‘104 LTTE cadres poisoned to death at Sri Lanka rehab centres’

Startling accusation by Tamil politicians who say the ex-combatants had claimed physically disability as a result.

Sri Lanka’s Tamil politicians have alleged that over 100 LTTE cadres at rehabilitation centres were injected with poison leading to their deaths, prompting the government to reject their claims on Thursday.

Politicians of the main Tamil party Tamil National Alliance (TNA) politicians and the Tamil media claimed the deaths of some 104 ex-combatants who had allegedly been given poisonous injections. They had claimed physical disability due to the injections being given to them.

Northern Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran has said that the U.S. Air Forces medical team, currently in the Tamil-dominated north, will examine the former rehabilitated LTTE cadres, who he alleged had fallen sick because they were injected with poisonous substances at government detention or rehabilitation centres.

False allegations: Ruwan Wijewardene

State Minister of Defence Ruwan Wijewardene rejected the claims as “false allegations.”

“It is sad to hear some politicians in the North making false allegations when the government is making a genuine effort to resolve the issue of the Northern people.

“Anyone, including those from the international community, can visit the rehabilitation camps after obtaining permission from the government and see for themselves the work that is being done,” he said, referring to claims by members of the Northern Provincial Council.

Government spokesman and Minister of Health Rajitha Senaratne also dismissed the claims on Wednesday and said local doctors could be asked to examine them.

Domestic experts can verify causes

BY Kavindya Chris Thomas

Cabinet Spokesman Rajitha Senaratne claimed yesterday that there was no need to bring in international experts to identify the cause of death relating to several former LTTE cadres in the Northern Province who had died recently, shortly after release from incarceration.

He made this statement in response to a proposal made by Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran’s mooting invitations to international medical experts to inquire into the allegedly suspicious deaths of several former LTTE cadres due to an unknown disease. Several reports had previously claimed that the deaths had been allegedly caused by toxic vaccines.
Minister Senaratne dismissed the Chief Minister’s proposal saying that there is no need to bring in international assistance when there are more than enough local experts who can identify the cause of the deaths.
“If by any chance local experts are unable to identify the causes of those deaths, the government can ask for international assistance and bring in a team of medical experts to carry out an inquiry. But at the moment, there is no need for such a thing,” he opined.