June 9: Lankan truce pact under grave threat »
Defying the international community, the LTTE on Friday reiterated its resolve to fight for the self-determination of the Tamils of North East Sri Lanka, outside the confines of a united Sri Lanka.
In a communiqué issued in Oslo after the aborted talks with the Sri Lankan government, the LTTE said that the international community could not insist that a solution should be found within a united Sri Lanka.
The international community's insistence that a solution should be found within a united Sri Lanka, coupled with the military threat to the LTTE, would not only disrupt the power equilibrium, but also remove any incentive for the Sri Lankan government to seek a negotiated settlement, the rebels argued.
The LTTE alleged that Sri Lanka was a 'failed state' lacking in ability and will to find a 'just and equitable negotiated settlement' of the ethnic conflict in the island.
It pointed out that Sri Lanka had 'achieved the status of being 25th in the index of failed states'.
The international community was making a 'misguided' attempt to differentiate the 'Tamil Nation' from the LTTE, the statement said.
This was untenable because the LTTE was the sole interlocutor of the 'Tamil Nation' in its negotiations with the outside world.
It was also 'injurious' to the peace process, the LTTE said.
De facto state of Tamil Eelam
Claiming parity with the sovereign, elected government of Sri Lanka, the LTTE said that it was running a 'de facto State of Tamil Eelam' exercising jurisdiction over '70 percent of the Tamil Homeland' with control over the seas adjoining it.
It said that this 'de facto state' had its own laws, independent judiciary, police force and a full administrative apparatus.
The LTTE said that it was not only the Tamils' sole representative, but also the 'sole defender and protector of the People and State institutions with its own modern defence forces.'
Justifying its adoption of armed struggle, the LTTE said that the Tamil Nation's peaceful resistance over a period of three decades was 'brutally crushed by the Sinhala nation.'
This was because there was no balance of power, the rebel statement said.
The LTTE's line is that its military might has brought about a balance. This balance has to be maintained in order to have a level playing field during negotiations.
The Oslo communiqué of June 9, is a long litany of complaints against the Sri Lankan state with references to an alleged international indifference to the plight of the Tamils.
Significance of LTTE's statement
The LTTE's latest statement is very significant in the context of the fact that the Oslo talks did not take place, and the Norwegian peace facilitators have said that unless the Sri Lankan government and the LTTE give written replies to five critical questions on the maintenance of the Ceasefire and the status safety of the Nordic truce monitors, neither Oslo nor the monitors will function.
The LTTE's reiteration of its separatist agenda at this juncture adds an alarming dimension to an already bad situation.
There is a danger of a political vacuum coming into existence in Sri Lanka, a vacuum, which may be filled by war, or the escalation of the on-going ugly, shadow war.
LTTE's Mannar commander killed, says Karuna group
Meanwhile, the breakaway LTTE group, led by Karuna, claimed that its deep penetration units had killed Mahendi, the commander of the mainstream LTTE in Mannar in North West Sri Lanka.
The Karuna group's spokesman Thuyavan told Hindustan Times on Saturday, that Mahendi wad killed by a claymore mine blast at Thunukkai at 6 am on Saturday.
Thuyavan also said that at 6.30 am in Theeli, in an LTTE-controlled area in Batticaloa district, the Karuna group killed an LTTE cadre, Gangadharan, and four others.
Edited By - Rapaport - 10 Jun 2006 17:50:55 GMT