Tamils stopped at gunpoint, Sinhalese demonstrate during Pillay visit to Trinco
The occupying Sri Lanka Army in Trincomalee visited all the camps where uprooted Tamil civilians were staying and threatened them that they would be facing dire consequences if they were to take part in awareness gatherings anywhere in the district during the visit of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms Navanetham Pillay. The SL police didn’t allow local media reporters to any of the venues where Ms Pillay was interacting with the people and the civil society. Meanwhile, the SL military deployed its paramilitary and intelligence operatives to organize a protest giving placards portraying that LTTE was the main culprit in ‘abducting’ people. The Sinhala extremist JVP and JHU elements were also behind bringing false victims to the stage-managed protest held in front of the District Secretariat.
Despite the prevailing threats, some Tamils managed to attend awareness gatherings demanding resettlement, information on the whereabouts missing persons and objecting the genocidal land grabs.
There was no visible mobilization by the Muslims in Trincomalee.
Ms Navi Pillay visited Ki’liveddi ‘welfare centre’ and met a section of the uprooted people from Champoor. She also visited Naavaladi and Verukal areas where the war-affected people had been resettled.
Tamil civil society representatives who met the High Commissioner for Human Rights submitted a detailed report on the systematic destruction of Saiva temples, Sinhalicisation, Sinhala colonisation, the plight of resettling people and the situation of refugee camps known as ‘welfare centres’.
The SL authorities rushed ahead with distributing dry-ration cards that had remained suspended during the past 2 years.
The SL authorities had also rushed to ‘resettle’ 400 people at Koonith-theevu, without basic facilities or any infrastructure.
The local journalists were not allowed even to the venues where the occupying Sinhala colonial governor of the East, Rear Admiral (retd) Mohan Wijewickrama and the Sinhala Government Agent of the district of Trincomalee Major General (retd) T.T.R. De Silva held meetings with Ms. Pillay.
The SL Government Agents of Batticaloa and Ampaa’rai of the occupying regime in the East had also been invited to be present along with these Sinhala military administrators in Trincomalee.