Saturday, Sep 18, 2021
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On The Bloodpath Again

As the government exulted over its post-Jaffna domination, a revitalised LTTE strikes back

On The Bloodpath Again
On The Bloodpath Again
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

ON July 23, 1983, a jeep and a truck with 14 soldiers and an officer on a routine patrol from Palali army base in northern Jaffna peninsula were ambushed by about 25 Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) men. Only two soldiers survived. The ambush sparked off a festering ethnic war that has claimed over 50,000 lives and shows no signs of abating 13 years later.

As the then J.R. Jayawardene government dithered over whether to bury the dead in Jaffna to avoid trouble at the funeral, the people who were waiting for the bodies at a cemetery in Colombo, lost their patience. In a week-long frenzy, hundreds of enraged Sinhalese stormed Tamil houses and businesses, killing hundreds and leaving tens of thousands homeless. Most Tamils, who had lived in peace with the majority Sinhalese in the south for generations, fled to the Tamil-dominated north and east of the island. Hundreds of youngsters joined the rebels based in Tamil Nadu, where they were trained and armed by the Indian government.

Every year since then, from middle to end...

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