When a government uses overwhelming military force and simply ignores the wishes of the people being murdered, expect an insurgency that will change its face but remain determined to achieve set goals. Sri Lanka, you have been warned:
A Marxist group of Tamil militants with connections to the Palestinian Liberation Organisation and Cuba is preparing to mount a new insurgency in Sri Lanka six months after the Government declared an end to the 26-year-old war there.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was founded in eastern Sri Lanka four months ago and has vowed to launch attacks against government and military targets unless its demands for a separate Tamil homeland are met.
“This war isn’t over yet,” Commander Kones, head of the PLA’s Eastern District military command, told The Times during a night meeting in a safe house in the east of the country last week.
“There has been no solution for Tamils since the destruction of the LTTE [Tamil Tigers] in May. So we have built and organised the PLA and are ready to act soon. Our aim is a democratic socialist liberation of the northeast for a Tamil Eelam [the desired Tamil state].”
Kones, a nom de guerre, claimed that the PLA had 300 active members and expected to recruit 5,000 volunteers from the 280,000 Tamil civilians recently freed from detention camps.
He said that the PLA, commanded by a ten-man committee, was an entirely separate organisation from the LTTE, but said that former LTTE cadres would be able to join the organisation provided that they swore their allegiance to the PLA’s political aims.