from The Sunday Observer, Sri Lanka
Defence Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa today denied claims by the US Terror Alert that terrorist outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba is using Sri Lanka as a base to attack India. “There is no truth whatsoever. The allegations are totally misleading and incorrect,” he told the Observer Online a short while ago.
Defence Secretary Rajapaksa said Sri Lanka will never leave room for terrorism and would not allow any foreign militant group to operate on local soil. “We will never let that happen and would always support the battle against global terrorism,” he said.
Earlier, the Indian Express, reported that US agencies have passed intelligence inputs to India that the Lashkar-e-Toiba already has some 200 cadres present in the island nation who plan to use Sri Lanka y as a “staging ground” to enter India.
“According to US inputs,Lashkar’s 200 cadres in Sri Lanka were possibly “planners and facilitators” currently engaged in laying a network before more operatives can be sent for specific attacks in India. In fact, these inputs suggest that Lashkar operatives were being specifically trained to be sent to Sri Lanka,” the report said. The US assessment, in fact, suggests that Lashkar is looking to strengthen its presence in Nepal and Maldives, too. While Nepal has been used to carry out attacks in India, Maldives provides new options if operatives have to reach peninsular India where many “high-value targets” are. - courtesy: http://www.sundayobserver.lk -