Monday, August 2, 2010

Random News Generator- Sri Lanka

From 1983 to 2009, Sri Lanka was embroiled in a civil war, with the ruling government being challenged by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam- colloquially, the Tamil Tigers. For 26 years, the Tigers sought independence in a new state, Tamil Eelam, on the north and east of Sri Lanka, a vision that led to an insurgency that would eventually claim somewhere between 80-100,000 lives. The Tigers were deemed a terrorist organization by many countries including the United States due to their tactics and actions, chief among them the 1991 assassination of Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, a pioneering moment in the use of suicide bombing. Another suicide bomb would claim Sri Lankan president Ranasinghe Premadasa in 1993. Landmines, the shooting of civilians and their use as human shields, and the use of child soldiers were among the other tactics used.

On May 17, the Tigers conceded defeat; the following day, Tigers leader Velupillai Prabhakaran, who had led his side for the entire conflict, was killed attempting to escape the warzone.

That, however, left about 300,000 civilians- overwhelmingly Tamil- who were detained after the war so that, as the government told it, they could sift through them for any remaining fighters, and also so that some of the approximately 1.5 million landmines planted by the Tigers could be removed. As of this point, they've pulled up about 275,000.

Today in the RNG, 3,000 of these refugees, since allowed to resettle, have been re-evicted from some villages so that new military camps may be set up. The Tamils are seizing on it as an argument that the government is not adequately providing freedom of housing for refugees; the refugees were only released after significant pressure from the international community. The government has said the refugees will be given alternate homes; time will tell on that.

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