Shot youth was civilian - Magistrate

[TamilNet, Sunday, 12 July 1998, 23:59 GMT]
K. Thiyagarajah, Acting Magistrate, Batticaloa, pronounced that Nallaratnam Yoganathan (22), who was killed in the crossfire between the Sri Lanka Army (SLA) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in an incident on Thursday at Valaichenai, was a civilian, contrary to SLA's claim that he was an member of the LTTE, said ex-militant sources in Europe, quoting legal sources.

The incident occurred at Valaichenai, 32 km north of Batticaloa, and involved personnel of the SLA's Harbour Camp at Valaichenai, they said.

Mr. Thiyagrajah directed through the officer in charge of the Harbour Camp, that the soldier responsible for shooting Yoganathan should be produced in court yesterday. The suspect however failed to be present.

The SLA on Thursday, handed the body of Yoganathan to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) claiming that he was a member of the LTTE and requested the ICRC to despatch it to the LTTE, said the sources.

However, on the receipt of the body, the LTTE had not identified it as one its members and returned it.

Proceedings to identify the body and determine the cause of death began in the Batticaloa Courts only after the LTTE returned the body, said the sources.

 

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