UN deplores abductions in Sri Lanka | india | Hindustan Times
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UN deplores abductions in Sri Lanka

The UN reaction came after the number of missing persons went up from five to ten, reports PK Balachandran.

india Updated: Feb 01, 2006 21:50 IST

The United Nations on Wednesday "deplored" the reported abduction of relief workers belonging to the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), as the number of missing persons went up from five to ten.

"These are humanitarian aid workers who devote their professional lives to serving those in need. Therefore, they have the right to respect and protection," the UN agencies stationed in Sri Lanka said in a press release.

Five persons, including a girl, were abducted on January 30. The very next day, five more persons, including three women, were abducted.

The LTTE and TRO have accused the anti-LTTE Tamil paramilitary groups aligned with the Sri Lankan army of carrying out the abductions.

TRO is an unofficial front organisation of the LTTE and has therefore incurred the wrath of anti-LTTE groups, whether Tamil or Sinhala.

But TRO is registered as an NGO in Sri Lanka and is recognised by international humanitarian organisations, including those belonging to the UN.

It is internationally recognised as an efficient, goal-oriented outfit.

In the first case of abduction on January 30, the missing persons were financial accounts trainees.

In the second case on January 31, the abducted belonged to the TRO's Pre-School Education Development Centre (PSEDC).

The abductions had taken place while the personnel were on their way from the eastern district of Batticaloa to Kilinochchi, the LTTE's HQ in the Wanni in north Sri Lanka.

The LTTE's Peace Secretariat's head, S Pulidevan, had said on Tuesday that the abductions could thwart the planned talks with the Sri Lankan government on the implementation of the 2002 ceasefire agreement.

The talks are to be held in Geneva in the second half of February.