Villagers protest over SLN retaliation

[TamilNet, Saturday, 26 February 2000, 08:18 GMT]
More than one thousand Tamil people, men, women and children, of Salli in the Trincomalee District are picketing from 7.30 a.m. today, demanding that they should be provided security for their lives and properties from armed forces. The protestors have blocked the Uppuveli-Kuchcheveli road at Pillaikulam bridge.

Salli is a fishing hamlet 5 km. north of Trincomalee town.

Villagers said Sri Lanka Navy (SLN) personnel went on a rampage Thursday night, following an attack by the Liberation Tigers, in which a Sub Lieutenant was killed and two others were wounded.

The villagers said the naval personnel sealed off the village till Friday noon, and conducted a search operation.

Some SLN personnel forcibly entered houses and caused damage to their properties. Twelve houses and 2 shops were burnt down with their belongings, the villagers said.

According to residents, the damages to houses and properties have been estimated over 2 million rupees.

The villagers now demand that they should be paid compensation and an assurance from the authorities that they would not do any harm to civilians in the area in future.

A senior police official rushed to the scene and requested the protestors to abandon their action. He assured that he would take steps to provide security to them. But villagers did not respond to his request and are continuing the protest.

All vehicular movements including bus services to and from Trincomalee to Kuchchaveli have come to a standstill.

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