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 Post subject: Karuna returns to Sri Lanka
 Post Posted: Fri Jul 04, 2008 11:17 pm 
Karuna returns to Sri Lanka

Karuna, once a favourite of the LTTE supremo Pirabhakaran, broke away with the LTTE in 2003. TMVP cadres played a major role in Sri Lanka Army's offensive against Tamil Tigers in the eastern province and subsequently TMVPs present leader Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan widely known as Pillayan was appointed as the cheif minister.

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@ BBC Sinhala / 03July2008

Breakaway Tamil Tiger leader, Vinayagamurthi Muralitharan alias Karuna, released from a UK immigration detention centre has reached Sri Lanka.

He was arrested last September on charges of entering the United Kingdom by using a diplomatic passport bearing the name of Kokila Gunawardene

Following a 9 months imprisonment he was detained in a immigration detention centre for the last two months.

British Embassy in Colombo and the Tamil people Liberation Tigers, (TMVP) formed by Karuna after the split with LTTE confirmed Karuna's arrival into Sri Lanka on Thursday.

TMVP Spokesperson,Azad Maulana, told BBC that Col. Karuna spoke to him and other leaders on Thursday morning.

He did not comment on the possible political role that Karuna could play.

Col. Karuna, once a favourite of the LTTE supremo Pirabhakaran, broke away with the LTTE in 2003.

TMVP cadres played a major role in Sri Lanka Army's offensive against Tamil Tigers in the eastern province and subsequently TMVPs present leader Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan widely known as Pillayan was appointed as the cheif minister.



LTTE 'very weak' : Karuna

Karuna appealed to all communities, Sinhala, Muslim and Tamil, to help the government to defeat the LTTE which he described as a 'brutal terrorist group'.

@ BBC / 04 July, 2008

The government forces are on the verge of defeating the Tamil Tigers, the former deputy commander of the LTTE said.

In an exclusive interview with BBC Sandeshaya, Vinayamurthi Muralitharan known as Karuna Amman said the Tamil Tigers are 'very weak' in the face of continuous military offensive.

"The LTTE are now only maintaining a defence line. They can't launch any offensive. They are very weak now," col. Karuna said.

However, it will take some time for the military to defeat the LTTE.

"It will not happen in the next few months. We have to work together to win this war," he told BBCSinhala.com.

Karuna Amman was deported from UK, where he served a prison sentence for immigration offences, to Sri Lanka on Wednesday.

It was his first media interview since arriving in Colombo on Thursday.

Replacing Chief Minister

He appealed to all communities, Sinhala, Muslim and Tamil, to help the government to defeat the LTTE which he described as a 'brutal terrorist group'.

The leader of the Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Puligal (TMVP) said he is 'very happy' that his deputy is appointed as the Chief Minister of the Eastern Provincial Council. (EPC)

Col. Karuna insisted that he has no plans to replace TMVP deputy leader, Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan known as Pillayan, as the new Chief Minister.

"We are not only representing the eastern Tamils. We represent all Tamils in Sri Lanka," he said.

Mr. Pillayan earlier told BBC Tamil service that he would offer the post to Karuna Amman, if he returns to the country.

Meeting President Rajapaksa

Karuna also revealed that he would meet President Rajapaksa and the ministers in his administration in the near future.

"We are a party in the government alliance. Everybody knows that," he said.

International human rights groups urged British authorities to charge Karuna for war crimes while he was in British custody.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has strongly criticised decision by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) that there was no sufficient evidence to charge him.

Director General of Amnesty International (AI) earlier told BBC Sandeshaya that Sri Lanka government should charge him for alleged gross human rights violations.

Karuna and TMVP are accused of serious rights violations committed while he was a senior leader of the LTTE and later with working as a paramilitary supporting Sri Lanka military.

Karuna says he was only following orders by LTTE leaders, Velupillai Prabhakaran and Pottu Amman.


Related:
:roll: Govt smuggled Karuna to London on forged DPL passport
:roll: Sivanesathurai Chandrakanthan alias Pillayan


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