LTTE Activities in South Africa
|South African LTTE Connections Exposed (By By Rohan Gunaratna).|
|Designation of Terrorist Organisations
Briefing by Secretary of State Madeleine K Albright, Washington, DC, October 8, 1997.
......President Kumaratunga also
said that "The LTTE's claim to be a 'liberation organisation' is an insult to
organisations such as the African National Congress and the South West African People's
Organisation, which courageously struggled against minority rule, racism and oppression
and, with equal courage, negotiated the creation of the democratic,
may shift HQ from UK to South Africa
Hindustan Times : 9 September, 1998
say that the LTTE may be shifting its international headquarters from the UK to South
Africa, following the passage of a tough anti-terrorist law by British Parliament last
We wish to bring to Your Excellencys notice the report published in the Hindustan Times of September 8, 1998, which stated that the LTTE (better known to Sri Lankans as Tamil Tiger terrorists) are planning to shift their international headquarters from UK to S. Africa.
This move is a direct result of the new anti-terrorist laws passed by the British Parliament. It is a law that makes it an offence for any group to conspire against another government using Britain as a base. The new law ban even the sending of a fax or e-mail by agents of terrorism in UK. Needless to say that this law has deprived the LTTE of its long-standing base -- a foreign base used by the LTTE agents in UK to fund and organise acts of terrorism against the Sri Lankans who are yearning for peace.
Their latest act of terror was to assassinate the Mayor of Jaffna, P. Sivapalan, on September 11, 1998 when he was attending a conference in the Administrative Centre of Jaffna. Three months ago the LTTE murdered the Mayoress of Jaffna, 62-year-old widow, Sarojini Yogeswaran. She is the first to hold that office in thirteen years. The only crime committed by these two courageous Tamil Mayors was to renounce violence and enter the democratic process by contesting the local council elections held in April this year. The ruthless Tiger terrorists have earlier liquidated 17 elected Parliamentarians, eleven of whom are Tamils. They are targeting their own Tamil people who refuse to toe their political line. These acts of terror are also aimed at preventing the people of Jaffna choosing an alternative leadership to that of the LTTE. Tamil Tiger terrorists are hell bent on suppressing the will of the people and, consequently, subvert the democratic process.
Their main source of strength is derived from their agents abroad who had established their international headquarters in 211, Katherine Road, East Ham, London. Britain finally decided to take firm action against terrorists using their country as a base to destabilise friendly and foreign countries after the horrendous bombing of Omagh by IRA terrorists. It would have been morally indefensible for Britain to take drastic action against the IRA terrorists who were destabilising their country whilst turning a blind eye to similar terrorists destroying other nations. Mounting criticism from Africa (particularly from President Mubarak of Egypt) and Asia (Sri Lanka and India) too accused Britain of giving protection to political criminals who were terrorising Afro-Asian countries.
Besides, Britain could not be seen to be out of step with the rest of the international community who were taking the Tamil Tiger terrorists head-on. In response to requests from Sri Lanka USA has banned the LTTE as a terrorist organisation in 1997. India and Malaysia too has banned the LTTE earlier. Australian government has adopted the policy of refusing to talk to the agents of the LTTE lobbying for support until they renounce violence. Britain is the latest to join the list of growing nations that will take firm action against the LTTE.
In the post-Cold War era separatism tied to terrorism has posed the biggest threat to global peace. The separatist violence of the Tamil Tiger terrorist is no exception. Separatism and terrorism are inseparable. Separatist terrorism in Sri Lanka has already claimed the lives of Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi of India and President Ranasinghe Premadasa of Sri Lanka not to mention the old Tamil leadership, including Appapillai Amirthalingam who was the leader of Tamil parliamentarians.
Terrorism linked to separatism is an evil force that stalks every continent, including Africa. We note that a considerable part of Your Excellencys leadership is now devoted to tackling this threat to African nations. Separatism linked terrorism can thrive only on the support it derives from foreign sources. Your Excellency will agree that separatism can be contained if foreign sources are restrained from collaborating with local groups. This makes it imperative that S. Africa should not be turned into another base to destabilise Sri Lanka.
We understand that the LTTE has influenced a certain section of the Indian population in S. Africa, mostly of Dravidian origin, to lobby on their behalf. If their lobbying succeeds then, we are told, the LTTE will find an alternative base in S. Africa. We are aware that the LTTE had won some support in the past in S. Africa mainly on the basis of a total misrepresentation of the realities of Sri Lankas post-independent history. Without repeating the realities of that history, we wish to state that the international community has now accepted the new measures introduced by President Chandrika Bandaranaikes government to work out an amicable solution. If at this critical stage, the S. African government decides to grant the LTTE another safe haven for them to perpetuate their terrorist acts against another member of the Commonwealth and a pioneering member of the Non-Aligned Movement it would be detrimental to the stability and the progress of South Asia.
The greatest gift that Your Excellency can give to the Sri Lanka is to deny the Tamil Tiger terrorists a base in S. Africa. We, therefore, humbly beg of Your Excellency to consider the plight of the war-weary people of Sri Lanka and reject any proposals to provide a terrorist base for the LTTE in S. Africa. No doubt, Your Excellencys enlightened leadership on this issue will help to end the 14-year-old war in Sri Lanka.
Wishing Your Excellency all success in all endeavours to bring peace and stability to Africa and the rest of the war-torn world.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu urged South Africans of all colours to accept the final report of his truth commission, has come to represent the moral conscience of the Rainbow Nation. ......
Handing over the report of his Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Archbishop Tutu said it was time of South Africa to come to terms with its bloody apartheid past. .........
"Let the waters of healing flow from Pretoria today.... to cleanse our land, to cleanse it's people and to bring unity and reconciliation. We will have looked a beast in the eye.... and holding hands together, black and white, stride together into the future." Archbishop Tutu said when presenting his report yesterday.....
(Reference : The Age dated 31 October 1998)
|S. Africa to look into SL
concerns - FM
The Island : 30 October 1998
The South African government has assured that it will look into concerns expressed by Sri Lanka regarding the possibility of South African soil being used for purposes inimical to Sri Lankan interests, foreign Ministry spokesman Ravinath Ariyasinghe said at yesterdays cabinet press briefing.
He said this assurance was obtained from South Africa's High Commissioner to Sri Lanka with accreditation to New Delhi, Jerry Matsila when he called on President Chandrika Kumaratunga during his recent visit to Sri Lanka.
Ariyasinghe said the South African government sent Matsila to Colombo following concerns expressed by Sri Lanka through its High Commissioner in Pretoria Gamini Munasinghe about serious LTTE activity on South African soil.
Matsila assured both the President and Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar that South Africa will investigate concerns expressed by Sri Lanka including the possibility of the LTTE shifting its operations to South Africa in anticipation of the United Kingdom implementing tough anti terrorist legislation.
He denied Sri Lanka had complained about LTTE links with the African National Congress ( ANC).
'What has been done is to express concerns about links between the LTTE and certain interest groups in South Africa" he added.
investigating alleged Tiger links with ANC activists
Daily News : 7 Nov 1998
South Africa is in the process of investigating allegations that LTTE activists had purchased an aircraft in South Africa and about possible links with certain African National Congress (ANC) activists, South African High Commission's First Secretary (political) C.H. Qomoyi said yesterday.
"The results of these investigations will be revealed to the Sri Lankan government in the near future," he told the media in Colombo. However, investigations so far have failed to establish that an aircraft had been purchased as alleged, he said. Mr. Qumoyi refuted allegations that the South African Government is having close contacts with the LTTE. The South African
Government in which several parties are represented, has no links with the LTTE, he asserted.
A three member delegation of the South African High Commission (based in New Delhi) were in Sri Lanka on an official mission. The delegation led by Ms. R.G.Moloi, Head of the Economic Office also inculded Mr. C. H. Qomoyi, first Secretary (political) and J. Schoeman, third Secretary (political).
The delegation had talks with several Ministers, various political parties and senior Government officials on the implementation of various bilateral agreements.
Mr. Qomoyi said South Africa is a true friend of Sri Lanka and their concern is to work together with Sri Lanka and are looking forward to strengthening trade and bilateral relations between the two countries. In this context, South Africa will enter into several bilateral agreements with Sri Lanka shortly.
"We are keen on signing treaties in areas such as trade and investment, tourism, science and technology and cultural affairs," Ms. Moloi said.
President Nelson Mandela is strong advocate of peace and is very particular about the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka. He has confidence in the Sri Lankan Government and its peace proposals and not in the LTTE activists or any other group, he said.
Mandela willing to act as facilitatorn
South African President Nelson Mandela has expressed his willingness to act as a facilitator if the Sri Lanka Government wishes to initiate talks with the LTTE provided such a request is made through official channels, the South African High Commission's delegation visiting Colombo told the media.
Africa probes Tamil Tiger threat
BBC Africa : 5 Nov 1998
The South African Government is investigating reports that the Sri Lankan Tamil Tiger rebels may be setting up a base in Pretoria because their London offices face closure.
Minister to visit S.Africa
Hindustan Times : 13 Nov 1998
The Sri Lankan Foreign Minister, Mr. Lakshman Kadirgamar, will be in South Africa early next week to continue to press the Mandela regime to curb the activities of the LTTE, which have reportedly acquired serious proportions lately.
strike on LTTE in South Africa Kadirgamar in talks with ANC
Sunday Times : 15 Nov 1998
Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar flew to South Africa yesterday on what has been described as a mission to pre-empt LTTE plans to shift its international political base to that country.
The minister's visit comes in the backdrop of a request by Sri Lanka to South Africa to look into what it believes is heightened LTTE activity in South Africa following tough new anti-terrorism laws coming into place in Britain from where the Tigers directed their international operations.
Mr. Kadirgamar had extensive talks with the visiting British Deputy Foreign Minister Derrek Fatchett earlier this week in Colombo on the new anti-terrorism laws there.
The Foreign Minister will meet leading members of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) during his visit to Pretoria in a move aimed at seeking their support to thwart LTTE activities.
Already South Africa media reports have exposed the existence of LTTE military training camps there, but its High Commission based in New Delhi and over-seeing Sri Lanka, has said the Mandela government will not tolerate such camps, nor will its Government provide any assistance to the LTTE.
For more information on LTTE activities in South Africa, please visit Sub-Page 2
and Regional Implications of the Sri Lankan Tamil Insurgency
LTTE activities in Canada
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