The Lanka Academic

APRIL 14, 2004 EST, USA
VOL. 5, NO. 9

2004 ELECTION RESULTS TLA predicted the outcome using a mathematical model. How did we do? Send us your comments and feedback.
Headline Summary
F R E E      C L A S S I F I E D S
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More Than 1000 Child Soldiers in LTTE Ranks- UNICEF
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 6.45. A.M Thursday 15 April. United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) says that it is possible that more than 1000 child soldiers are still in the ranks of the LTTE and the Agency is trying to get a pledge from the LTTE not to recruit child soldiers in the future. UNICEF spokesman Geoffrey Keele said the final count down of child soldiers, which UNICEF facilitated the release in the east, could go up to 183. Keele said he was awaiting confirmation from UNICEFs Batticaloa office for further information.

UNICEF said that all the children released yesterday were from the eastern region and the agency has called on the LTTE to begin a process of releasing equal numbers of underage recruits from the northern cadres as well. When questioned if UNICEF could ensure that the children released will not be recruited again by the LTTE, Keele said "Our social workers are working closely with the families to ensure they were leading normal lives. We follow up with them on a regular basis."

A high ranking military official in the east pointed out that UNICEF and other organizations involved with the rehabilitation of former child soldiers must ensure that they are well supported and taken care of. He said "Out of the LTTE cadres who turned themselves to the authorities, 60 to 70 % are under 18 and they should not be allowed to be recruited again by any other party in the future. It is the duty of UNICEF and other organizations to keep a close eye and to ensure that." The officer added, " It is a tragedy that children are forcibly recruited and given arms to fight when they should have led normal lives. They should be in school."
Published: Wed Apr 14 21:03:07 EDT 2004

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No difference between Chandrik and Ranil-JHU
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 6.00 A.M Thursday 15 April. The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) says that the party do not see any difference between President Chandrika Kumaratunge and former Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghes policy in dealing with the LTTE. Spokesman for JHU, Athuraliye Rathana Thero said that the present government is working closely with the LTTE and the Alliance had proved it by helping Prabhakarans faction to defeat Karuna. He accused the government of helping Prabhakaran to violate the ceasefire agreement and the MOU signed between the government and the LTTE. "How did Prabhakarans troops land in certain areas and carried out attacks against Karunas troops?" he questioned. JHU spokesman also said, "We can see clearly that the present government and the LTTE have already come to an agreement and some understanding. This makes us very uncomfortable"

Rathana thero said that they were not at all happy with Wickremasinghes relationship with the LTTE and they are even more saddened about the current developments under President Kumaratunge. Udaya Gammanpila of the JHU questioned, " Why did the Alliance which screamed so about the Millennium City debacle sacrifice Karuna, who stood against Prabhakaran?" He said that the JHU could not understand the double standards of the Alliance. In an earlier statement, the JHU said by allowing the Tigers to move thousands of fighters to the east by land and sea the new government had caused a serious breach of responsibility.
Published: Wed Apr 14 20:35:09 EDT 2004 Back to the top

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Tamil Tigers back in control of east, trying to hunt down renegade leader
Associated Press, Tue April 13, 2004 23:34 EDT . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger rebels were back in full control of eastern Sri Lanka - on Wednesday, and launched a new search for a renegade guerrilla leader who had carved out a fiefdom there but whose forces dissipated in recent days in the face of a rebel onslaught. ``UNICEF welcomes the release of these children,'' Ted Chaiban, UNICEF's representative in Sri Lanka - , said in a statement. ``For too long these children have had to live as soldiers and have been denied the rights of other children to learn, play, and live in the security of a family environment.''

The Sri Lankan military has offered Muralitharan protection and was awaiting word Wednesday on whether he would accept. The offer could anger the main rebel group.

``We don't know where he is, but if he asks for protection, we can give him so,'' Gen. Lionel Balagalle, who heads Sri Lanka - 's 100,000-strong armed forces, told The Associated Press.

Muralitharan pulled his 6,000 fighters out of the 15,000-strong rebel army on March 3 in a dispute over regional rivalry and political strategy. He alleged the northern-based leaders were considering a return to war and that eastern Tamils were treated as second-class in the rebel administration.

Separatists Tamils launched their violent campaign for a separate homeland in 1983, alleging discrimination at the hands of majority Sinhalese. The war killed 65,000 people before it was halted in a February 2002 cease-fire accord. Peace talks on a last solution were launched but have been on hold since last year.
Published: Wed Apr 14 00:22:53 EDT 2004 Back to the top

Truce Monitors Return to Eastern Sri Lanka After Recent Fighting
VOA news, 14 April. Military officials in eastern Sri Lanka say the area of recent fighting between two Tamil Tiger rebel factions is safe enough for European truce monitors to resume their work... Back to the top

India News: LTTE man shot by Karuna fled India after Gandhi ..., 14-April-2004 . New Delhi, India : A Tamil Tiger intelligence operative shot dead by renegade commander Karuna in Sri Lanka had escaped from India three months after the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991... Back to the top

Surrendered cadres killed by Prabhakarans forces - EPDP
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 1.00 P.M Wednesday 14 April. According to the Eelam Peoples Democratic Party (EPDP)website their eastern sources have revealed that hundreds of Eastern cadres who were under Karuna and surrendered to Prabhakarans forces were shot and killed... Back to the top

Jaffna looks to future
BBC, Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 April, 2004, 12:0. By Soutik Biswas BBC News Online correspondent in Jaffna Life is changing in Sri Lanka as the trappings of modern life intrude after years of war... Back to the top

Lanka's minority govt in a hurry to change constitution
Hindustan Times, April 14. As on date, the United Peoples' Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is running a minority government in Sri Lanka, seven MPs short of a majority... Back to the top

Sri Lankan forces help Karuna flee
Hindustan Times , April 14. The leader of the breakaway faction of the LTTE, Eastern Commander Col Karuna, has dispersed his forces and fled to an unknown destination outside Eastern Sri Lanka, possibly with the help of the Sri Lankan armed forces... Back to the top

Report: Some deported terror suspects being tortured
Associated Press, Wed April 14, 2004 10:00 EDT . CHAKA FERGUSON - Associated Press Writer - Several nations, including Canada, Germany, Britain and the United States, have extradited terrorist and national security suspects to countries where Human Rights Watch said torture is widespread, such as Egypt, the Philippines, Russia, Sri Lanka - , Syria and Uzbekistan, the report said... Back to the top

Karuna s associate returns to LTTE, April 14. Mr.Visu (Sinnathamby Gopalan), who was appointed as the political head of the Karuna group in Batticaloa and Amparai districts by the renegade commander Vinayagamoorthy Muraleetharan when he broke away from the Liberation Tigers, rejoined the LTTE Wednesday afternoon in Batticaloa town, sources said. Back to the top

Tamil Tigers release nearly 150 child soldiers in eastern Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Tue April 13, 2004 07:21 EDT . - - COLOMBO,Sri Lanka - (AP) Tamil Tiger guerrillas released nearly 150 child soldiers in eastern Sri Lanka - on Tuesday after they beat back a breakaway rebel faction in clashes over the weekend, the U... Back to the top

Sri Lankan president commences constitutional reforms
People's Daily, April 13, 2004 07:40 AM EST. Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga has commenced constitutional reforms by presiding overthe first round of discussions on the matter, the official Daily News said on Tuesday... Back to the top

World News: Escalating conflict in LTTE threatens Sri Lanka peace ..., April 13, 2004 07:30 AM EST. Colombo, Sri Lanka could be readying for war while pursuing peace, reports OneWorld... Back to the top

Sri Lankan cricket board says it has received report on Muralitharan's bowling action
Associated Press, Wed April 14, 2004 06:30 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The Sri Lankan cricket board said Wednesday it has received a confidential report on ace offspinner Muttiah Muralitharan's bowling action ahead of a formal release... Back to the top

Breakaway faction of Tamil Tigers in disarray, cadres dispersing, leader on the run
Associated Press, Tue April 13, 2004 06:45 EDT . BETH DUFF-BROWN - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A renegade Tamil Tiger rebel leader was on the run Tuesday with his forces dispersing, following days of factional fighting with fellow Tamil militants that killed dozens and threatened Sri Lanka - 's fragile cease-fire... Back to the top

Sri Lanka 's road to peace on shaky ground with rebel skirmish, cracks in new government
Associated Press, Tue April 13, 2004 03:17 EDT . BETH DUFF-BROWN - Associated Press Writer- COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The violent clash between rival factions of separatist Tamil guerrillas was a big step backward on the road to peace, made even bumpier by cracks in the island-nation's new government... Back to the top

Tigers retake Sri Lanka east, residents return home, April 13, 2004 07:35 AM EST. COLOMBO - Thousands of people in Sri Lankaís east are returning home after the main faction of the islandís Tamil Tiger rebels vanquished a breakaway group in weekend clashes, officials said on Tuesday... Back to the top

LTTE launches offensive to suppress dissident eastern faction, April 13, 2004 07:35 AM EST. The exact number of dead and wounded is unknown. The bodies of 10 fighters from the Karuna faction were reportedly brought to the eastern city of Batticaloa... Back to the top

Renegade LTTE Tigers destroy artillery, mortars before fleeing, April 13, 2004 07:30 AM EST. Sri Lanka's renegade Tamil Tigers crippled artillery guns and mortar launchers before ending their factional war with the main rebel outfit, military sources said today... Back to the top

Peace restored in east Lanka, April 13, 2004 07:30 AM EST. Thousands of people in Sri Lanka's east are returning home after the main faction of the island's Tamil Tiger rebels vanquished a breakaway group in weekend clashes... Back to the top

Lankan press indulges in India bashing, Colombo, April 12, 2004. "India bashing" is back at the centre stage of Sri Lankan politics... Back to the top

Little hope for Sri Lanka, April 13. Thirty years of civil war have done irreparable harm to Sri Lanka... Back to the top

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