LTTE Diaspora, a threat to UK security
parliamentarians in the Opposition did their damnedest to gain political
mileage by projecting a gloomy picture during Sri Lanka's 2006-2009
humanitarian operation, thereby giving a prop for LTTE terrorists.
When the Security Forces marched victoriously, demolishing Tiger
power in towns in the North and the East, certain UNP parliamentarians
had the audacity to question whether the Security Forces had really
liberated those areas. They even accused the Government that its
Security Forces were going towards Medawachchi though it claimed to have
gone to Kilinochchi.
At the time, Opposition leader Ranil Wickremesinghe and
parliamentarian Dr. Jayalath Jayawardena went on regular overseas
junkets, tarnishing Sri Lanka's image and that of the Security Forces in
the international arena. While Dr. Jayawardena sang hosannas in favour
of the INGOs and the LTTE Diaspora, his leader misled world leaders.
This too could have influenced the US and the countries which
supported it to pass the recent Resolution against Sri Lanka at the
UNHRC Sessions. Several Opposition politicians too waxed eloquent over
it, thereby giving the last drop of oxygen to the moribund LTTE
leadership which was eventually vanquished at the Nandikadal lagoon
three years ago.
It is still fresh in the people's minds how Dr. Jayawardena and
several Opposition politicians made tendentious statements to exert
undue pressure on the Government through the international community and
retard the Security Forces' forward march. As a result of these
deplorable acts, the Government had to battle against deadly terrorists
on one hand and opportunist politicians on the other during that dark
Despite the LTTE being crushed militarily, Dr. Jayawardena continues
to pander to the whims and fancies of the LTTE Diaspora and Tiger
sympathisers. At a time the Government has embarked on an ambitious
reconciliation program having successfully resettled displaced persons
and put in place infrastructure development in the North, Dr.
Jayawardena is now attempting to give a political twist to isolated
incidents to gain undue political mileage.
He has written to Pope Benedict XVI, seeking the Holy Father's
intervention on alleged threats against Mannar Bishop, Rt. Rev. Dr.
Rayappu Joseph. In his letter, Dr. Jayawardena has stated that the
Bishop has been victimised by various comments by "chauvinistic and
communal-minded" people. He has also taken to task the local media of
being "sympathetic towards the Government". The UNP MP has called upon
the Pope to use his good office to ensure that the Bishop could
"continue his mission without threats, intimidation or false
The Holy Father is highly respected and honoured by millions of
people across the globe. Hence, Dr. Jayawardena, being a Roman Catholic
himself, should have known better rather than make such an appeal as
this does not come under the purview of the Holy Father. Dr.
Jayawardena, in doing so, has insulted the Holy Father.
When Sarath Fonseka was serving a jail sentence, his sympathisers
wrote to US President Barack Obama seeking the release of the former
Army Commander. At the time, they were told in no uncertain terms that
there was no point in making such an appeal to the US President since
only President Mahinda Rajapaksa could pardon him.
Fonseka was subsequently granted a presidential pardon, following DNA
parliamentarian Tiran Alles' fruitful rounds of talks with President
In like vein, in the event the Mannar Bishop has been "victimised by
various comments made by chauvinistic and communal-minded people", as
Dr. Jayawardena alleges, such a complaint should have been lodged with
the relevant authorities here and certainly not the Pontiff in the
Vatican. We also fail to see the logic in Dr. Jayawardena complaining to
the Holy Father against the local media. Had the local media being
"sympathetic towards the Government", as the UNP MP alleges, he should
settle the score locally, at least by speaking to the relevant media
personalities and appealing to their media institutions.
Dr. Jayawardena should have desisted from dragging the respected
spiritual leader of millions of Catholics around the world to gain petty
political advantage. On the other hand, it was done in a sinister
manner, just days after President Rajapaksa had a private audience with
Pope Benedict XVI. Is there any point in complaining to the Pope over
the alleged questioning of the Mannar Bishop by law-enforcement agencies
over certain matters relating to national security. Parliamentarian
Jayawardena knows only too well that Rt. Rev. Dr. Rayappu Joseph is a
citizen of Sri Lanka and is not exempted from the laws of the land. If
the need arose to question the Bishop of Mannar, the police and the
Security Forces have every right to do so in a respectful manner. The
controversial conduct of the Mannar Bishop is a secondary matter. One
wonders whether Dr. Jayawardena had been inspired to do so following the
unruly manner in which the LTTE Diaspora protested in London recently.
Even if he had been spurred on by these protesters, one should not take
him seriously as he had a notorious track record of being extremely
sympathetic towards a terrorist outfit that had killed thousands of
civilians for nearly three decades.
The violent and unruly manner in which the LTTE Diaspora behaved in
London during Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee celebrations, calls into
question UK's security, rather than that of Sri Lanka. Scotland Yard and
the London Metropolitan Police seem to have woken up only after the
recent protests in the British capital.
The LTTE Diaspora, which funds even certain Western politicians, who
survive on the expatriate Tamil vote, has the wherewithal to assemble
thousands of its members across Europe within a matter of hours. Hence,
it has the liberty to disrupt the day-to-day life of the London
citizenry at any time and bring things to a complete standstill.
The LTTE rump is exploiting the maximum advantage of the five-star
democracy that prevails in Great Britain. But does this provide them the
right to protest at the drop of a hat anywhere at any time of the day
and disrupt the lives of the majority of other citizens? This runs
counter to the principles of democracy. A coterie of such people in the
UK should not be permitted to hold the entire city administration to
ransom in the guise of democracy.
This is akin to the LTTE's killing of its own community and moderate
Tamil leaders for their so-called liberation. The British authorities
must take the bull by its horns and conduct a close study of a possible
security threat by LTTE activists there and take stringent action before
it is too late.