Let humanitarian aid reach the victims!

- The Sudar Oli Editorial

(Auguat 25, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian)
International NGO’s have raised their voices and concern over the human tragedy in Vanni following the two month war between the Sri Lankan forces and the LTTE consequent to which around d 75, 000 people have been displaced from Vanni.

It is estimated that the number of displaced are one third of the population in the LTTE controlled area. It is also reported that more than half of them have been displaced more than once from their areas and that they have been forced to live in open places and under trees.

UN NGO’s, International Red Cross Society, Amnesty International and others have stressed that immediate steps should be taken to alleviate the problems of the displaced people and provide humanitarian aid. The UN, resident representative for Sri Lanka has laid down certain conditions.

He insists that the authorities should relax restrictions in regard to transport and other facilities for the UN NGOs to undertake humanitarian relief. There should be safe no war zones for the displaced to live. The mobility of the people must be permitted.

Although NGO’s have come forward to provide dry food, clothes, temporary tents, medicines , drinking water etc to the 1000’s of displaced people, red tapism is an impediment. On the one hand a war is unleashed on Vanni and on the other hand there is red–tapism being an impediment to provide relief to the displaced.

Will there be a healthy response to these requests or will these requests fall on deaf ears?

(An English translation of the Editorial in the Sudar Oli, a Tamil daily, based in Colombo.)
- Sri Lanka Guardian