20 July, 2019

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Tamil Women Coerced Into Joining The Military – A Statement Of Concern By WAN)

By Colombo Telegraph

“The UN Security Council Resolution 1325 clearly states that the full participation of women is essential for the rehabilitation process in the post war situation, and women’s specific needs should be taken into account in developing a prerequisite to disarmament and demilitarization. WAN is deeply concerned about the lack of choice and decision-making power for women in the formerly war-torn areas request that the civil administration be completely handed over to civil structures as a genuine measure of the Government’s reconciliation program.” says Women’s Action Network (WAN)

Issuing a statement it says; “On November 15th, male military personnel picked up the women from their homes and transported them to the Bharathipuram camp. The first day was spent collecting detailed personal information of the women. A military function for new recruits was held on the 16th, the second day. It was only then that the women realized that they were to join the military.  Some panicked and called their families, and informed the military that they did not wish to join. The military informed them that they could only leave after the function. On the 17th the function was held inside the Army camp while some of the family members of the women protested standing on the other end of the same military camp. ”

We publish below the full text of  the letter;

Women’s Action Network (WAN), as a collective of 11 women’s groups from the North and the East, is deeply concerned by the recent efforts to recruit women into the military in the districts of Killinochchi and Mullaitheevu.

Post-war development has failed to provide the most basic needs for those who live in Killinochchi and Mullaitheevu, especially the women of the area. People continue to live in vulnerable situations without sufficient security and independence, so may even lack the basics such as a safe place to sleep. After the war over 60% of families in Vanni are headed by women and they have become the primary wage earners of their families, in addition to being the main care givers in the household. Hence, women play a critical role in fulfilling social, economical and cultural needs and rights in the country.  High unemployment and the rising cost of living control the choices and women are forced to make decisions that go beyond choice. This militarised environment, including military involvement in economic activities, administration and even reconciliation, is not conducive for human development further debilitates the already fragile existence of this community.ve

As the media has highlighted in recent weeks Tamil women have been recruited to the military. While this may seem as an action in the direction towards reconciliation and inclusion, a cursory glance into the appointment process shows a lack of transparency, information and coercion. Military personnel of Mullaitheevu and Killinochchi area were involved in the recruitment process and have targeted economically vulnerable families. In some villages it has been announced through loudspeakers or they have gone in-person and in a few others they have used the GS of the area. Young women from women-headed families or families with five or more family members have been targeted in general. The greatest concern is the lack of information and informed consent. Those recruited have been informed that they would be engaging in clerical work, or with the GS, that work will only be for a few hours, and that they would be able to work in their own areas. They have also been promised a pay of Rs.30,000 per month.  Around 109 women applied and appeared for interviews. The information provided never mentioned that they will be working for the military and will have to join the military to perform these duties.

On the 05th of November 2012, the military took the women who registered their names for these jobs to the military camp in Bharathipuram in Killinochchi District. The women underwent a medical exam conducted by male military doctor and a male-nurse. All information was gathered in Sinhala, except for their names and addresses. The women were also requested to provide a letter of recommendation from GS or Justice of Peace and/or from Christian priest for Christians, birth certificate, and school leaving certificate and to hand to police in their area of residence. Subsequently, the  women who went to deliver their documents to their police who fingerprinted them. Later on military personnel visited the houses of these women and instructed to join work on the 15th of November. The military informed the women and girls that they will be in 03 month residential program to learn Sinhala and English.

On November 15th, male military personnel picked up the women from their homes and transported them to the Bharathipuram camp. The first day was spent collecting detailed personal information of the women. A military function for new recruits was held on the 16th, the second day. It was only then that the women realized that they were to join the military.  Some panicked and called their families, and informed the military that they did not wish to join. The military informed them that they could only leave after the function. On the 17th the function was held inside the Army camp while some of the family members of the women protested standing on the other end of the same military camp.

A female military officer stood next to each new recruit thus preventing the women from communicating with their families. Fathers of these women had been garlanded and the mothers were given badges with the title of ‘brave mother’. Of the 109 girls, 06 were released due to the efforts of their families. As a result, the rest of the women were permitted to meet their families without any restrictions.  As of 02nd December, mobile phones have been barred inside the camp.  The families were informed that the women have been provided with uniforms. It is obvious that the women or the families were not provided with accurate information, and therefore not allowed to make an informed choice. Moreover these activities have violated the gazette notification procedures which is required by law.

This situation raises grave concerns regarding the role of the state and the military in the lives of women, particularly from Killinochchi and Mullaitheevu, the need to provide physical fitness training and the continued militarization of the North, and the continued security of these women while in service. In two other occasions civil service appointments (Montessori teaching and working in government farms run by the military) have been given to women through the involvement of the Civil Defense Department of the Sri Lankan military rather than the relevant civilian administration bodies. The militarization of civilian administration and of the community in the Wanni raises deep questions regarding the commitment of the Sri Lankan Government in creating a society that is equal, equitable and free of violence.

The UN Security Council Resolution 1325 clearly states that the full participation of women is essential for the rehabilitation process in the post war situation, and women’s specific needs should be taken into account in developing a prerequisite to disarmament and demilitarization. WAN is deeply concerned about the lack of choice and decision-making power for women in the formerly war-torn areas request that the civil administration be completely handed over to civil structures as a genuine measure of the Government’s reconciliation program.

*PHOTO Courtesy/ AFP

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    War- affected Tamil women have also been given the options to starve, be abused and battered , head fatherless households, care for their orphaned grand children, be sexually exploited and of course engage in prostitution to feed their children.

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      Why expand the military when in fact it needs to be REDUCED since war officially ended almost 4 years ago? Other kinds of jobs and skills training are necessary!
      Is all this Gota the white van Goons idea for the new war the Rajapassa Bros will be fighting against ALL the citizens of Lanka in 2013? Surely, recruitment to the military has be advertised and those being recruited need some qualifications?!Or, are these women being recruited as home guards or paramilitaries?
      On second thoughts, it is clear that the Rajapassa Bros are preparing for their NEW WAR against the people of Lanka – the lawyers, professionals, trade unions and joint opposition – having impeached the CJ after running a Kangaroo Court in Diya-wenna parliament come 2013!
      Lets see who wins this mother of all battles for Lanka in 2013!

      • 0
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        Beware you are already being Warred by rajoporkistan familial.

        WAR is a perversion of SEX

      • 0
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        The Military can be used in other branches. They can help the chinese to build road and railways that they might be able to blow up on a latter date. Huh? What say you if you can get things together with the diaspora and after the US and the UK have finished with the Middle East and they remember that you have fallen at their feet asking for “justice”. For the moment the Tamil Problem is not their’s. It is defending Israel. So cool it and wait your turn from the back of teh queue. Not important anyway.. there is no oil in Jaffna or Killinochchi. Perhaps gingerly oil.. but teh yanks don’t like the smelly stuff. Be patient. If you can’t get the Rajapakse’s may be you can get their great grand kid’s children. before the end of the world.

    • 0
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      Just so it’s clear to everyone, women who once held weapons in aid of a Ealam pipe dream are now holding weapons in aid of a reconciliation pipe dream.

    • 0
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      This is a more respectable way of earning a living don’t you think? Women were conscripted by “The Leader” and now at least they are being paid for marching in the sun!

  • 0
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    How about practicing Veternary medicine on them? Have you been denied that?

    • 0
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      Suryagamage nilan,

      I opine that you need treatment by a Veterinarian urgently, as they have to diagnose and treat illness in animals that are in effect dumb because they do not speak our languages! The Vets are trained to observe symptoms much better than human doctors.

      Dr.R.N

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        If the intake to universities during your time was purely on merit and not on ethnicity like in my time, I am sure you would have done medicine and not veterinary science.

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          Raja,

          I had no particular desire to study human medicine. Further, I failed the chemistry practicals at the Adv. level examination, because I was not taught that the Lasaigner’s test to identify aromatic compounds had to use sodium bicarbonate instead of sodium! I am glad I did Veterinary Science, because I love animals and now think they are better than the human counterparts.

          Further, my brothers were victims of the standardisation scheme and their pains were my pain.

          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      Animal mentality does not differentiate between human and animals. So how about submitting yourself for what you suggest for others?

      • 0
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        Lanka Muslim,

        I may, if I perceive the need. In fact, I treat myself most times and rarely seek the services of a human medicine practitioner . Your suggestion had been put into practice over the past 40 Plus years to some extent!

        Dr.R.N

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          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

          “I am glad I did Veterinary Science, because I love animals”

          Do you love Tigers and Lions equally or do you prefer one over the other?

          Which of these two animals is your favourite?

          You say;

          “now think they are better than the human counterparts.”

          Are you sure even after 30 years of war?

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          Native Vedda,
          Between the four-legged felines, I have no favorite. However, between the two-legged kind, my choice would be based on their disposition and comparative behaviour. After the war the two-legged tigers stand totally discredited in my eyes, where as yet have some hope left in the two-legged lions.

          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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    Recruiting/compelling anyone,even women, against their informed consent, for vocations/posts, is against the law.
    These women have not been given information about what their duties would be and full details of contract of employment as happens in recruitment/apointment to any other government posts.
    That they and their families have objected when realisation dawned on them that they had been clandestinely coerced into “working” for, or as part of, the military,as mentioned,shows their unwillingness/refusal
    to perform any work for the military,whom they view with abhorrence,being aware of the repression and oppression by the military,even enforcing/supervising by force,familial functions,worship,travel and livelihoods.
    If the resettlement process had been complete and effective,including return to their own homes and/or livelihoods,after the war ended,they would have found avenues for self employment individually or collectively aided by NGOs and other organisations,many of which are eager to asist them.Such willing ognanisations have been driven away by the military,in order to make the citizens helpless and pliable for attempts such as this to obtain “slave labour”.Lands have been alienated/misappropriated by the military and unauthorised entities aided by the military,with loss of space for farming & other persuits.
    Fishermen have been driven away from their habitats close to the sea coasts,and replaced by others from the south.
    The military regime occupying the north and east prevents even gatherings of people to plan their own advancement.It has denied fishermen,farmers,businessmen and others from commencing/practising livelihoods and vocations which they were engaged in,before/during the war.It wants to keep the citizens in a state of permanent subserviance.
    The armed paramilitaries aid in this.
    If the military keep off the job of law enforcement in their own style,
    people will/would have by now found wherewithals of subsistence/self employment.
    Denial of freedom of living free of constraints & of advancement has led to exploitaion by the oppressers who wish to perpetuate the situation.
    This forced/clandestine/illegal “recruitment” is part of the process.

    • 0
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      “Recruiting/compelling anyone,even women, against their informed consent, for vocations/posts, is against the law.”

      So??? Do you think this makes the slightest difference to the MR mindset? This just another excess that their spin-doctors will use to bolster their “rehab” issue with the international community.

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      Who are you referring to? The ones who are coercing or the ones who conscripted? Now are you trying to suggest that the LTTE did not conscript women and children. They even got the refugees from the Indian Tamils to fight on the frontline and get massacred by the forces. What about the way theused the civilians as human shields. The State Land is appropriated and distributed to settlers who once were not allowed to live in certain regions because of the Tamil Racists. If people in England can live where they want, people in India can live where they want why are you against the Sinhalese people moving in as good fireindly neighbours. Tamil people live in the Sinhalese areas don’t they. Was that not what July 1983 was all about. Gnanakoon can advice you to get one of his trawlers and make a trip to Christmas Islands then come back with Australian dollars. But the land you morgaged to the Sinhalese man you cannot get back until you create another Gnanakoon.

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        [Edited out] kasi, just shut up. you still haven’t told me of your origins.

  • 0
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    Where was this Mr Justice when Women ,Men and even Children were recruited to wear cyanide capsules as part of their employment?

    Were they given job descriptions and letters of appointment?

    • 0
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      The legitimate government elected by people cannot act like a ‘terrorist’ organization.

      • 0
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        What rubbsh are you talking Maya! No conscription just recruiting.
        Rape is when a woman is forced and penetrated. Consensual is when she is paid and that makes them prostitutes but soldiers are not prostitutes. Be proud of them.

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        Maya says:

        “The legitimate government elected by people cannot act like a ‘terrorist’ organization.”

        What did make you to think Sri Lankan government acts like a ‘terrorist’ organization.”?

        Majority of the people voted for this government therefore it has the mandate to act as it pleses.

        In the next elections you will be presented with an opportunity and choice to kick the present government out of office.

        Please be patient until the next elecetions.

        • 0
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          Uru Warige Buru Putha seems to be dreaming about the outcome of the next election. You are no different to the fox that followed the big billy goat assuming the large balls hanging from thing scrotum could fall down so that the fox could have an easy meal.

          It looks alike about to fall but never. Keeping dreaming my friend!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • 0
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      The perpetrators of such crimes received their punishment and that era ended there. The crime of the past should not be an excuse for the commitment of any similar crimes in the present. If that happens what is the difference between the terrorists and those who call themselves democratic and civilised people?

  • 0
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    On one hand, those nut cases used to SL defence forces as, Sinhalese army and now trying to recruit tamils to defence forces it is “forced” according to no name CT reporter..
    CT, do you thing people are stupid? No army in the world would give a rifle to a forced recruit..
    So why do you write this fabricated lies?

    • 0
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      Many countries practice conscription, and these “forced recruits” are used even in combat. The Tigers too did this. This, however, seems more like a misunderstanding than conscription.

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        David Blacker

        How can you ensure these women are not a future threat to the nation?

        Conscripts don’t fight well, they capitulate.

        Tamil women are the mothers, sisters, aunts, grand mothers of Tiger boys and girls. They can wait until the opportune moment to strike, strike hard and deep. Or may become sleepers passing information to LTTE and LTTE diaspora.

        How do you propose to deal with such threats and uncertainties?

        Beware of Mata Haris of Tamil Eelam.

        Stupid Sinhala weak minded soldiers are likely to fall prey to these women and are ready to betray the state and its armed forces.

        Please warn your masters. However I welcome the women joining the armed forces if their intention is to weaken the armed forces.

        I know you are longing to enlist yourself in the armed forces just after hearing this news.

        • 0
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          No one cares I am sure. What is going to happen is that thew majority 80% will be among the 11% and if you as much as squeak… you will be counting the bars. Can you see what colonising brings. The British allowed you to infest the South and so the LTTE were able to strike at will because one woman was blinded and could not see her nose. Her brother was the court jester, so you guys had it your way. Now there is a asoldier, a sailor and a candlestick maker all there to paln and prepare. It will not be the same anymore dear friends of the LTTE.

        • 0
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          Some conscripts quit, some fight well. Read some history and you’ll find out.

          As for the rest of your comment, I’m afraid that I’m not qualified to comment on your peculiar brand of sexual fantasies.

  • 0
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    I wish the government would immediately release all Tamil women recruited without “informed consent” to the military.

    The military do not need their service and why on earth are they inviting trouble both from external sources like WAN, UN etc. etc. and internally from suspected LTTE spies???

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      Navin:

      “The military do not need their service”

      I hate to agree with you. The armed forces should continue their official policy of not recruiting from other minority communities except for their big brother network.

      This is essentially a Sinhala/Buddhist nation, owned and occupied by Sinhala/Buddhists. The armed forces’s foremost duty is to protect the Sinhala/Buddhist nation and serve the Sinhala/Buddhists. Therefore it should be manned by Sinhala/Buddhists.

      You say:

      “why on earth are they inviting trouble both from external sources like WAN, UN etc. etc. and internally from suspected LTTE spies???”

      This is not inviting trouble.

      This is another pearl in the string, a long history of self destruction. Nothing new and will not change.

      By the way have you had time to meet with the soldiers who suffer from PTDS?

      Please help them.

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    OOPS… WAN was fast asleep when Adele Balasingham garlanded the underage girls with cyanide capsules and thrown into the war front.

    Oh! Tamil Terrorist Diaspora, do you think you can conquer us? No way! You have better chance with the gullible Tamils in the west.

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      BunkerRat

      The armed forces need lot of help to deal with soldiers whose heads are screwed up after perpetrating and witnessing war crimes.

      How are you planning to help them?

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    [Edited out] chandrasiri and [Edited out] hathurasinghe, get out of north east now.

  • 0
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    rajoporkistan familial mercenary army: “La femme fatale”

    Seriously Suicide Burka Brigade SL.

    WAR is a perversion of SEX.

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    If Tamil women joined the arm voluntarily and fully aware of what they want to do, this is acceptable. However, if they were tricked into joining the army, which according to this report most of them objected to, then the region and the world have to take notice because this is the continuance of HR violations against the Tamil people. There is no
    justice available to them in the existing reality in the Jaffna District is far well known to be repeated here.

    I was intrigued to read Tamil women wished to join the army, whereas one would have thought – after decades of their misery from the war – they will flee from anything in army uniform. If the State planned this merely to gain publicity against their sagging reputation and HR history abroad particularly in view of oncoming Geneva scrutiny, then the matter must be deal with the seriousness that it deserves.

    Senguttuvan

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    Where were these groups and individuals who are interested Tamil women’s welfare when LTTE was asking them to wear Cyanide capsule and suicide jackets ?

    Those days only the groups asking political solution were very vocal.

  • 0
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    Those days Tamils women were exploited as prostitutes, they were transporting narcotics inside their female genitalia.

    Every one was silent.

  • 0
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    Jim Softly – “those days” it wasn’t the GOSL that was “exploiting” the Tamil women. Don’t you understand the difference? Or is this another one of your pathetic justifications meaning “if the LTTE did it, why not the GOSL”? So you think it is fine for the GOSL to do what they did?

    Get a life!

  • 0
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    Jimsofty,

    Simply because women under the fascist pre-2009 were denied their rights and politically abused in many cases, should not mean we should allow this to continue today under different guises.This argument will be like a supposed to be educated woman – now under the national spotlight – defending her crooked purchase of an expensive
    residential apartment – the value of which far above her known sources of income or declared assets – with alleged black money by claiming it was done by yet another allegedly crooked predecessor in that infamous “you scratch my back and I yours” arrangement. What low levels this once-proud country has been pushed into?

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuvan

      As far as I understaand, even some Tamil men are not free in the Tamil society if they are from a low caste.

      I think, for Wanni Tamils this is a blessing in disguise. This will empower them against Tamils bullying other Tamils.

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        Jim Softy says:

        “As far as I understaand, even some Tamil men are not free in the Tamil society if they are from a low caste.”

        Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains – Jean-Jacques Rousseau.

        Could you tell us how “some Tamil men” different from Rousseau’s Man.

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    Going by what I heard, witnessed and inquired over the pat few years, how accurate is this report? Further, how reliable and objective is this organisation? From what I know, there is high unemployment in the Vanni. Many Tamil men have also joined the home guards. Is it not likely that these women joined the military voluntarily?

    Why should we accept every report that appears in the press as authentic if it favours our stance and decry others which go against our pre-conceived notions? Are we not making ourselves ready victims of propaganda?

    In our education system, we are not encouraged to ask questions. We are encouraged to accept whatever is taught, uncritically. The education system in the west encourages students to ask questions, even if they are dumb. Is this what weakens our democracy and makes as sheep that follow goats?

    Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      WAN knows that tamil women traumatised by war and struggling for self respect after their trials and tribulations due to loss of their menfolk,livelihoods,places of residence,places of worship,and are forced to live under constant ‘supervision’ of their lives – even familial,social,civic & religious functions/ceremonies,will never join the very army which caused/is causing their misery.
      They are better, and factually informed than those who have taken on the job of ‘whitewashing’ the regime and its military.

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    Peter…No one says that ”if LTTE did it, why not the GOSL”. Point they are rasing is why were they silent about it at that time which shows the double standards of the HR champions.They should not pick and choose to suit their agendas and loose credibility.

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      NE -There are plenty of HR reports on the LTTE’s abuse of human rights, so I don’t think they are being selective, or losing credibility. Anyway, my response to JS had to do whether he thought the forced conscriptions (or any other abuses) by the GOSL was correct just because the LTTE did it in the past.

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    You had defeated LTTE to do what the LTTE did?

    The Tamils should be recruited to the army at least in terms of their proportion in the population.

    But Sri Lankan army is a voluntary army and not forced conscripts.

    The army should start recruiting Tamils from all part of the country,start from the top.

    First recruit males for the staff grade.But of course the entire process should be transparent and through gazette notifications

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    Perhaps this an attempt to address criticism by certain Tamils that the Army in the North is almost 100% Sinhalese. Surely it would be better to have fellow Tamils providing security in Jaffna rather than the hated Sihalese?

  • 0
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    Do we then understand, from someone who otherwise suggests to be well informed of matters army, this is some form of “forced conscription”

    Senguttuvan

    • 0
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      Senguttuvan,
      Of course they are being forced by threats of retaliation against their families if they refuse – by labelling the males as “LTTE sympathisers” with well known consequences.
      Even males who returned after “rehabilitation” are so harassed.Deeds of properties of many families have been collected by the army on the pretext of issuing ‘new deeds’.

  • 0
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    “….How accurate is this report? Further, how reliable and objective is this organisation?..” astonishingly asks an otherwise well-read, informed and articulate reader. It is upto WAN to answer this reasonable doubt soon.

    If I am allowed the luxury of reasonable speculaton, such doubts were publicly declared by the SL Army and Govt spokesman and apologists during thaose hectic days following 5/2009.
    We recall then when nearly a third of a million Tamils were held, treated and ill-treated in conditions not far dis-similar to what the jews underwent in the terrible camps of Aushwitz, Dachau, Belsen and others – we saw some raising doubts here. The UN was questioned, Navi Pillay personally villified and an entire process of “denial” was set in motion. A garrulous Govt VVIP, known to place his foot where his mouth should be, had to retract his “statistics” on more than one occasion. Even today Holocaust-deniers of the post-WW2 make the news -with Ahmedinejad leading the way.

    I know I will be criticised for my comments with the reminder Tamils, held virtual prisoners by the LTTE were helped to be free. I do not deny this. I have accepted this with thanks on several questions.
    The question that bothers me is about Tamils held in these camps since May ’09 – with some still there. Of course, I am aware the President last week told the CNN “these Tamils don’t want to leave the camps” ???

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguutuwan,

      While being astonished at your astonishment, even three + years after the war ended, with reference to why some IDPs are reluctant to leave the Chettikulam camps:

      * The have established their lives there in the past four years and do not want to go through that process againd.

      * Many areas in the Vanni are yet not demined. Those from these areas are reluctant to move to temporary settlements.

      I witnessed over the past two weeks, the stretches of land on either side of the A9 in Muhamalai, are yet being demined.

      Further, as an aside, there is a big demand for the Central Collge swimming pool now, and many male students from other schools have applied to join Central College because of the pool. Female students are not using it yet. Swimming coaches from the army and police are involved. The efforts of some individuals in the north to popularize this pool and publicize its benefits have helped.

      Dr.Rajasingam Narendran

  • 0
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    They may bring a sinhala language only policy for recruitment into the military if they find that the tamil women are fighting more bravely than the sinhalese men.

    • 0
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      shankar says:

      “They may bring a sinhala language only policy for recruitment into the military if they find that the tamil women are fighting more bravely than the sinhalese men.”

      It has been an official policy of the state to have a Sinhala/Buddhist armed forces.

      Sinhala/Buddhist state, its rulers and their cronies are the owner operators of the exclusively Sinhala/Buddhist armed forces.

      What are you talking about introducing sinhala language only policy for recruitment as if it is a fresh? When did the Sinhala/Buddhist only policy ceased to operate?

  • 0
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    Justice – I am afraid what you state is chillingly true. Where indeed is the hope for reconciliation?

    Senguttuvan

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    David Blacker says:

    “Read some history and you’ll find out.”

    Could you refer me to source material.

    “I’m afraid that I’m not qualified to comment on your peculiar brand of sexual fantasies.”

    Are you qualified to comment on other matters? Please name a few topic.

    Chillax man chillax, which means Chill and Relax.

    • 0
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      Your man BB is worse than a joke
      in his fantassins vernacular véhiculeur.
      Yang De Yen, Yen De Yang Yaman lanza.

  • 0
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    Is the writer telling us that the plight of Tamil women with respect to conscription is no better than what it was under the LTTE?

    What I am quite certain is that no writer had the guts to write against the forced conscription of women into LTTE cadres. Under LTTE conscription did the children ever see their parents at the initial stages of the training?

    For what it is worth I call upon those in authority to investigate the veracity of these claims.

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      Jayagath Perera

      I don’t care what the writer says.

      The truth of the matter is that they are falling out of the melting pot, into the fire.

      It is for you to decide which one comparatively better, the melting pot or the fire if you are in it.

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    Dr. Narendran,

    As I mentioned years ago, the symbolism of the Swimming Pool goes well beyond its value in Rs/Cts – which at any rate, is a smaller sum. But the message it brings viz:- the Sinhala Govt in the South, in presenting this small gift of a “first time” swimming pool in the Peninsula, cares for the well-being and future of the Tamils in Jaffna will go a long way in changing the thinking of the long-suffering Tamil “after all our Southern cousin is someone we can live with if we also create some space for that co-existence”

    It will not be long before Jaffna produces some swimming champs winning All-Island titles. After all it was the Peninsula that produced one of this country’s greatest long-distance swimmers (Narayanasamy??) in the 1950s. Swimming pools have special memories to me as both my son and daughter were leading swimming champions in their time in the late 70s and 80s. You speak of the army using the pool. During my own swimming days, it was the legendary Marks Bros – Geoff and Boris – who dominated national swimming. Boris, joined the Army and probably helped swimmers there.

    So let us hope the Govt will invest in many more people-oriented projects of the “swimming pool” variety where the image of the Sinhalese and the regime – as the oppressor and the enemy – will give way to the ancien neighbour, friend and cousin – not necessarily in that order.

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuwan,

      The name was Vivekananthan or in short Ananthan. He swam the Palk Strait in record time.

      Dr.R.N

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    As to “astonishment” it is not just I. If you read the columns here, readers are beginning to see through who the collusionists with given-agendas are and who are those who spontaneously work towards Sinhala-Tamil Unity.

    I realize my “2 Nations in 1 country” theory is presently anathema to many Sinhala readers – but, I figure, they will come around in due time unless they come with more acceptable formulaes for a living together in the interim. After all it took them 30 years and a foreign army to yield to that long-denied justice of the parity of language issue, as the late Thondaman would smilingly remind us.

    In as much I agree with you there are many areas still to be de-mined where people cannot be re-settled, I must insist there is still much room for many thousands to be re-settled in safe areas – some of which now allegedly given to businessmen from the south, friends of those in the army top and the ruling clique, for investments in the hospitality industry. This, I am afraid, is not acceptable. If the Govt has a programme to develop the tourist industry in the NEP, for the present, it is best they give the choice to enterprenauers from the Province also in an effort to build the economic base of the people there, destroyed by the War of 3 decades. This will attractFDIs, Donors and encouragement to the Govt from the many States they have ostracised by suspect diplomacy.

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuvan

      “I realize my “2 Nations in 1 country” theory is presently anathema to many Sinhala readers”

      I remember there were one or two Tamil militant groups (Marxist, Leninist, Maoist, Stalinist, champagne socialist, Cuban Cigar chomping….) proponents of this “2 Nations in 1 country” theory. What are the differences between your ideas and theirs?

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      Senguttuwan,
      You are overlooking an important aspect in your comment. When the IDPs are resettled in an area other than the place of their original habitation, there are many protests- local and foreign. Nothing is black and white in these issues and there are many gray areas, which few accept as inevitable. Further, I noticed that even in December’009, many IDPs had established viable home gardens,with even mango plants in Chettikulam.

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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        Dr.Rajasingham Narendran says:

        “After the war the two-legged tigers stand totally discredited in my eyes, where as yet have some hope left in the two-legged lions.”

        I assume that you are not encouraged/influenced/persuaded/coerced/black mailed by Kandyan hospitality to have hope in the two-legged lions.

        Has it got to do with rekindled memories of “old flame”?

        You don’t have to respond to my comment if you feel uncomfortable.

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          Native Vedda,

          There must be plenty of the descendants of old flames around for all of us, as we share about 60% of our genes! Further, once past a certain age even old flames cannot light fires where it matters!

          Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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      Senguttuwan,

      It is really astonishing that you do not discriminate between various comments. There are intelligent comments, wise comments, objective comments, subjective comments,learned comments profound comments, shallow comments, ironic comments, studied comments, worthless comments, mean comments, malicious comments,ignorant comments,politically motivated comments, set-up/staged comments, etc, etc. You have been in the writing and commenting business for a long time to understand the differences.

      Dr.Rajasingham Narendran

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    Native Veddah,

    I cannot recall any of the militant groups earlier calling for the
    2 Nations theory. I know that recently Gajendran – the son of my good friend Kumar-Yoga Ponnambalam – in his new Party is going by this.
    If the TNA succeeds to get some justice for the Tamils from the Rajapakse Family it is fine. Otherwise, they will be inclined to move in this direction.

    Who is this Cigar chomping Marxist you have in mind. Not Dayan J?
    I remember my friend the journo Mervyn showed me Cuban Cigars Castro had personally sent to JRJ, which the letter presented to his friend
    Mervyn whenever he is asked to come for an exchange of views. The culture and standards were so sublime then Mervyn, after his solicited visits to Ward Place, used to come out the following morning with trenchantly critical articles of JRJ/UNP. Men of that calibre knew the distinction between fidelity to one’s country and profession and the obligations of hospitality. Will we ever see those noble qualities again? I think not. I like to be proven wrong here.

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuvan:

      “Who is this Cigar chomping Marxist you have in mind.”

      I am carried away by my focus on anything left in Sri Lanka including the Tamil pretenders to Marxist traditions.

      EROS and EPRLF though professed to be Marxists both were silent on Separate state. In private they were for 2 nation 1 country however in public they were towing Tamil nationalistic mood which swept the island just after 1983.

      Have had any opportunity to talk to these people before and after 2009? I thought they were a bunch of do gooder liberals until EPRLF aligned to IPKF went on to violate human rights.

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    Latest reports are that 19 of the girls “recruited” by false promises
    are hospitalised in a depressed mental state to hospital.There are rumours that they had been sexually molested by male soldiers.

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    Those who unduly sing praises for the State should look into this (shocking comments of reader Justice) and make their observations.
    When the Leader of the TNA Parliamentary delegation made a Statement in Parliament last week, he expressed the fear these girls were taken in on false premises. The involuntary action allegedly was for the regime to gain a propaganda victory – for both local and overseas consumption.

    Senguttuvan

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    I must thank Dr Narendran for pointing out the Palk Staits swimmer was Anandan. I was far too small to remember. I appreciate Naren’s careful record-keeping. I believe I met his nephew some years ago – who was making the news in some other area.

    Senguttuvan

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      Senguttuvan

      He was popularly known as Aalik Kumaran Anandan.

      Navratnamy was the first person to swim across the Palk strait in the early 50s. Aalik Kumaran Anandan was Navaratnam’s nephew.

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