SLA blocks LTTE political activists in Trinco

[TamilNet, Sunday, 15 August 2004, 18:45 GMT]
Soldiers of the Sri Lanka Army Sunday evening surrounded a group of political activists of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) at Mc Heyzer road in Orr's Hill, a suburb in Trincomalee town, and blocked their movement. Later they were allowed to go by the SLA at the intervention of monitors of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) in Trincomalee following a strong complaint lodged by Mr.S.Elilan, Trincomalee district political head of the LTTE, against the action of the SLA, sources said.

LTTE activists including women cadres were engaged in political activities in Orr's Hill area Sunday. Suddenly a group of SLA soldiers in the afternoon around 3 p.m. rushed to the site with heavy weapons and surrounded unarmed LTTE political activists in Mc Heyzer Road area. SLA soldiers did not allow the LTTE political activists to move away from the site, civilian sources said.

On receipt of information, Mr.Elilan contacted the SLMM Trincomalee head and lodged a strong protest against the action by the SLA. SLMM monitors rushed to the site and inquired from the SLA why they blocked LTTE political activities. SLA soldiers reportedly told the SLMM that they received information that armed LTTE cadres were moving in the area, sources said.

SLA had also reported to the SLMM that women LTTE cadres had been seen with military type waist-belts, which is in violation of the ceasefire agreement.

Mr.Elilan in strong terms told the SLMM that SLA soldiers in Trincomalee were not properly educated about the ceasefire agreement. LTTE women cadres were wearing civilian type waist belts according to an understanding reached between the SLMM and security forces and LTTE earlier. SLA's allegation that LTTE political activists were seen with arms was unfounded. Mr.Elilan also pointed out to the SLMM monitors an incident that had taken place Saturday at Nilaveli where the SLA objected to the hoisting of LTTE flag at an event. Mr.Elilan told the SLMM monitors that there was nothing in the ceasefire agreement against the hoisting of national flag of the LTTE at public events.

Mr.Elilan told the SLMM monitors that problems had arisen between the LTTE and SLA because as the latter was not well briefed about several aspects in the CFA by their superiors, sources said.


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