Saturday, March 14, 2009

Did BOI Approve Equipment For LTTE Arms Manufacture?

Colombo, 14 March, ( Using facilities and equipment approved by the government-run Board of Investments (BOI), the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had imported lathe machines and other equipment for the manufacture of its military hardware, according to military sources.

The then head of the BoI, Arjunna Mahendran had approved the imports and facilitated their transport to the Vanni which was under LTTE control. Military sources say there is documentary evidence of these transactions involving the BoI..

The LTTE’s sophisticated transmission and allied equipment had been imported and transported to LTTE controlled areas during the ceasefire period. The ceasefire agreement was entered into by the then government and the LTTE in February 2002.

These sophisticated equipment were sent to Kilinochchi, along with the radio transmission equipment donated to the Tamil Tigers by the Norwegian government.

The Voice of Tigers (VoT) radio transmission, aired through this equipment, helped the LTTE to enhance its propaganda and also attract Tamil youth towards the movement.

V-Sat equipment included in these shipments were used to communicate with both the Tamil Diaspora and the LTTE’s agents internationally. The Sri Lanka Army during its operations recently recovered most of these sophisticated communications equipment when they overran a Tiger base in Puthukyiruppu.

But the LTTE is still in possession of a part of these V-Sat equipment which it uses for its communication purposes. The LTTE’s financial wing chief, Subarathnam Selvatureiy alias Thamilendi alias Ranjith Appa, who was killed on March 10 east of Puthukkudiyirippu, is said to have extensively used these V-Sat communications equipment to carry on the international financial activities of the outfit.

Thamilendi was a high profile LTTE leader who handled LTTE’s bank accounts, tax collection and all financial matters, according to military sources.