21 April, 2019

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WikiLeaks: How Can The UN Consider Having Contact With Terrorists? MR To UN

By Colombo Telegraph –

“The President voiced strong opposition to a possible UN role in negotiating a humanitarian pause or a surrender by the LTTE, asking, “how can the UN consider having contact with a terrorist organization?” He categorically ruled out the possibility of the UN entering into negotiations directly with Prabhakaran.” The US Embassy Colombo informed Washington.

UNSYG Chief of Staff Vijay Nambiar

“Nambiar replied that an envoy’s role would be limited to achieving the specific humanitarian objective of persuading the LTTE to allow trapped civilians to leave the safe zone and such an effort would be fully coordinated with the government. The President insisted that there was no guarantee that the LTTE would release civilians and that there were clear indications that the LTTE would not cooperate in a release.” the Embassy updated the US Secretary of State.

The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeaks database dated April 17,2009.. The cable is classified as “CONFIDENTIAL” and written by the Ambassador Robert O. Blake

Extracts from the cable;

“The April 16-17 visit to Sri Lanka by UNSYG Chief of Staff Vijay Nambiar yielded mixed results. After a one-on-one breakfast meeting with President Rajapaksa on April 17, Nambiar reported that Rajapaksa had left only a slim opening for the UN to pursue the release of civilians by the LTTE as part of the ICRC’s regular visits to the safe zone to evacuate wounded. In a subsequent lunch hosted by the Foreign Minister for Nambiar attended by Ambassador, the Foreign Ministry clarified that the GSL is prepared to allow a woring-level UN team to go in to the safe zone with th ICRC to explore the possibilities of the LTTE alowing the UN and ICRC to evacuate civilians by ea. He said that if there was any positive response from the LTTE and some civilians were allowed to leave, the GSL ‘would not rule out’ the possibility of a future higher-level UN effort to get larger numbers of civilians out. Both the President and Foreign Minister refused UN, US, EU and Indian suggestions of a humanitarian pause now, arguing that such a pause at this stage would give the LTTE a chance to re-group and forcibly recruit and train more civilians. The Foreign Minister said the GSL would allow short pauses for the delivery of food and medicine, evacuation of wounded, and the working-level UN visit. Ambassador underscored to the Minister the potential serious consequences internationally of pursuing a military option without giving diplomacy a chance. UN Resident Representative Buhne told Ambassador the UN will send a UN security advance team to the safe zone as soon as possible with a view to sending in the working-level team as soon as possible thereafter. COMMENT: Although this outcome was not all that we hoped for, it nonetheless leaves an opening for a possible higher-level UN effort, provided the LTTE cooperates in releasing to the working level UN team at least some civilians as a sign of good faith. In the meantime, the international community must continue to pressure the GSL to agree to a pause and to cease military actions.”

“Ambassador warned the Minister that if the government pursued a military option without first allowing high-level diplomacy a chance, Sri Lanka could expect escalating international criticism and actions to demonstrate the international community’s concern. The Ambassador said such actions could include suspension of aid to Sri Lanka, closer scrutiny of IMF lending, possible war crimes investigations, and perhaps other actions.”

Read the cable below for further details;

VZCZCXRO2918
OO RUEHBI
DE RUEHLM #0431/01 1071129
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 171129Z APR 09 ZDK CTG RUEHSD #            0095 1200207      
FM AMEMBASSY COLOMBO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9816
INFO RUEHBK/AMEMBASSY BANGKOK
RUEHKA/AMEMBASSY DHAKA PRIORITY 1566
RUEHIL/AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD PRIORITY 8558
RUEHKT/AMEMBASSY KATHMANDU PRIORITY 6794
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY 4885
RUEHNE/AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI PRIORITY 2921
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO PRIORITY 4846
RUEHPG/AMEMBASSY PRAGUE PRIORITY 0054
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 3951
RUEHCG/AMCONSUL CHENNAI PRIORITY 9199
RUEHBI/AMCONSUL MUMBAI PRIORITY 6512
RUEHON/AMCONSUL TORONTO PRIORITY 1053
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK PRIORITY 1098
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA PRIORITY 3423
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/CDR USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 COLOMBO 000431 

SIPDIS 

STATE FOR SCA/INS AND PRM
STATE ALSO PASS USAID FOR AID/W AND ANE/SCA
USAID ALSO FOR DCHA/FFP (DWORKEN), DCHA/OFDA
(CONVERY/THAYER/KERR)
BANGKOK FOR USAID/DCHA/OFDA (WBERGER)
KATHMANDU FOR USAID/DCHA/AFDA MROGERS AND POL (ESEN)
GENEVA FOR NKYLOH
USUN NEW YORK FOR ECOSOC (DMERCADO)
SECDEF FOR OSD - POLICY
PACOM ALSO FOR J-5
PRAGUE FOR A/S BOUCHER 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/17/2019
TAGS: PREL PREF PHUM MOPS EAID UNGA CE
SUBJECT: SRI LANKA: VISIT BY UNSYG CHIEF OF STAFF NAMBIAR
YIELDS MIXED RESULTS 

COLOMBO 00000431  001.3 OF 005 

Classified By: Ambassador Robert Blake for reasons 1.4 (b and d) 

1.  (C)  SUMMARY:  The April 16-17 visit to Sri Lanka by
UNSYG Chief of Staff Vijay Nambiar yielded mixed results.
After a one-on-one breakfast meeting with President Rajapaksa
on April 17, Nambiar reported that Rajapaksa had left only a
slim opening for the UN to pursue the release of civilians by
the LTTE as part of the ICRC's regular visits to the safe
zone to evacuate wounded.  In a subsequent lunch hosted by
the Foreign Minister for Nambiar attended by Ambassador, the
Foreign Ministry clarified that the GSL is prepared to allow
a woring-level UN team to go in to the safe zone with th
ICRC to explore the possibilities of the LTTE alowing the UN
and ICRC to evacuate civilians by ea.  He said that if there
was any positive response from the LTTE and some civilians
were allowed to leave, the GSL "would not rule out" the
possibility of a future higher-level UN effort to get larger
numbers of civilians out.  Both the President and Foreign
Minister refused UN, US, EU and Indian suggestions of a
humanitarian pause now, arguing that such a pause at this
stage would give the LTTE a chance to re-group and forcibly
recruit and train more civilians.  The Foreign Minister said
the GSL would allow short pauses for the delivery of food and
medicine, evacuation of wounded, and the working-level UN
visit.   Ambassador underscored to the Minister the potential
serious consequences internationally of pursuing a military
option without giving diplomacy a chance.  UN Resident
Representative Buhne told Ambassador the UN will send a UN
security advance team to the safe zone as soon as possible
with a view to sending in the working-level team as soon as
possible thereafter.  COMMENT:  Although this outcome was not
all that we hoped for, it nonetheless leaves an opening for a
possible higher-level UN effort, provided the LTTE cooperates
in releasing to the working level UN team at least some
civilians as a sign of good faith.  In the meantime, the
international community must continue to pressure the GSL to
agree to a pause and to cease military actions.  End Summary. 

Meeting with Defense Secretary
------------------------------ 

2.  (C) UN Resident Representative Neil Buhne briefed
Co-Chair Ambassadors April 17 on UNSYG Chief of Staff Vijay
Nambiar's meeting the previous day with Defense Secretary
Gothabaya Rajapaksa.  Gothabaya said he opposed a
humanitarian pause on the grounds that the LTTE had allowed
virtually no civilians to leave the safe zone during the
48-hour pause earlier in the week.  He indicated that
military forces are now preparing to enter the safe zone in
an effort to separate LTTE cadres from civilians.  He
insisted that military actions would be conducted with
precision to minimize civilian casualties.  Gothabaya
considered that the LTTE had been severely weakened and were
left with only approximately 100 hard core cadres in the safe
zone.  (Comment: we believe this underestimates LTTE
strength.  Army Commander Fonseka told Ambassador and DATT
last week that the LTTE still had 600-700 hard core fighters
and 300 Sea Tigers.  Further, it seems unlikely that only 100
cadres would be in a position to prevent the departure of
tens of thousands of civilians who want to leave while 

COLOMBO 00000431  002.4 OF 005 

continuing to mount stiff opposition to the Army's attempts
to penetrate the safe zone.) 

3.  (C) Nambiar then joined the Co-Chair Ambassadors after
coming directly from a one-on-one breakfast meeting with
President Rajapaksa.  He reported that the President strongly
opposed any extension of the humanitarian pause.  He insisted
that any pause would only give the LTTE an opportunity to
regroup and rearm.  Nambiar countered that a military
operation that produced large civilian casualties would be a
public relations disaster for the government and play
directly into the hands of the LTTE.  The President replied
that he was fully aware of the importance of preventing
civilian casualties, but was simply unwilling to give the
LTTE a new lease on life, adding "we have the LTTE where we
want them."  He acknowledged that Tamils must be part of a
future political process and for this reason the government
would make every effort to minimize civilian casualties.  The
President claimed that the attacks launched on April 16
occurred outside the safe zone. 

4.  (C) The President voiced strong opposition to a possible
UN role in negotiating a humanitarian pause or a surrender by
the LTTE, asking, "how can the UN consider having contact
with a terrorist organization?"  He categorically ruled out
the possibility of the UN entering into negotiations directly
with Prabhakaran.  Nambiar replied that an envoy's role would
be limited to achieving the specific humanitarian objective
of persuading the LTTE to allow trapped civilians to leave
the safe zone and such an effort would be fully coordinated
with the government.  The President insisted that there was
no guarantee that the LTTE would release civilians and that
there were clear indications that the LTTE would not
cooperate in a release. 

5.  (C) The one area in which the President gave any ground
at all was his willingness to consider a UN role (which he
did not specifically define) in a possible ICRC evacuation of
civilians by sea.  He conceded that the involvement of the
UN, side by side with the ICRC, might possibly persuade more
civilians to try to leave the safe zone.  (Comment: The ICRC
is already evacuating wounded civilians by sea, and the
President did not discuss what additional assets would be
used to effect a larger scale sea evacuation.  In addition,
the LTTE has been strictly controlling which and how many
civilians it has allowed to leave by ICRC flagged vessels,
and has given no indication that it would be inclined to
significantly increase these numbers.) 

Government Moderates Its Position
--------------------------------- 

6.  (C) The government moderated its position somewhat at a
lunch hosted by the Foreign Minister for Nambiar before
Nambiar's departure for Delhi.  The Foreign Minister and
Additional Secretary Prasad Kariyaswam clarified the GSL was
prepared to allow a "working-level" UN team from Colombo to
go in to the safe zone with the ICRC to explore the
possibilities of the LTTE allowing the UN and ICRC to
evacuate civilians by sea.  He and the Minister said that if 

COLOMBO 00000431  003.3 OF 005 

there was any positive response from the LTTE and some
civilians were allowed to leave, the GSL "would not rule out"
the possibility of a future higher-level UN effort to
negotiate an LTTE release of larger numbers of civilians. 

But No Pause
------------ 

7.  (C) The Foreign  Minister continued to maintain that the
GSL could not agree to a humanitarian pause because that
would allow the LTTE to regroup, forcibly recruit and train
new civilians potentially to attack the Sri Lankan military
forces.  The Minister reiterated that the Sri Lankan army
would open up humanitarian corridors to allow civilians to
escape while doing everything possible to avoid civilian
casualties.  Ambassador pointed out that seventy civilians
had been killed on April 16 with many more wounded.  This was
an unacceptably high level of casualties.  The Minster
expressed surprise at the casualty report.  Both the UN and
ICRC confirmed that those were the figures provided by the
make-shift hospital in the safe zone.  The Minister then
raised the familiar GSL question of how the UN and ICRC
distinguished between civilian and combatant casualties.
ICRC Chief Paul Castella responded that many of those being
evacuated by the ICRC are women and children.  Indian High
Commissioner Prasad added that Indian doctors at the Indian
Health facility treating wounded at Pulmoddai had the same
information. 

US Warns of Potential Consequences of Military Option
--------------------------------------------- -------- 

8.  (C) Ambassador took the opportunity to underline the
importance of the GSL supporting a humanitarian pause and a
diplomatic solution.  He pointed out that at present, much of
the world recognizes that the LTTE is holding civilians
against their will.  If the GSL pursues a military option
without allowing a high level UN diplomatic effort to secure
the release of all civilians, the GSL will be seen around the
world as the aggressor and the party responsible for the high
number of civilian casualties that would certainly occur.  He
underlined that the United States and many other countries
are seriously concerned about the already high number of
civilian casualties.  He told the Minister that comparisons
are already being made to what transpired in Rwanda where the
international community did not do enough to prevent a
catastrophe. 

9.  (C) Ambassador warned the Minister that if the government
pursued a military option without first allowing high-level
diplomacy a chance, Sri Lanka could expect escalating
international criticism and actions to demonstrate the
international community's concern.  The Ambassador said such
actions could include suspension of aid to Sri Lanka, closer
scrutiny of IMF lending, possible war crimes investigations,
and perhaps other actions.  EU Head of Mission Savage echoed
the Ambassador's comments, noting the importance of Sri Lanka
protecting civilians and giving the LTTE an opportunity to
surrender.  He said the loss of civilian lives from ongoing
military operations would be a humanitarian and public 

COLOMBO 00000431  004.3 OF 005 

relations disaster for Sri Lanka "which would snatch defeat
from the jaws of victory."  Indian High Commissioner Prasad
agreed and referred to a very tough statement the Indian
Foreign Ministry had issued earlier in the day.  He said
there is "extreme concern" in India about civilian
casualties.  India did not see why further military action
was necessary at this time and supports a humanitarian pause. 

10.  (C) The Foreign Minister assured Prasad that Sri Lanka
is sensitive to Indian and other concerns, but repeated that
a pause would only give oxygen to the LTTE.  He said Sri
Lanka needed the help of the Tamil Diaspora to persuade the
LTTE to release its civilians.  Ambassador briefed the
minister on the results of the meeting Assistant Secretary
Boucher had hosted with American Diaspora representatives.
He explained that the Diaspora had rejected U.S. calls for
them to urge the release of civilians. 

Steps to Enhance Prospects for LTTE Releases
-------------------------------------------- 

11.  (C) Looking ahead to the visit of UN working-level
representatives into the safe zone and possible future
higher-level UN visits, Ambassador suggested that the GSL
could take two important steps to improve chances of the LTTE
agreeing to the release of civilians.  First, the GSL needs
to adopt and implement clear benchmarks and time tables on
such matters as the resettlement of civilians from the camps
in Vavuniya and freedom of movement within the camps.  A few
success stories and clear time tables for implementation of
more successes would bolster IDP, donor and Diaspora
confidence about GSL intentions.  Thus far, such confidence
was waning.  He cited, for example, pledges by the
President's brother and senior Advisor, Basil Rajapaksa, for
significant numbers of IDPs from Vavuniya and Mannar to be
resettled by the end of April.  The GSL would not only not
meet that target, it had no clear time table for when it
might do so. 

12.  (C) The second step that the GSL could take to enhance
prospects for LTTE release of civilians would be for the
President to announce his plans for sharing power with Tamils
and ensuring them a future of respect and dignity within a
united Sri Lanka.  Prasad echoed that would be very important
for India as well.  ICRC Chief Castella added that Basil
Rajapaksa also had pledged in February to allow ICRC access
to all IDP registration sites.  However, the ICRC still did
not have access to Pulmoddai, the first stop for all evacuees
from the safe zone, nor did it have a presence in
Kilinochchi.  ICRC access at both sites would do much to
build confidence in the registration process. 

Comment and Next Steps
---------------------- 

13.  (C) The President's hard line position is likely
motivated in part by his need to play to his southern Sinhala
political base in the elections for the Western Provincial
Council that will take place later this month.  However, his 

COLOMBO 00000431  005.3 OF 005 

visit to Kilinochchi to meet with the troops may have
reinforced his conviction that the government finally has the
LTTE trapped with a military victory in close reach. We are
encouraged that the Foreign Ministry left an opening for a
possible higher-level UN effort, provided the LTTE cooperates
in releasing to the working level UN team at least some
civilians as a sign of good faith.  UN Resident
Representative Buhne told Ambassador the UN will send a UN
security advance team to the safe zone as soon as possible
with a view to sending in the working-level team as soon as
possible thereafter.  In the meantime, the international
community must continue to pressure the GSL to agree to a
pause and cease military actions to allow diplomacy to work.
It is also important that no public mention be made of a
possible UN effort to release civilians, lest Sinhala
nationalists seek to capitalize on the upcoming elections to
force the GSL to back down from even the limited concessions
they have made.
BLAKE
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Latest comments

  • 0
    0

    “Uneducated uncultured rascals” :) :) :) :)

  • 0
    0

    no no Ms Renuka, “Carnival Of Fools” LOL

  • 0
    0

    So, Rajapakse wanted to finish off the LTTE as soon as possible in order to have a new election that only he could actually win. The large number of Tamil civilians that would be killed as a result of this frantic attempt to win the war as soon as possible never entered into the equation.

  • 0
    0

    “Ambassador warned the Minister that if the government pursued a military option without first allowing high-level diplomacy a chance, Sri Lanka could expect escalating international criticism and actions to demonstrate the international community’s concern. The Ambassador said such actions could include suspension of aid to Sri Lanka, closer scrutiny of IMF lending, possible war crimes investigations, and perhaps other actions.”

    BLAKE WAS CORRECT. This uneducated uncultured rascals didn’t care about it. now the whole country has to pay the prize.

  • 0
    0

    This shows that the US was out to get Sri Lanka even before the war ended and was leashed in-waiting like a blood hound if Sri Lanka did not tow the line and went ahead and spoiled it’s plan.

    The last paragraph Shows that the US already tried most of those threats, IMF, GSP, etc. on the economic front, toyed with sanctions, on going twist with war crimes investigations that the US won’t apply to itself and would have succeeded if its own record is right now not in such a quandry, ‘other actions’ could be related to destabilization, which is the US specialty, such as using the US Proxy India against Sri Lanka, some hanky panky in the Maldives which didn’t quite work, unleashing some Islamic Sufi clerics in the Eastern province just after the war and some kind of possible tryst in Nepal in time to come.

  • 0
    0

    Sri Lanka was not too dumb to fall into the hole they fell at night during day time. The objective of the West was always to maintain the balance of power between SL govt and LTTE. So when it comes to a negotiations, government will not have an upper hand.

    Tamil diasopra, West and TNA was always, to use civilians as a bargaining tool for the survival of LTTE.

    Credits should go to President for standing up to this evil. Surely if the diasopra wanted they could urge the LTTE to let the civilian go, We did not hear any such thing even from TNA.

    There are situations that you have to take action when you have to take action. Sri Lanka is not a cradle of democracy, But nobody dies in parcel bombs and it is peaceful and definitely a better place without LTTE.

    Tamil racists must know the Sri Lanka is not available in piece by piece for different ethnicities. It is all of us to share in the same brotherhood. Those who are not willing can leave and find better places than Sri Lanka.

  • 0
    0

    Naturally, the Obama/Hillary administration of USA wanted to “get” Sri Lanka from the very outset, thanks to the bribes offered to them (during the 2008 US Presidential election run-ups) by the Tamil Tiger Terrorist frontline organizations in USA operating under the guise of Tamil diaspora, Tamils for Obama, Tamils for Hillary, etc. So this is their way of reciprocating for these huge “donations”! Hillary in fact is supposed to have “returned” these monies when confronted by some reporters – but Obama has so far been silent on this issue. You can get more information on this matter on line.

  • 1
    0

    Renuka Siriwardena, do you understand English at all ?
    Please read carefully or ask someone to translate the text to understand sinister motive of US & west. If ” The uneducated rascals” agreed & accepted them, we are still in missery of war & LTTE is stronger than ever.
    Please try to understand before comment !

  • 0
    0

    he is the biggest tsarists now living in Sri LANKA

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