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War on LTTE: Ex-UN diplomat slams India’s implicit nod

world Updated: Mar 16, 2012 00:04 IST
Dipankar De Sarkar
Dipankar De Sarkar
Hindustan Times
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A former senior UN diplomat has accused India and other unnamed countries of giving an “implicit green light” to the Sri Lankan government to finish off Tamil Tiger terrorists – a move that led to a large number of civilian deaths.

Sir John Holmes, a British diplomat who was UN under-secretary general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator, told a Channel 4 documentary shown on Wednesday that President Mahinda Rajapaksa was determined to finish off the LTTE at any cost during the final days of the 2009 army assault.

“They didn’t believe anybody in the international community was willing to stop them, and they were right,” Holmes said.

“A lot of governments, including the Indian government because of their own huge Tamil population, wanted to show concern. At the same time there was a sort of implicit green light for the government to finish off the LTTE.”

The documentary film accuses the Sri Lankan President and his brother, defence minister Gotabaya Rajapaksa, of direct responsibility for the shelling of civilians across three no-fire zones.

It also shows what it says are evidence of war crimes committed by Sri Lankan government forces during the assault against the LTTE.