Double standard in clearing UXOs endangers resettlement in Mullaiththeevu
Leftover unexploded cluster munitions keep exploding every day in the suburbs of PTK, where the resettling people have embarked upon the dangerous exercise of clearing their lands. In a propaganda drive to close down the Menik Farm camp in Cheddiku’lam, Vavuniyaa, Sri Lanka military operated de-mining officers have given green signal for resettlement in selected suburbs of Puthukkudiyiruppu (PTK) of Mullaiththeevu district, while the lands appropriated by the occupying SL military for militarization and Sinhalicisation in the same area have been carefully de-mined with external aid. At least four cases of big explosions have been reported in Vanni and Jaffna this week with two people seriously injured.
On Monday, a resettling Tamil man was injured in a UXO explosion and admitted to Chavakachcheari hospital and later transferred to Jaffna hospital.
On Tuesday, a 28-year-old male, Thiyagaraja Yogaraja, was seriously wounded in both of his legs at Kanakaampikaik-ku’lam in Ki’linochchi district when a land mine exploded while he was clearing the land.
The occupying military of Colombo, engaged in erasing the traces of its genocidal onslaught on Eezham Tamils, has not allowed internationally renowned humanitarian agencies in the field of de-mining to engage in independent operations even after three years have elapsed since the end of Vanni war.
Meanwhile, there are also allegations that South African companies were deployed in removing the traces of genocide and bulldozing the areas where the occupying SL military carried out its genocidal slaughter in the final days of the war. Now, the occupying Sinhala military is engaged in earning money by systematically backing plunder and trade of vehicles and scrap-iron left in the villages, where resettlement is not allowed.
In the meantime, resettling people in the suburbs of PTK engage in the dangerous exercise of burning almost everything in their lands to make sure that cluster munitions and other unexploded ordinance remaining in the surface.
Former humanitarian workers, who were engaged in de-mining work during the ceasefire, blame that the SL military de-miners are not following the procedures for clearing the lands. They further accuse that the workers at UN agencies that engage in monitoring the final phase of clearance are also influenced by the Colombo regime to cooperate with its selective approach in clearing land mines.