Jayasuriya said that during a visit he had undertaken to the North, he found that a feeling of insecurity and possible intimidations prevail very strongly in the Northern Tamil psyche with armed security and para military groups moving freely in those areas.
“Their past traumatic and frightening experiences with the military occupying North and East do not allow them to feel secure and safe. It is known and was discussed openly how the Rajapaksa regime used both the security forces and para military groups to intimidate, threaten and stop people voting during the Northern PC elections. Northern Province Governor, an ex army officer escorted by armed security, openly identified himself with the Rajapaksa campaign. Even candidates like Ananthi Sasitharan was attacked during that election campaign and she told media she fears death,” he said.
He said that in addition to the near impossible task that the election commission is conducting, the Election Commissioner must immediately intervene to prevent high handed threatening intervention by the military and their covert support for para military groups.
“What is most important right now is to allow the Tamil people to go to polls with confidence and use their sovereign right to vote as they wish. That demands the military to be kept in barracks,” he added. (Colombo Gazette)