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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Congress MPs silent on war crimes

Preferring to keep mum on the issue of war crimes committed by the Sri Lankan army at the fag end of the Eelam war, the four Congress MPS who were part of the Parliamentary delegation that returned after a six-day tour of Sri Lanka on Saturday said that they had urged the Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa to resettle the displaced Tamils and expedite the implementation of the 13th amendment and recommendations of the LLRC report.

Talking to reporters at Satyamurthy Bhavan, Mr Sudarshana Nachiappan MP described the 45-minute long meeting they had with Rajapaksa Saturday morning as a “fruitful discussion” and said the Lankan officials had assured them that the displaced Tamils would be resettled in a few months once the ongoing demining process ends.

There are only 6,000 refugees in Menik Farm camp now against 3,00,000 in 2010 and about 10,000 arrested LTTE soldiers were being released and they would be accommodated in police or other departments there.

He added that they had urged the president to demilitarise Jaffna where Tamils are scrutinised even if they proceed to a temple or to a family function.

Another MP Mr Krishnasamy said the team assured the people of Jaffna that India, particularly TN, would stand by them.

“Whatever we saw and heard, we told the president”, Mr Nachiappan said adding that the delegation’s report would be submitted to PM.

He asserted that the army did not accompany them and they moved and interacted freely with the island Tamils.

When asked about DMK and AIADMK boycotting the trip, he said, “They are having certain aims and goals.

It is their liberty. In a democracy, we cannot expect everybody to be uniform. They want to set certain goals and we are setting certain goals.

” Asked if they had raised the human rights and war crimes issue in the meeting with the president, evasive Congress MPs said they had urged Mr Rajapaksa to implement the LLRC.

On devolution of powers to the Tamils and the 13th amendment, the MPs said the Indian government would continue to work to end the standoff between the Lankan government and Tamil National Alliance.



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