SLA imposes travel restrictions on Mannaar Tamils

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 16 April 2008, 05:58 GMT]
Sri Lanka Army (SLA) has recently imposed travel restrictions on Tamils traveling to and from Mannaar. Tamils who leave Mannaar are only allowed to travel in train from Mathavaachchi while the Tamils, returning to Mannaar from other areas are filtered by their native and residential addresses and refused entry into Mannaar if they carry a National Identity Card with a residential address in South at Kaddaiyadampan SLA checkpost, located between Madu Road junction and Murungkan, on Mannaar Mathavaachchi Road. Family members are separated and refused entry, residents complain.

Mannaar District Secretary was told by the authorities in Colombo that there were no such orders issued to the military. However, the military officials at the checkpost continue the practice referring to orders from their top hierarchy, said Tamil parliamentarian Vino Nokarathalingam on Tuesday. Vanni district MP was writing a letter to Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa urging the Sri Lankan president and commander-in-chief to intervene and end the practice.

Earlier, in January, Sri Lanka Navy started photographing Tamil civilians in Mannaar. This practice was stopped after Mannaar district magistrate, T.J. Prabakaran, ordered to cease the practice of photographing people with immediate effect.

Civilians who reach Mannaar island by boat from LTTE controlled areas are also being sent to a detention centre in Naanaaddaan by the Sri Lankan forces, refusing them to stay with their relatives in Mannaar island.


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