Sri Lanka: Talk, Talk and Stalemate

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March 18, 2006: The LTTE is taking the war overseas, by using strong arm tactics against many of the 800,000 Tamils living overseas. The LTTE is banned (as a terrorist organization) in the U.S., but has been raising money there anyway. The extortion and threats are more openly practiced in Europe, where governments are threatening to ban the LTTE. The LTTE splinter organization, the Karuna Group, is also raising money among Tamils overseas, but it apparently not using as much of the rough stuff. The LTTE is demanding money for a "final battle" with the Sri Lankan government, after which the island of Sri Lanka will be partitioned into Tamil and Sinhalese portions. The majority (and native) Sinhalese refuse to partition their island.

March 17, 2006: The LTTE has become more active with propaganda operations intended to change worldwide opinion that considers them terrorists. In addition to a lot of press releases, they are also staging demonstrations in territory they control.

March 13, 2006: In another feel-good measure, the navy will ease fishing restrictions off the northeast coast. The LTTE had been using fishing boats to smuggle in weapons, so the navy had restricted the movement of fishing boats off the northeast coast.

March 5, 2006: Soldiers killed two LTTE gunmen, and the LTTE claimed it was all the army's fault, while the army said the LTTE started it. The LTTE continue to complain of numerous army attacks, but this was one of the few were Norwegian truce observers could find bodies.

February 25, 2006: Peace talks ended in Switzerland. All that was agreed to was to hold more talks next month, and not to resume fighting.

February 18, 2006: As a good will gesture, the LTTE released a policeman they were holding prisoner. A day earlier, the government released four LTTE members.

 

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