The Sri Lankan government “do not want to punish the offenders who committed war crimes – including torture, rape, plunder and acted brutally, calling them heroes instead” the chief minister of the Northern province, C V Wigneswaran told the Huffington Post in an interview this week.
Asked for his opinion on Colombo’s seeming lack of seriousness in implementing a credible transitional justice program, Mr Wigneswaran said,
“Do you think the government would ever be serious in furthering the transitional justice process? They are good at talking. They will go on talking and the world community and Tamils would be fooled again and again.”
“Reform in the sense of transitional justice could only be obtained by pressure from the international community,” he added.
Mr Wigneswaran also criticised the government’s ongoing militarisation of the Tamil homeland, stating that the government was instituting a well planned scheme to ensure the military was kept there “forever”.
“The idea is to keep the armed forces forever. So the army has come up with a brilliant idea. Let us help the local population by building up houses and toilets and whatnot and earn the approval and appreciation of the people. Then we could continue to stay here forever. Mind you it is the same soldiers who brutally killed, maimed, raped and plundered our people earlier who have now taken a new avatar.”
“So long as a unitary constitution remains we would not be able to oust the armed forces. The government is finding many ways to avoid giving us a federal constitution. Unless federalism brings us powers to decide on our security and well-being, the armed forces will continue to occupy our territories.”