Tigers compelled to defend against Sri Lanka’s aggression - Thamilchelvan

[TamilNet, Tuesday, 22 August 2006, 17:20 GMT]
Responding to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse’s call for the LTTE to declare its commitment to the ceasefire, the head of the LTTE’s Political Wing, Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan said that it was the Colombo government which launched a major military offensive in Trincomalee against the Tigers and thereby triggered defensive measures by the Tigers resulting in an escalation of hostilities. "The Norwegian facilitators and the SLMM monitors are witness to the fact that Colombo deliberately chose to launch an offensive in Maavilaru despite the civil dispute being resolved peacefully," Mr. Thamilchelvan said.

"The Sri Lankan military has a long-term hidden agenda which underpinned its decision to launch a large-scale offensive with massive firepower into our territory in Muthur East," Mr. Thamilchelvan charged.

“This was evidenced in repeated airstrikes on the region for some considerable time, even before the water dispute emerged,” he added.

"Furthermore, although the Sri Lankan government claimed the purpose of the offensive was to restore the flow of water, the Sri Lankan military continued its offensive even after the gates were opened," he said.

"These actions clearly proved that Colombo had wider objectives behind its military offensive."

"And when the Sri Lankan military escalated their offensive from their Trincomalee naval base, we were forced to respond towards their launchpads for artillery fire and troop movement towards the frontline," Mr. Thamilchelvan said.

Thamilchelvan also accused Colombo of escalating its military offensive and attacking the LTTE in the Batticaloa and Jaffna districts.

"In Jaffna, heavy weapons and troop movements were observed in Eluthumadduval, Kilali, Nagarkovil and Muhamali areas throughout the day on August 11. The movement of civilian traffic was restricted to assist the Sri Lankan military buildup."

"Finally, at 5:40 p.m. that day, the Sri Lanka Army launched a major offensive towards our area across the Northern defence lines, in another major breach of the ceasefire."

"However, our fighting forces, well aware of the impending Sri Lankan offensive, were prepared to face the confrontation and defeated it," LTTE political head said.


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