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 Post subject: Senior Army Intelligence officer shot dead - Updated
 Post Posted: Sun Oct 30, 2005 12:02 pm 
Senior Army Intelligence officer shot dead in Colombo
Assassin was in the car with military sleuth

COLOMBO: Police investigations into Saturday night’s killing of senior military intelligence officer, Lt Col T Rizvi Meedin, have revealed that the shots were fired by a person who was travelling with the officer in his official car.The assassin is believed to be a close associate of the officer. “The shots were definitely not fired from outside,” a well informed source said, adding that the military and police were investigating possible LTTE involvement. The associate and the assassin, identified as a Sinhalese living at Sampur, Trincomalee, are believed to have been with Meedin at the time of the shooting. The sources said that the officer had been shot with a micro pistol, a favourite weapon of LTTE intelligence wing cadres. The military said the assassin is believed to be part of the Colombo underworld working with the LTTE. The underworld is believed to be involved in the assassination of Major Tuan Mutalif also of Military Intelligence, five months ago.

@ SLA / 30Oct2005

Military Police and the KIRIBATHGODA Police immediately commenced investigations in to the pre-dawn assassination of a senior Army Officer at KIRIBATHGODA by unknown persons on Sunday (30) morning.

Lieutenant Colonel T.R. MEEDIN (39) of the Military Intelligence Corps in COLOMBO has reportedly gone out of his residence with some of his friends late night on Saturday (29).

Later one of his friends had telephoned his wife at home and informed that Lt. Col MEEDIN was lying dead near his home at KIRIBATHGODA.

The officer’s wife had then informed the Army Headquarters and a search was conducted. The officer’s car was then located on a lane near his residence. Lt Col MEEDIN had been seated in the driver’s seat and shot on the head.

He was rushed to the COLOMBO National Hospital where he was pronounced dead. He is the father of two children aged 12 and 9.


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 Post subject: Meedin killing: Gang leader arrested
 Post Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2005 1:48 pm 
Meedin killing: Gang leader arrested
Army complains to SLMM

@ DM / Tuesday, November 01, 2005
By Sunil Jayasiri

Police yesterday arrested underworld figure Chamila Roshan alias Chammi from a house at Kadawatha in connection with the killing of Military Intelligence officer Colonel Rizli Meedin.

A senior police official said Chamila was believed to have enticed Colonel Meedin out of his Kiribathgoda house before setting him up for the killing by Ice Manju, a Trincomalee based underworld leader known to be a close associate of the LTTE.

Military spokesman N. Witaranage said the army suspected the LTTE to be behind this assassination since the intelligence officer had been under LTTE threat for a long period.

He said police also arrested four other suspects including a brother of Chamila Roshan and a special police team had been flown to Trincomalee to arrest Ice Manju, who is believed to be under the protection of a well-known politician of the area.

The military spokesman claimed there was evidence the LTTE had given a large sum of money to Ice Manju to kill the officer.

The Army had complained to the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission over last Saturday’s assassination of its top Military Intelligence officer Colonel Rizli Meedin, claiming the killing constitutes a violation of the ceasefire agreement signed between the government and the LTTE.

SLMM Spokesperson Helen Olafsdotti told the Daily Mirror the SLMM too would conduct its own inquiry once police investigations end.

“Enough is enough, these killing must stop and both parties to the conflict must act responsibly”, Ms. Olafsdottir said.

Meanwhile the government too has strongly condemned the killing of Col. Meedin which is the latest in a series of targeted assassinations of key intelligence officers.

Condemning the statement made by UNP leader and presidential candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe that the JVP should be held responsible, JVP propaganda secretary Wimal Weerawansa challenged Mr. Wickremesinghe for a one to one television debate.

Mr. Weerawansa said this was one of the 64 intelligence personnel including the 17th intelligence officer killed after the ceasefire agreement in 2002.

He said it was absurd to accuse the JVP as there was strong evidence of LTTE involvement.

However UNP presidential candidate Ranil Wickremesinghe said that when he requested the government to look into the security lapses which led to the killings of Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and Colonel Muthalif, JVP leaders Somawansa Amarasinghe and Wimal Weerawansa had criticized him and claimed he was trying to whitewash the LTTE.

Mr. Wickremesinghe had said if appropriate action had been taken at that time, it could have prevented the killing of Col. Meedin.


Secret hand behind Murder of Col. Meedin

@ LT / [01st November,2005 - 01:10 S.L.T)

Internal sources of security forces indicate that there is a hidden hand behind Army Commander’s silence about the murder of Colonel T.R. Meedin.

According to these sources it has been established that the murder of Col. Meedin has been committed by the tiger organization. They indicate that the proof for this is that Lieutenant Col. Meedin was posthumously promoted to Colonel and usually this is done only when an Army personnel dies in action or when targeted by terrorists. Also in the funeral speech made by the Army at the funeral of Col. Meedin it was stated that the murder was committed by a terrorist.

Investigations have revealed that supporters of Ariyawathi Galappaththi, an electoral organizer of the UNP for Trincomalee District are connected to the killing. Already ‘Ice Mahinda’, one of the supporters, has been arrested and is being interrogated. According to security sections information has been received that the other suspect is hiding in Sampur area under the protection of wanni tiger organization. Hence, security sections believe that the LTTE and Ariyawathi Galappaththi, electoral organizer of the UNP are behind the murder of Lieut. Col. Meedin.

Security sections point out that Col. Meedin had death threats from tiger terrorists as he was attached to intelligence units. When all these are considered, the murder had been definitely committed by tiger terrorists say security sections. However, Army Commander maintaining silence about the murder may be due to political influence suspect security sections.

Security sections believe that Army Commander maintains silence about the murderers as evidence points to supporters of the UNP as those involved in the murder of the intelligence officer.


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 Post subject: Meedin killing - Ice Manjula is the main suspect
 Post Posted: Wed Nov 02, 2005 12:09 pm 
Meedin killing - Ice Manjula is the main suspect
Police believe Chumley misleading them

@ The Island / 01 November, 2005
by Norman Palihawadana


Police believe that the Chumley, who they are presently grilling over the killing of Lt. Col. Tuan Meedin, is attempting to mislead them.

"After shooting Lt. Col. Tuan Meedin, ‘Ice Manjula’ started running away but I do not know where he went" Chumley has told the police. But the investigator shave come to the conclusion that Chumley, once a resident of Trincomalee and believed to be the person who introduced Lt. Col. Meedin to Ice Manjula, the main suspect, is misleading them.

Ice Manjula, police said, was a man with links with the LTTE and an underworld leader of Trincomalee who has been responsible for extortion and murder cases in his hometown.

Immediately after Lt. Col. Meedin was shot Chumley had gone to the home of one of his friends at Kadawatha near the 9th Mile Post on the Kandy Road and when police raided the friends house, Chumley had got out through the kitchen and started running but was caught.

A few hours before the shooting took place, Chumley and Ice Manjula had attempted to find lodging for a Tamil youth in a hotel at Kiribathgoda but had been turned down.

Chumley had also told the police that he telephoned the home of Lt. Col Meedin and informed his family about the shooting and that he went towards Mahara after making the call. Police are continuing to question the suspect as he may be aware where Ice Manjula is hiding.

A number of police teams have been detailed to track down Ice Majula and the police do not rule out that he may have fled to a LTTE controlled area. Police are continuing to question a number of persons in the Kiribathgoda area including two brothers of Chumley.


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 Post subject: Meedin killing: Predator becomes the prey
 Post Posted: Sun Nov 06, 2005 2:52 pm 
Meedin killing: Predator becomes the prey

Inside the Meedin household they sat together. Lt. Col. Meedin was in the middle whilst the two flanked him on either side. Chaminda alias "Ice Manju" looked nervous. He did not take off the cap he was wearing. Instead he lowered the hood to prevent showing his entire face.

@ Source: Sunday Times / Sunday, November 6, 2005

It was past 8.30 p.m. on Saturday (October 29) when Lt. Col. Tuan Rizli Meedin heard someone tap on the gate outside his house at the National Housing Scheme, Third Lane, Kiribathgoda.

The visitors he was expecting for dinner had arrived or so he thought.
He looked out of the front door and realised it was not them. "Enda, Enda (Come, Come)," he exhorted when he saw his friend Chamley Dissanayake. "Chaminda has come to see you," declared Chamley as the duo walked in. Lt. Col. Meedin rushed into his bedroom to wear a T-shirt. He was in a pair of shorts.

Image

Andrahennedige Chaminda Roshan alias "Ice Manju" was a businessman living in Trincomalee. Among other things, he sold fish including those caught in Tiger guerrilla held areas. He acquired the name "Ice Manju" after he supplied ice to other fish merchants who packed them in crates for transport to Colombo.

Inside the Meedin household they sat together. Lt. Col. Meedin was in the middle whilst the two flanked him on either side. Chaminda looked nervous. He did not take off the cap he was wearing. Instead he lowered the hood to prevent showing his entire face.

Then Lt. Col. Meedin told his wife Shahmina he was going out with his two friends who arrived unexpectedly. He said he would be back soon. He told her to greet the two visitors who were due for dinner and ask them to wait until he returned. His official driver and the two armed Army escorts were told to wait at home. Then he drove off in his official car in the same T-shirt and shorts he wore. Seated next to him in the front seat was Chamley. Seated in the back, behind the driver's seat, was Chaminda.

Later in the night, Shahmina telephoned her husband whom she fondly called "Baba" on his mobile phone. She said his two visitors had arrived. "Ask them to wait," he replied. Sometime later, the visitors were inquiring when Lt. Col. Meedin would return. His eldest daughter Risha (11) telephoned her father around 9.15 p.m. She wanted him to return since the two visitors were waiting for him. But she was advised to tell her mother to serve dinner for them. He said they should eat and he would arrive home soon. But he did not return. The visitors finished their dinner. They told Shahmina "Tell Sir, we waited all this time and left. We will get in touch with him." The hours ticked by.

It was now past midnight. Shahmina was not unduly perturbed. Exigencies did occur frequently and her husband would arrive late to explain. The two daughters, Risha and Sheera (9) had gone to sleep. Shahmina was ending the night's household chores. It was 12.10 a.m. when the telephone rang. She saw on the Caller Line Identification (CLI) system it was the mobile phone of Chamley. She answered. A highly excited Chamley shouted "Sirta Vedi Thiyala (Sir has been shot)." Soon after that, he had cut the line. She could not reach him thereafter.

Shahmina found herself in a helpless situation. Lt. Col. Meedin's brother Brigadier Tuan Fardyle Meedin was away in Jaffna or so she thought. He is the Commanding Officer of the Army's 515 Brigade. So she rang a close relative. The latter soon found out that Brig. Meedin had just arrived in Colombo on home leave. She alerted him at his Narahenpita residence. He rushed to the scene.

It was past 1 a.m. when he located his brother, Rizli's official car some 500 metres from the National Housing Scheme. He lay bleeding with his head resting on the steering wheel. Two bullets had entered his skull. One had remained inside. Another shot had wounded him below the ear. He was rushed to the National Hospital. Within minutes doctors there pronounced him dead. They said he had bled heavily.

That was how Lt. Col. Meedin met with his death. In the first few hours of last Sunday, whilst a nation was asleep, telephone lines of senior officers in the country's defence and security establishment were buzzing with the news. Long time an active intelligence operative having served in hot spots of the North and East, Lt. Col. Meedin had commanded the second battalion of the Military Intelligence Corps (MIC). They were placed in an infantry role in the Jaffna peninsula. Later, he moved to Colombo to become Staff Officer (SO) 1 at the MIC Regimental Headquarters. This headquarters together with the first battalion of the MIC is located somewhere in the City of Colombo.

His role there had been both administrative and training of personnel. But his friends in the intelligence community insist that in Jaffna he did play an intelligence role though his battalion was tasked an infantry role. Similarly, even in his new position as Staff Officer 1, he had engaged in limited intelligence roles. Though not officially, through such activity he had helped colleagues in sharing what he disseminated through his wide circle of contacts. In fact, some colleagues had looked to him for leads. At least one of them who served in Trincomalee had inherited several sources Lt. Col. Meedin had cultivated during a posting in that district.

A full fledged Police investigation is now under way to ascertain how he came by his death. This includes both the intelligence aspects and any other links he may have had with close associates. The fact that there is a plot involving the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in his killing is in no doubt. But investigators have an uphill task in weaving together how it came about and why.

After interviewing members of the Meedin family, Police last Monday arrested Chamley Dissanayake who lived not far away from the National Housing Scheme. This was after they first questioned his two brothers. It transpired that Chamley had gone home and cried before his mother that Lt. Col. Meedin had been shot dead. The story is beginning to unfold though Police have a long way to go. Chamley claimed it was Chaminda who shot at Lt. Col. Meedin from the rear seat. He fired three shots from a 7.62 Micro Pistol. This type of pistol is only used by the LTTE. So far there are no known instances of it being used by any others. The weapon had been brought by Chaminda from Trincomalee and concealed in the base of a pedestal fan in Chamley's house. That was just two days before the murder.

Chaminda had beaten a hasty retreat to Trincomalee. From there, he had slipped into Tiger guerrilla dominated Sampur area. Early this week, rumours had been floated that Chaminda had been shot dead. But authorities have heard through reliable channels that he had found safe haven. It has come to light that he was a close associate of Soosaipillai Joseph Anthonydas alias "Col" Sornam, LTTE Military Wing leader for the Trincomalee district. During his many visits to guerrilla held areas to procure fish, he has had close contacts with him.

Weeks before his murder, reports that Lt. Col. Meedin was a target of Tiger guerrillas had reached the security establishment. So much so, the matter figured briefly during a discussion by the armed forces top brass at the Joint Operations Headquarters (JOH) - the unified command of the Army, Navy, Air Force and Police.

The Sunday Times learnt Lt. Col. Meedin was warned on October 21 of a Tiger guerrilla threat to murder him. Though such a warning was not accompanied by specific details of the plot, he was told that his circle of contacts had been infiltrated. Some persons were identified. But this senior intelligence officer found it difficult to believe the people whom he associated with would turn traitor to him. He had been convinced they were helping him.

He confessed to a close friend and colleague who was among those who gave him the warning "Don't worry, I know what I am doing. I am careful. I am trying to get at Sornam. I am running him. This guy has promised he would kill him." The reference was to Chaminda. Instead, it now transpires that Chaminda had plotted to kill the handler. Was Chaminda throughout a double agent? Lt. Col. Meedin is said to have known him since 1995. Was it a case of the predator ending up as the prey? These questions assume greater importance in the light of another fact. Officially, state intelligence agencies have called a halt to all covert operations since the ceasefire of February 2002. Hence, only the completion of Police investigations can throw more light into the matter.

Like his friend and colleague, the late Major Tuan Nizam Muthaliff (posthumously promoted Lieutenant Colonel), Lt. Col. Meedin (also posthumously promoted Colonel) had ignored a vital requirement which their superiors had wanted followed. This is to ensure they utilised the armed escorts assigned for their protection.

When Lt. Col. Muthaliff was shot dead by a Tiger guerrilla gunman at Elvitigala Mawatha, right opposite an Army camp, he was found to be travelling only with his driver. He had boarded his car from inside an Army housing complex where outsiders could not have seen. The mystery of how the assailants became aware of his unscheduled exit and hurriedly planned the shooting is yet to be resolved by detectives probing the case. It does not take an expert investigator to conclude that someone inside tipped off. That gives rise to a question of infiltration.

Lt. Col. Meedin too failed to use the armed escorts assigned to him. Unfortunately he had also violated a cardinal unwritten tenet of the intelligence community - not to entertain sources at their private residences. Usually they are not expected to even divulge their private residences. In this instance, besides Chamley and Chaminda, the two visitors invited for dinner, it has now transpired, were also informants.

Like in the case of Lt. Col. Muthaliff, a new feature that is disturbing in the murder of Lt. Col. Meedin is the use of civilians in the South in planning and executing murders. It was early this week that the Criminal Investigation Departement (CID) told the Additional Magistrate, Colombo, M. Irzhadeen, that Indurugolla Vithanaratchige Sanjeeva had aided and abetted to kill Lt. Col. Muthaliff. The man, who is being described as a journalist, is the first accused in this case. Similarly, in the killing of Col. Meedin, Police investigations so far has established the connections of both Chamley and Chaminda.


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