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THE ISLAND – 05.06.2012

Repetition of the past?

      By Jehan Perera

“The question is what led to the change in the approach of TNA leader Sampanthan, who raised the Sri Lankan national flag in Jaffna along with the Opposition Leader but warned of his party’s option of supporting secession at his party sessions in Batticaloa  

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THE ISLAND – 06.06.2012

Prabhakaran Paraphrased: The ‘autonomist-secessionist continuum’ in Tamil politics

June 5, 2012, 5:09 pm
By Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka

[The following two paragraphs are from the above titled Article]

They are not indications that we have abandoned our fundamental objectives…In other words – we must prove to the international community that we will never be able to realize our rights within a united Sri Lanka… Although the issue at hand is the same, the prevailing conditions are different. The struggle is the same, but the approaches we employ are different. Our aim is the same, but our strategies are different. The players are the same, but the alliances are different. That is the nature of the Tamil people. Although we still have the same aim, the methods we use are now different…" (Ibid)

How then is one to apply the policy of containment to the Tamil secessionist temptation? It is far too risky to transfer provincial powers through an election to a party, which openly declares that it not only dismisses the 13th amendment as solution; but also dismisses the unitary state as a framework and actually believes that a solution is not possible within a united Sri Lanka. It strategizes to convince the world community of that fact. In short it hopes to convince the world community that a solution for the Tamils is possible only outside a united Sri Lanka, i.e. in a separate, independent state.

If such a party takes power in a Provincial Council it will doubtless feel impelled to push for more from the outset; to create situations of tension and confrontation while it uses the Council as a base for external recognition, which it will doubtless obtain from some quarters and to some degree. The Council may become a beachhead for external forces. If Colombo dissolves an adventurist provincial administration some external elements (such as a legislative assembly of co-ethnics in the sub-region) may recognise the boundaries / borders of the dissolved provincial unit as a basis for an independent state or transitional administration. This is how the former USSR and Yugoslavia broke up.

 

 

 

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