Sunday, December 9, 2007

LTTE expert rubbishes Hindraf link to terror

An expert on the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has rubbished allegations that the Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) has ‘terror links’ with the national liberation movement in Sri Lanka, as claimed by the Malaysian police chief.

P Ramasamy - who in 2003 served on the LTTE’s Constitutional Affairs Committee to draft proposals for an interim administration in Sri Lanka's northeast - said the claim shows that the government is sidestepping legitimate grievances of Indian Malaysians.

“Don’t bring terrorism into this, because there is no link. There is no LTTE involvement,” said the former professor at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysian’s Centre for History, Political Science and Strategic Studies.

Ramasamy, now the DAP international secretary, was responding to claims by Inspector-General of Police Musa Hassan that Hindraf is soliciting support from terrorist groups.

Musa’s allegation, contained in a press statement issued yesterday, follows a similar claim by Attorney-General Abdul Gani Patail in court on Wednesday when he alleged that Hindraf had met with LTTE members.

Hindraf legal advisor P Uthayakumar - one of those behind the Nov 25 rally in Kuala Lumpur to protest against alleged discrimination and marginalisation of the Indian community - has dismissed the claims as false.

‘Where’s the evidence?’

Ramasamy said the government should own up to the problems faced by the Indian community instead of resorting to such smear campaign tactics.

“Look at the Indian problem and find a way to resolve it. That’s all. What does this have to do with the LTTE? Nothing,” he said when contacted today.

“By trying to link them with terrorism, they’re trying to demonise Hindraf. It’s a well known smear campaign to sidestep resolving a problem. It’s utter nonsense, and there’s no basis for it.”

He also challenged Musa to come up with evidence.

“There is no LTTE (support). LTTE itself needs support. What support can they give us? They themselves are appealing to the Tamil diaspora in Europe and US. We don’t need their support. This is a Malaysian problem,” he noted.

He said there is very little to link the Tamils in Malaysia, the majority of whom originate from south India, to issues in Sri Lanka.

Ramasamy describes himself as an ‘international peacemaker’, on the basis of having contributed to peace negotiations between liberation movements and governments in Indonesia, Philippines and Colombia. He is not the same P Ramasamy who is linked with Uthayakumar’s Parti Reformasi Insan Malaysia.

No comments: