The Lanka Academic

APRIL 16, 2004 EST, USA
VOL. 5, NO. 11

2004 ELECTION RESULTS TLA predicted the outcome using a mathematical model. How did we do? Send us your comments and feedback.
Headline Summary
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Two female Tamil Tigers, recruited as child soldiers, killed in factional fighting in Sri Lanka
Associated Press, Fri April 16, 2004 10:30 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Two female guerrillas recruited as child soldiers were killed in fighting between rival Tamil Tiger rebel factions in eastern Sri Lanka - last week, the U.N. children's agency said Friday. ``Even now, in a time of relative peace in Sri Lanka - , children have been sent to the front lines and have died there. The events of the past week ... underline exactly why there must be an end to child recruitment in Sri Lanka - ,'' UNICEF's Sri Lankan representative Ted Chaiban said.

About 33 people, including civilians, are believed to have died when the mainstream Tamil Tiger rebels, based in northern Sri Lanka - , launched its offensive against the breakaway group in the eastern region headed by commander Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan.

Muralitharan, also known as Karuna, split with the mainstream Tigers early last month in a dispute over regional control and political strategy, taking 6,000 of the group's 15,000 fighters.

The rebels released 259 child soldiers after the fighting came to a halt on Tuesday, UNICEF said.

``The Liberation Tigers of Tamileelam cannot allow any re-recruitment of children,'' Chaiban said. ``The large scale release of child soldiers must also happen in the north so we never have a tragedy like this again.''

Human rights groups have estimated the Tamil rebels may have used as many as 4,000 child soldiers in their 19-year civil war against the Sri Lankan government.

The rebels began their violent campaign in 1983 to create a separate state for minority Tamils in the country's northeast, accusing the majority Sinhalese of discrimination.

More than 65,000 people perished before a Norway-brokered cease-fire, signed in February 2002, stopped the conflict.
Published: Fri Apr 16 12:27:46 EDT 2004

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UNICEF once again appeals to LTTE to release child soldiers
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, April 16, 2004, 10.19 pm. Following the killing of two child soldiers during the LTTE internal battle in the Eastern Province, the United Nations today strongly demanded that the LTTE immediately stop child conscription, while also urging the Tiger Organisation to release 13,000 child combatants. Meanwhile UNCEF issuing a news release warned that if the LTTE fails to release the 13,000 child soldiers, they too would face the similar fate which befell on the two dead child cadres. The UNCEF has so far succeeded in facilitated the release of only 259 child soldiers from the Tiger Organisation.

The two child soldiers dead during the internal Tiger battle were identified as girls, aged 16 and 18 years. They were both attached to the LTTE rebel Leader Karuna Amman’s group.

”The families of the two girls are grieving the senseless loss of their young daughters. In the wake of this tragedy, UNICEF calls on the LTTE to free the remaining child soldiers in the organization, including those in the north,” UNCEF appealed.
Published: Fri Apr 16 12:22:32 EDT 2004 Back to the top

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President to discuss relief measures for Eastern Province IDPs on Monday
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, April 16, 2004, 10.14 pm. President Chandrika Kumaratunga today summoned Service Chiefs, Government Agents of Batticaloa, Ampara and Trincomalee Districts, the representatives of UNICEF and UNHCR for a meeting on Monday, to discuss matters relating to the relief measures for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in the Eastern Province, the Presidential Secretariat announced today.

Thousands of civilians have been displaced in Trincomalee and Batticaloa areas due to the recent LTTE internal battle, which sparked on Good Friday.

Early this week, President Kumaratunga dispatched an elite committee headed by her former secretary K Balapatabendi to the East. The special team was given the task to look into the immediate needs of persons displaced by the internecine fighting [among the Tamil militants] in the East.

More than 30,000 persons are reported to have been displaced since last week in the province.
Published: Fri Apr 16 12:17:20 EDT 2004 Back to the top

Thugs Destroy Murals of Giniwella Purana Vihara
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 6.30 P.M Friday 16 April. Hired thugs have entered the Giniwella Purana Vihara yesterday and destroyed the recently painted murals of the temple... Back to the top

LTTE Admits, they Developed a Sophisticated Military During Truce
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 3.30 P.M Friday 16 April. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has admitted that the organization developed a sophisticated military machinery since they signed the ceasefire agreement with the government of Ranil Wickreamasinghe two years ago... Back to the top

Former Sri Lankan prime minister's party faces first postelection dissension
Associated Press, Fri April 16, 2004 03:25 EDT . - - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) Ousted Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe was attacked by his former foreign minister on Friday for his handling of peace talks with Tamil Tiger rebels... Back to the top

Tamil Tiger party blasts Sri Lankan president for failing to restart peace talks
Associated Press, Fri April 16, 2004 08:44 EDT . KRISHAN FRANCIS - Associated Press Writer-COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A political party representing Tamil Tiger rebels slammed President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Friday for not taking steps to restart peace talks after her alliance won parliamentary elections earlier this month... Back to the top

US Continues Its Telephone Diplomacy With Lanka-Kadiragamar to Visit Washington Next Month
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 7.00 A.M Friday 16 April. US Deputy Secretary. of State Richard Armitage telephoned Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse Yesterday evening (15th) to congratulate the Prime Minister and expressed hope that peace negotiations would resume soon... Back to the top

SLMM back to work in Eastern province
Alladin Hussein in Colombo, April 15, 2004, 11.10 pm. The Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) today announced that they were back to their monitoring activities in the Eastern region which was held under the control of LTTE renegade Leader Karuna Amman... Back to the top

Election of Speaker- JHU May Abstain From Voting
Bandula Jayasekara in Colombo, SLT 4.00 P.M Thursday 15 April. The Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU) may not extend their support either to the UNP or to the Freedom Alliance and may abstain from voting, when the new parliament meets on 22 April to elect the speaker... Back to the top

Peace prospects bleak in Sri Lanka, April 16, 2004 7:30 AM EST. A violent split in the Tamil Tiger rebels and the shaky re-election of nationalist president Chandrika Kumaratunga have combined to cast a shadow over Canadian-supported peace efforts in Sri Lanka... Back to the top

Ceasefire reaffirmed in Sri Lanka, 15 April. THE Sri Lankan military and Tamil Tigers agreed today to honour a cease-fire recently threatened by a split in the rebel ranks, truce monitors said... Back to the top

Sri Lankan army denies providing escort to Tamil rebel leader, Friday, April 16, 2004. The Sri Lankan government has categorically denied reports that its army has provided escort to a leader of the Tamil Tiger rebels to a destination in capital Colombo after his downfall by the main rebel group from the north,the official Daily News reported Friday... Back to the top

Why did a powerful renegade Tiger give up so quickly?
Associated Press, Wed April 14, 2004 20:40 EDT . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) For 42 days, one of the best-known commanders in the Tamil Tigers' ruthless fighting machine held onto his fiefdom after breaking away from the main rebel group... Back to the top

Mahinda Rajapakse: Kumaratunga s yes man
com, 15 April , 2004. Mahinda Rajapakse, 58, was sworn in as Sri Lanka's new prime minister last week after the United People's Freedom Alliance (UPFA) won the general elections... Back to the top

Sri Lanka s Tamil Tiger Rebels Free 220 Child Soldiers in East, April 15, 2004, 10:45 AM EST. April 15 (Bloomberg) -- Sri Lanka's Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam freed about 220 child soldiers belonging to a splinter group as it stamped out resistance from the breakaway faction in the east of the country... Back to the top

LTTE , SLA agree to restore relations in Batticaloa . ., April 15, 2004, 10:45 AM EST. The Liberation Tigers and the Sri Lanka army held discussions Wednesday afternoon on restoring relations in the Batticaloa and Amparai districts in Vavunathivu, 5 kilometres northwest of the Batticaloa town... Back to the top

Tamil Tiger s top spy shot dead by Karuna, Friday 16 April 2004 . COLOMBO: Sri Lanka's Tamil Tigers have admitted losing a top spy linked to the assassination of former Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi while fighting a breakaway faction, rebel sources and military officials said yesterday... Back to the top

European cease-fire monitors to meet Tamil Tiger rebels, after renegade guerrilla leader's faction collapses
Associated Press, Thu April 15, 2004 03:43 EDT . COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) The top European monitor of a cease-fire between the government and Tamil Tiger rebels was traveling to eastern Sri Lanka - to meet with guerrilla leaders Thursday, days after fighting between rival insurgent factions... Back to the top

Muralitharan to tour Zimbabwe; Hashan Tillakaratne omitted from the squad
Associated Press, Thu April 15, 2004 00:18 EDT . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka AP) Controversial offspinner Muthiah Muralitharan has been included in Sri Lanka - 's squad to tour Zimbabwe in a move national cricket administrators hope will end speculation over his bowling action... Back to the top

Report: Renegade Tamil Tiger leader killed man linked to Gandhi assassination
Associated Press, Thu April 15, 2004 04:30 EDT . DILIP GANGULY - Associated Press Writer - COLOMBO, Sri Lanka - (AP) A renegade Tamil Tiger commander early this week shot and killed a rebel agent that his forces linked to the 1991 assassination of India's prime minister, executing the man before fleeing an onslaught by rival rebels, news reports said Thursday... Back to the top

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