Former Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa on Thursday welcomed the appointment of a three-member UN panel to look into rights abuses and war crimes in Sri Lanka.
"It shows that, at a time when the Tamil Nadu government and its Chief Minister M Karunanidhi have forsaken the Tamil people of Sri Lanka, the world peace body and its head, Ban Ki Moon, have not. The act of the UN chief gives us confidence that all is not lost for the Tamil race and people," Jayalalithaa said in a statement.
Criticising the Sri Lankan government's decision to deny visas to the UN delegation, she said: "The act smacks of guilt. If the Mahinda Rajapakse government has nothing to hide, it should have no objection to allowing the UN delegation free access to their country."
She said the panel announced by Moon comprises three eminent legal experts - from Indonesia, the US and South Africa. If given free access, they would unearth several skeletons from Rajapaksa's cupboard.
According to her, more than 50,000 Tamil civilians were killed in just two days of the military offensive against the Tamil Tigers that ended with the group's destruction in May last year.