TULF leader V. Anandasangaree asked Norwegian special envoy Erik Solheim a pointed question last week: `Even you, can you go into the LTTE areas without their permission? Can you breach their iron curtain?`
Anandasangaree, who completed a short visit to India last week, confided this information to the Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) in New Delhi.
In some off-the-shoulder remarks he made, the veteran Tamil politician, who is known to be a prime LTTE target, called upon New Delhi to play a proactive role to end what he said was `the growing stranglehold` of the LTTE in Sri Lanka.
Urging that it was time that the Indian Government stop being indifferent to the Tigers, Anandasangaree said: `The kind of international mediation that is going on in Sri Lanka is strengthening the LTTE. The international players are only helping the LTTE to get a foothold even in the government-held areas.`
Warning that attempts to equate the Tigers with the Sri Lanka Government even in matters of tsunami relief were fraught with great dangers, Anandasangaree warned, `This is the time for India to say ?No? to the ISGA and ?No? to any joint mechanism in tsunami relief. Once such a joint mechanism comes up, then the Government of Sri Lanka will be caught in a trap from which it will not be able to withdraw.
`India has a moral duty to tell the Sri Lanka government that it is opposed to the ISGA. After all, India can never accept an independent Tamil Eelam state,` he said.
`We believe this is the best time to seek the support of the Indian Government to solve our problems. What we need is an Indian type devolution. We don?t need anything more.`
Anandasangaree had hinted to IANS that although his visit last week was a personal one, he had used it to meet senior members of the Indian Government.
The report said that Anandasangaree made clear that he favoured any Indian military intervention, like that of the IPKF of 1987, and he has said this to Western diplomats, too.
The TULF leader expressed the view that Norway, in particular, and the Western countries, in general, are underestimating the dangers posed by the LTTE and did not realise that ordinary Tamil people were sick and tired of living in areas under LTTE control.
`What Tamils need today is not (an) ISGA, not a joint mechanism for tsunami relief. What they need is liberation from the LTTE. What they need is a right to live without fear of the LTTE.
`The peace process cannot go on and on at the cost of the ordinary Tamil people. I told this to Erik Solheim also.`