Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa has said that Sri Lanka’s military victory over the LTTE offers lessons for the international Community.
In an interview with “The Asian Age”, the Defence Secretary pointed out that Sri Lanka did not neglect in providing humanitarian aid on behalf of the people while operations were carried out against the terrorists. Military operations and humanitarian assistance ran parallel. He said they had no fire zones and restrictions on the use of heavy weapons. This is not normally done anywhere in the world in this type of situation. But Sri Lanka did it.
The Defence noted that there were reports that certain LTTE leaders during the last stages of the battle came to surrender and that they were murdered. However, no information was intimated to the Government that they were to surrender. The Government’s sole desire was to rout the LTTE and liberate the innocent Tamil civilians. More time was taken to defeat the LTTE because of the civilians.
If the government had no such concerns, they could have bombarded the place using all artillery and walked through within a day. However, they took two months. So the international community must consider the risks that were taken. During the conflict period through the few decades large numbers in the North migrated to other countries. But if they come, they are most welcome. The Defence Secretary said they considered that they must bring their know-how, knowledge and invest their wealth in the country because development is the main requirement.