Tap Lanka's expertise to crush global
Many countries have done their utmost to
crush terrorism but failed. Even the most powerful armies in the world,
with sophisticated modern weapons, have come a cropper in their attempts
to crush global terrorism.
Sri Lanka's valiant Security Forces, perhaps, may not have had the
luxury of modern weapons and techniques used by their counterparts in
the so-called big countries, but crushed terrorism admirably well. The
true sons of our soil had proved their mettle by destroying the
deadliest terrorist outfit in the world.
Over four years have elapsed since Sri Lanka eradicated LTTE
terrorism and set new world standards. No other country has achieved
such a magnificent task in world history. However, it is deplorable that
those grappling with terrorism have not exploited the first-hand
experience of Sri Lanka's Security Forces and its expertise to crush
Leaders of powerful nations have often vowed to defeat global
terrorism and even deployed their armies to combat terrorism in other
countries. The need to crush international terrorism came into sharp
focus after the 9/11 attack in the United States. Many countries make
vociferous claims at international fora that they would leave no room
for terrorism to rear its ugly head, but the jackpot question is how
many of them have been sincere in their claims.
Had they practised what they preached, they would have grabbed Sri
Lanka's expertise soon after it vanquished the LTTE in May 2009. Even if
the leaders of those countries which had not supported Sri Lanka's
humanitarian operation and even spoke in favour of Tiger terrorists, but
sought help, Sri Lanka is still ready to offer its know-how and
expertise to crush global terrorism.
It seems that some countries are reluctant to acknowledge the fact
that Sri Lanka was the first and only country to crush terrorism
successfully. Although their forces are battling the scourge of
terrorism, they still seem to be having reservations in securing Sri
Lanka's expertise. On the other hand, they make subtle attempts to
undermine Sri Lanka's herculean achievements and discredit its Security
Forces for reasons best known to them.
Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva Ravinatha
Aryasinha had said that the approach adopted in post-tsunami and
post-terror Sri Lanka, with suitable adaptation, could be deployed in
managing humanitarian situations in other countries as well. Moreover,
the Government is only too willing to share its vast experience as the
best practices on humanitarian effectiveness, with other countries that
are similarly affected, to bring relief to those who suffer due to
Sri Lanka had not only grappled with separatist terrorism for almost
three decades, but also dealt with an unprecedented natural disaster,
the Asian tsunami devastation in 2004. The systems deployed by the
Government's Centre of National Operations (CNO) to manage natural
disasters, the 24/7 operational capacity now permits Sri Lanka to
evacuate coastal areas within an hour of a tsunami alert.
The manner in which Sri Lanka has completed resettlement in next to
no time after the tsunami devastation and the humanitarian operations
have set new world standards. Demining and resettling over half a
million people after the world's largest human rescue mission especially
was by no means an easy task. Many in the international community cast
doubt whether Sri Lanka could ever accomplish this stupendous task.
Thanks to the indefatigable efforts of the Government, led by
President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Sri Lanka overcame all overwhelming odds
and achieved those targets much earlier than anticipated in a manner
which no other country has done before. Sri Lanka has made significant
strides during the past four years since the end of LTTE terrorism, in
re-settling displaced persons, demining operations, restoring
livelihoods and property of those affected and initiating a program to
pay compensation to those affected in the North and the East, who had
lost loved ones and property and sustained injuries.
The recent phasing out of the operational role of the UNHCR and ECHO
and the re-orientation of the ICRC's activities in Sri Lanka reflect an
acknowledgement by the international community of Sri Lanka's success
story in responding to humanitarian situations, both man-made and
Stressing that the discourse to establish an international system to
address the dire situations and the needs of countries in the aftermath
of humanitarian catastrophes as important, Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the
UN has said that Sri Lanka takes cognizance of the need to not only
address the immediate humanitarian needs in the aftermath of a disaster,
but also as to how countries could rebuild the lives of those affected
by promoting a recovery that is sustainable and development-oriented.
Sri Lanka has reiterated its support to the humanitarian assistance
guiding principles articulated in the GA Resolution 46/182, especially
on the full adherence to the humanitarian principles: humanity,
neutrality and independence, while engaging in negotiations for and
during humanitarian operations.
However, in the co-ordination and implementation of humanitarian
assistance, the sovereignty and territorial integrity of concerned
sovereign states need to be fully respected. Sri Lanka has also
reiterated the need for de-politicisation of humanitarian aid and that
non-governmental organisations involved in the provision of humanitarian
assistance to affected countries should also be accountable, both
financially and in the work that is being carried out by them.
Many UN agencies deliberate on the negative consequences of man-made
disasters such as extreme weather patterns in many corners of the world
due to climate change. Extensive discussions have been held for many
years at the United Nations FCCC on the adaptation for climate change.
This needs policies in terms of funding and adapting to face the dire
consequences of rising sea levels and unpredictable weather patterns.
Despite many years of negotiations, things are at a standstill as
funds for adaptation, especially for developing countries, are not
forthcoming. The setting up of the Green Climate Fund has rekindled
fresh hope for developing countries as they grapple with development
challenges, apart from the humanitarian challenges.
In this scenario, Sri Lanka looks forward to greater engagement in
this dialogue, especially at the forthcoming World Humanitarian Summit
in 2015, where the knowledge and best practices on strengthening
humanitarian assistance and promoting humanitarian aid, transparency and
effectiveness could be shared among all stakeholders. It is our fervent
hope that the WH Summit would help create a synergy between the
development partners and those who work on disaster preparedness.
Irresponsible statements alleging war crimes and pontificating on
internal matters of a sovereign state would only bolster the hopes of
the LTTE rump which has taken shelter overseas. It is absurd talking
about the human rights of LTTE terrorists killed when confronting a
legitimate army of a sovereign state.
Those countries which make a big hue and cry over the human rights of
LTTE terrorists killed must bear in mind that the human rights of
hundreds of thousands of civilians either killed or affected, are by far
more important than those of Tiger cadres. Levelling unjust allegations
against Sri Lanka would only help foster terrorism and not do any good
to the half a million people rescued from the jaws of LTTE terrorism.
These civilians have received a new lease of life and begun their own
livelihoods, making a worthy contribution to the national economy. The
Government has already embarked on reconciliation, addressing the
grievances of people in the North and the East. Their real problems are
far from what the LTTE cohorts and a section of the Tamil Diaspora
The Tamils in Sri Lanka do not have unique problems due to their
ethnicity. The only problem they encounter is due to their geographical
location. Moreover, the Muslims and Sinhalese in those provinces also
experience similar problems, if any. They have now been afforded an
opportunity to elect their own representatives to run the provincial
administration, thereby restoring democracy that the LTTE had robbed
them of through the bullet.
Tamils living outside the Northern peninsula mingle freely with all
other communities sans any discrimination. This is ample testimony that
there is no ethnic problem in Sri Lanka. Concocted stories are spread by
the LTTE cohorts to woo international sympathy. The international
community should by, no means, fall prey to these machinations and make
optimum use of Sri Lanka's expertise to eradicate global terrorism.