Thursday, June 18, 2009

Sri Lanka scoffs at new Tamil exiled government

Col. R. Hariharan, a security analyst who was head of military intelligence for India's 1987-1990 peacekeeping mission to Sri Lanka, said the plan was more likely an effort to harness the financial resources the LTTE left all over the world.

"It is more connected with recouping the Tigers assets," he said. "Nobody will recognise it in any case, but some countries might tolerate this kind of thing. There are kinds of ghost governments in existence."

COLOMBO (Reuters) – The remnants of the Tamil Tigers have vowed to form a government in exile to push their separatist cause, which Sri Lanka on Wednesday called an "hallucination" and another illegal attempt to violate its unitary status.

The decision came less than a month after the Sri Lankan military finally crushed the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in a 25-year civil war, and President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared Sri Lanka reunified.

Selvarajah Pathmanathan, the top remaining LTTE leader, in a voice clip e-mailed on Tuesday signed off on the formation of a committee to create a "provisional transnational government of Tamil Eelam to take forward the next phase of the struggle".

Tamil Eelam was the name for the separate state the LTTE fought to create for Sri Lanka's Tamils, and what it had called the areas of northern and eastern Sri Lanka it had ruled until the end of the war.

Reacting to the announcement, Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama said "imagination will lead to hallucinations" and said the country had stepped up efforts to have Pathmanathan, known as KP, arrested.

"I have carried personally the arrest warrants for KP and handed them over to my counterparts in several countries and I expect the earliest arrest of KP. He will stand trial in the judicial system in our country," Bogollagama told reporters.

>> Full Story