in Karanthaay enter their lands in dispute with SL authority
15.04.19 23:44   Photo
Linguistic discrimination, insensitive iconography used to establish Sinhala Buddhist hegemony
14.04.19 22:43   Photo
Colombo schemes new settler colony for intruding Sinhala fishers in Mullaiththeevu
13.04.19 08:01   Photo
Tamil youth in Batticaloa irked by SL State-backed southern company bent on ilmenite mining
12.04.19 21:01   Photo
SLA deployed Tamils as human shields in 1990, activists allege mass graves in Jaffna islet
11.04.19 23:47   Photo
Assange arrest: Declaration of war against digital civil society by bandwagoning powers
10.04.19 21:25  
Tamils discriminated in demarcation of education zones in Ampaa'rai district
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=11634