Sri Lanka probes mil­i­tary links to vi­o­lence

The Myanmar Times - - World -

SRI Lanka is in­ves­ti­gat­ing whether the army was in­volved in a re­cent wave of vi­o­lence in the mi­nor­ity Tamil heart­land of Jaffna, a min­is­ter said yes­ter­day.

Ju­nior de­fence min­is­ter Ruwan Wi­je­w­ar­dene said a sol­dier was among those ar­rested by po­lice in con­nec­tion with the lat­est vi­o­lence in Jaffna, the epi­cen­tre of the coun­try’s long sep­a­ratist war which ended in 2009.

Law and Or­der Min­is­ter Sa­gala Rat­nayaka said 38 men had been ar­rested, in­clud­ing a sol­dier at­tached to the elec­tri­cal and en­gi­neer­ing unit of the army.

The army re­placed its in­tel­li­gence chief two weeks ago af­ter the gov­ern­ment ac­cused the mil­i­tary of back­ing a Tamil gang ter­ror­is­ing civil­ians in Jaffna.

Mr Wi­je­w­ar­dene said the mil­i­tary was not di­rectly in­volved with the group, but did not rule out the pos­si­bil­ity of rogue el­e­ments.

Last month’s fa­tal po­lice shoot­ing of two Tamil stu­dents in Jaffna have raised ten­sions in the north, where res­i­dents suf­fered years of ha­rass­ment from the Sin­halese-dom­i­nated mil­i­tary. –

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