Letter to Representative of the World Bank

On behalf of Patriotic National Movement

Peter Harold,
Resident Representative of the World Bank for Sri Lanka,

Dear Sir,

Handing over a Tamil copy of the report for 2004 of the development plans including the continuation of humanitarian aid to the Tigers’ Organization

We were deeply worried about on press reports about your organization published in several Sri Lankan newspapers on 21st July 2004. The above report said that a Tamil copy of the report for 2004 on development plans including the continuation of the humanitarian aid was handed over by you to the political wing leader of the Wanni Tigers’ Organization Thamil Selvam at Kilinochchi. The above reports quoted Thamil Selvam saying in a speech accepting the report that the Tigers were prepared to face a war at any time if the government was getting ready for a war. These reports further said that Thamil Selvam quipped that if the government was going to hold a referendum on the Interim Self Governing Authority, they would have to resort to a war again. We do not know how far these press reports are true. But we assume them true unless you or the Wanni Tigers’ Organization reject them as false.
World Bank is a lending organization recognized throughout the world. It often deals with sovereign states. Never before have we heard about the World Bank extending financial aid to a terrorist organization anywhere in the world or officially presenting its reports to such organizations. There could be criticisms on the conduct of the World Bank, but never has there been such a criticism in respect of the World Bank.

What you are doing today in Sri Lanka is that same thing that we have never heard of before. As the ban on the LTTE was lifted by the previous UNP government it is true that it is now not an officially proscribed organization in Sri Lanka. But that does not mean that the LTTE has come to the democratic mainstream. As you know it is an armed organization that conscripts child soldiers into their fighting units. Reports released recently by the UNICEF and the Amnesty International had stressed this fact. We hope you are aware of the fact the Tigers’ Organization had attacked the NGO “Hello Trust” on 24th June It is a well known fact that several vehicles belonging to that NGO were badly damaged.
It can be no secret that the LTTE had sent the woman suicide bomber to assassinate the Sri Lankan government minister Douglas Devananda. This is an internationally famous incident as she missed her target and blew herself up killing several police officers.
No new criteria are necessary to understand that an organization still employing suicide bombers to get rid of their key targets is a terrorist organization whether it is proscribed by law or not. Not any sensible person will find it difficult to understand it. LTTE continued to kill members of the government armed forces and civilians throughout the cease fire both in Colombo and the Eastern province. On the other hand it is a separatist organization that seeks to divide an internationally recognized sovereign state, Sri Lanka, and establish a separate state on one third of the land in Sri Lanka. We need not recall the fact that the LTTE has assassinated several state leaders as well as leaders of several famous political parties and in particular the former pri minister of the neighbouring state of India, Rajive Gandhi. You cannot not know that the LTTE does not allow any alternative opinion or organization to raise its head and terrorise people in the North and East at gun point. Even if you nothing of that we do not believe that you do not know that India has named LTTE a proscribed, terrorist organization within their country for killing its beloved leader, Rajiv Gandhi and LTTE leader Velupille Prabakaran and Intelligence leader Pottu Amman have been sentenced to death by and Indian court. You also may know that LTTE is still a proscribed organization in United States of America and several western countries irrespective of whether you know the Indian government’s stand on the LTTE.
In this backdrop we cannot understand why you went to Kilinochchi to meet Tiger leaders there and submitted Tamil copies of your official reports to them. Is it your intention to help separatist Tigers get international recognition despite their being responsible for the above mentioned incidents and a lot more things we have not pointed out?. Or else are you in a state where you cannot get rid of the tricky diplomacy you were made to practice during the previous UNP regime. If you thought it necessary to officially give the Tamil translation of your report to the relevant authorities, you could at least have submitted it to all Tamil parliamentarians representing North East and the rest of the country. We could bear with it even with reluctance if you had submitted it to the puppet parliamentarians of the LTTE who were elected in a corrupt election manipulated by the armed force of the LTTE. It’s unlikely that you do not know what the election monitoring mission of the European Unity had said about the 2004 parliamentary election in the North and East.
Therefore what you have done cannot be justified by any means. You have come forward to gain recognition for a terrorist organization operating to split Sri Lanka by employing suicide bombers and assassinating their political opponents. You have knowingly or unknowingly contributed to wash the blood stains off the LTTE body, which is presently being done by certain international organizations including Norway and a few other countries. We who strongly believe that all the dollars you have lent cannot cost the sovereignty of Sri Lanka, will not tolerate this at all.
While accepting the Tamil translation of your report what has Thamil Selvam has said in your own presence? Isn’t it that they would resort to a war if the government decided to seek public opinion on the Interim Self Government Authority in a referendum. One of their puppets MP S K Gajendran told in the parliament recently that if the government did not do what they wanted they would send 22000 soldiers serving in the North to Colombo in coffins. Does this murderous threat imply their quest for peace? It should be clear to you that only those with a terrorist mentality and none who practice democratic conventions will reject an opinion which will be testified in a referendum, a true reflection of the public will. You have there given the Tigers an opportunity to threat ,before your eyes, a democratically elected government which amidst immense difficulties makes a serious effort to bring about honorable peace.
We have a lot of criticisms about your economic policy. But we have never branded your organization as a one which promotes terrorism and separatism. You must have dealings on loans and aid with a government elected by the people of a country and not with an armed organization which celebrate the heroism of suicide bombers. We strongly condemn this act you have done in total disregard of the standards of diplomacy and we would like to emphasize that it is your duty responsibility to refrain from such acts that will harm the sovereignty of Sri Lanka and its territorial intergrity. We would be very grateful to you if you let us know comments on this matter.

Thanking you,
With full of patriotism for the motherland
Rev. Elle Gunawansa Thero
Doctor Gunadasa Amarasekara
MP Wimal Weerawansa
Deputy Minister Arjuna Ranatunga
Professor Upali Jayasekara
Professor Granwil Dharmawardhana

(on behalf of Patriotic National Movement)
22th June 2004

Copies to
1. Praful Patel, the representative of the World bank for south Asian region
2. All media



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