The Round Table Discussion on the topic of ‘Atrocities on Peace & Humanity: Role of the LTTE’ organized by the Institute of National Security Studies was conducted on the 29th January 2021. The discussion was held virtually, creating a platform with the participation of foreign missions, diplomats, academics, military personnel and the general public; covering the subject through multiple dimensions.
The session moderated by the Director General of INSS, Admiral (Prof.) Jayanath Colombage was highlighted by the presence of Professor Rohan Gunaratna, Major Sinduja Jayaratne from General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University and Mrs. Shanika Sriyananda, Director Research and Analysis at the Presidential Secretariat.
At the onset, Admiral Colombage provided a descriptive narrative on how the LTTE was responsible for the deaths of a vast majority of Tamils and Muslims in the North and the east, and how the uprooting of LTTE terrorism by the Sri Lankan government had impacted the country in international forums; under violating human rights.
The panelists provided factual analysis based on the true incidents that took place between the Elam war and the rehabilitation process that followed. The speakers in essence briefed on the involvement of the LTTE and the Diaspora lead money and weapons trail, atrocities by the LTTE on wreaking havoc and misery during the war. Incidents including Massacring Buddhist clergy at Arantalawa, killing of innocent civilians at Kebithigollewa, bombing the Central Bank, abductions and numerous abductions and killings were among the brutal crimes brought on discussion. Special attention to the impeding United Nations Human Rights Council report was given throughout the discussion. All three speakers provided facts portraying the breaches in human security and peace with the backing of solid evidence. All three speakers made significant revelations; Professor Gunaratna stressing on the involvement of LTTE backed NGOs’ in the accusations of the UNHRC. An Important notions towards the involvement of child soldiers and incidents of the LTTE involving humans as a shield were stressed by Major Jayaratne; signifying the ethical aspect of the malpractices carried out by the LTTE. The discussion also focused on the effort of the LTTE’s international movement to incriminate the Humanitarian Operations of the Sri Lankan government using money and political powers of the world. Prof. Gunaratna vividly described how the LTTE diaspora money is linked to the said accusations. An urgent need to disclose the actuality of the war and the true violators of human security was synonymous through the panel.
Adding further significance to the discussion, Ambassador Ashraff Haidari added his insights to the forum by drawing comparisons to the Taliban operations in Afghanistan and how the international community of the Taliban had been supporting their operations to spread terror amongst the people. The ambassador’s statement also complimented the Sri Lankan Government had been developing in terms of infrastructure and is optimistic of its rise to development. Adding further to his comment, Ambassador Haidari stressed that the international community should support the Government of Sri Lanka in its effort to rise. The discussion concluded successfully with a number of significant outcomes whilst providing insights to the local and international audiences, through the eyes of those who’ve been there witnessing the brutality of the LTTE.