Tamil Tigers accuse Sri Lanka of 'genocidal war'

Separatist Tamil Tiger rebels on Thursday accused the Sri Lankan government of launching a “genocidal war” against northern Tamils.

Responding to concerns expressed by New Delhi and major political parties in India’s southern Tamil Nadu state over ongoing military operations, the rebels accused the military of “indiscriminate shelling and bombardments”.

Writing to Tamil Nadu leaders, the head of the political wing of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), B Nadesan, alleged that Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse’s government was “conceited in its military aggression”.

Nadesan’s letter described the plight of thousands of Tamils uprooted from their homes and villages and forced to seek refuge in the open due to the “genocidal war”.

“All the Sinhala forces and parties were giving support to the war being waged by the Rajapakse government with a wrong assumption that even Tamil Nadu would not come forward to voice for Eelam Tamils,” Nadesan added.

The Tamil Tigers took up arms in 1972, demanding minority rights, and in 1976 called for a separate state named Eelam.

Nadesan said the LTTE hoped the “solidarity” extended by Indian politicians would become “practically sound political support”.

The United Nations estimates 230 000 people have been displaced in the recent wave of fighting as troops move to dismantle the LTTE’s mini-state in the north. Troops wrested the east from the rebels in July 2007.

India this week expressed “grave concern and unhappiness” at the mounting casualties among unarmed Tamil civilians in the military offensive and asked Colombo to “act with greater restraint”.

The 80-million population of India’s southern Tamil Nadu state share cultural and emotional links with minority Tamils in Sri Lanka.

The Colombo government formally revoked a moribund truce in January. Since then, 7 258 Tigers have been killed, according to the military, which places its own losses at 707 soldiers.—AFP

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