Humanitarian work will suffer!

– Sudar Oli Editorial

(September 11, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Although the government wanted people in the LTTE controlled areas in Vanni to vacate forthwith, the people’s response was rather very poor.

Now, there is a shock treatment by which all NGOs have been told to leave the Vanni area. The government has issued notice to all humanitarian agencies operating in the Vanni area to move out due to security reasons.

This has been conveyed to the NGO’s at a crucial time when they are doing yeoman service to about 200, 000 displaced people, when they are performing humanitarian help to the unfortunate ones who are in a great tragedy following the on going war.

It must be pointed out here that barring all foreign aid workers from the area will put the civilians in great need at a grave risk in respect of their health and safety.

This is a move to halt all humanitarian assistance to the people, who are the victims of the war, while it is the sacred responsibility of all those engaged in the war to ensure that humanitarian help reaches them. It is in fact a gross violation of human rights and it is in a way a challenge to the UNHCR. Tamils fear that this is a subtle move to prevent the IC from knowing the truth in reality in the war area.

If the international Community is sensitive to the sufferings of the unfortunate ones in the Vanni, if the international community is conscious of its sacred duty by these victims of war, then this is the time to act!

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