India condemns killings of Tamils in Sri Lanka

October 6th, 2008 - 9:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan SinghNew Delhi, Oct 6 (IANS) With the killings of Tamils in Sri Lanka stirring a political storm in Tamil Nadu, India Monday condemned the death of Tamil civilians in the military action against the Tamil Tigers.In the strongest denunciation in recent months of the war in Sri Lanka, New Delhi urged Colombo to show “greater restraint” and voiced “serious concern” over the continuing attacks on Indian fishermen in the sea.

National Security Adviser M.K. Naryaanan summoned Sri Lanka’s acting high commissioner G.G.A.D. Palithagenegoda and conveyed to him India’s “grave concern and unhappiness at the growing casualties of unarmed Tamil civilians as a result of military action”.

“The escalation of hostilities in the north and the resultant fallout was leading to a great deal of concern in India,” the external affairs ministry said in a statement, reporting Narayanan’s meeting with the Sri Lankan diplomat.

Narayanan underlined the need for Sri Lanka to act with “greater restraint and address the growing feeling of insecurity among the minority community.

“To stem the deteriorating humanitarian situation, the need to revive the political process was highlighted. It was essential that vital supplies to the affected population were not disrupted in any manner,” the foreign office added.

He also asked Colombo to restrain the Sri Lankan Navy from such attacks.
Narayanan drew attention to a recent incident in which the Sri Lankan Navy allegedly attacked several Indian fishermen and threatened them with dire consequences.

“This was not in keeping with the spirit of the understanding reached between India and Sri Lanka and recently reiterated in meetings held at the highest levels,” it said.

“The Sri Lankan Navy should cease such attacks and not lose sight of the humanitarian and livelihood dimensions of this issue,” the foreign office said.

New Delhi’s decision to summon the Sri Lankan diplomat came after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh assured Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi that his government would take all steps to stop the “genocide” of Tamils in Sri Lanka.

Karunanidhi has urged the people of Tamil Nadu to write a million letters to the prime minister seeking Indian intervention on behalf of the Sri Lankan Tamils.

The chief minister has also reportedly written to Manmohan Singh and opposed the proposal of joint patrolling by India and Sri Lanka in the sea dividing the two countries.

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