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  • Dr Zahida
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 4, 2000



      It was another balmy Friday evening in the sleepy village of Kathankudy in
      Eastern Sri Lanka. Except for the bedtime croaking of the waterfowls and
      the first song of a night bird the village air was silent. The men and the
      children had already gathered at the two mosques in this predominantly
      Muslim village for Friday evening Isha prayers.

      The village road was empty, well, almost. A white Hi-Ace van was speeding
      towards the Meera Jumma mosque raising a plume of dust behind it. Abdul
      Muthalib, a youth (20) was riding fast a borrowed bicycle towards the mosque
      as he was late for prayers. What he least expected happened as Abdul
      alighted at the entrance. "Bantra," a well-known Tamil Tiger cadre from the
      area, grabbed his cycle, slapped him and pushed him into the mosque. Abdul
      was shocked and it took him only a moment or two to understand what was
      going to happen. But it was far too late.

      During Isha prayers one has to kneel down four times, and already the
      congregation had started to kneel for the second time. Suddenly, there was a
      loud explosion, followed by more, from exploding hand grenades lobbed into
      the kneeling congregation. More than 30 Tamil Tiger terrorists who stormed
      out of the Hi-Ace van had already surrounded the mosque. There was no
      escape for the pious devotees. The terrorists, some dressed as Muslims
      complete with "fez" caps and others in military fatigues rushed in, their
      automatic weapons blazing away at the kneeling devotees. Abdul felt a
      bullet ripping through his body and fell down with a scream. The devotees
      were cut down like pigeons by the hail of merciless rain of bullets; their
      screams of "Allah" smothered by the thunder of the high powered automatic
      weapons. The firing went on unabated until every single devotee was hit,
      and then it ceased. But it was not the end of the crime, it was the start
      of the most heinous act: The Tigers walked over the bodies, searching the
      sea of bodies, flesh, bones and blood for survivors; hacking and slitting
      open the bellies of those who showed signs of possible survival.

      At the very moment, the scenario was identical at the smaller Hussainiya
      mosque located about half a kilometer away. It had only one entrance and
      not a single devotee could escape. Among the dead was the village doctor
      Anwer, some teachers and the prominent citizens of the area.

      In a few minutes, the terrorists had vanished, just like they came, into the
      darkness of the night. They had left behind empty cases of Kalashnikov
      ammunition, T56 magazines, shrapnel from the grenades as well as shredded
      human bodies. Walls were splattered with flesh and blood and floors
      littered with the entrails of cut open bodies. Immediate death toll was 147
      men and children and the number was rising from others succumbing to their

      Sri Lanka Army Brigade Commander (Baticaloa), Brigadier A.N.U. Seneviratne
      said that the army rushed into Katankudy from Araipattai and Kallady camps
      within 15 minutes of the receipt of information about the brutal massacre.
      They helped removing the injured to the Ampara, Polonnaruwa and Batticaloa
      hospitals by air. A Sri Lanka Air Force helicopter gunship fired at a Tiger
      boat in the lagoon believed to be taking fleeing terrorists.

      This was not the first or the last time where the Tamil Tiger terrorists
      massacred Muslims in the genocidal ethnic cleansing pogroms of their so
      called homeland in the North and the East of Sri Lanka. But it was one of
      the largest massacres in a single village in a single day. Close on its
      heels come the massacre of Muslims in Eravur.

      In that attack the Tamil Tiger terrorists mowed down 105 Muslims in the
      night of Saturday ******** in Eravur, a township north of Baticaloa. The
      Tamil Tigers had entered the town on foot at about 11:30 pm via Punnedkadu
      area, silently hacking to death anyone they met. Those who had escaped the
      ensuing massacre said that the terrorists had called out to the sleeping
      occupants of the households in Sinhala, deluding them into believing they
      were safe. The butchery lasted until 1:30 am Sunday, with houses at 12
      different points attacked. Homes which did not respond to the terrorists'
      call were broken into and some had grenades lobbed into them. Even those
      villagers who had escaped on to the road were gunned down.

      The Chenkalady army camp a few kilometers north of Eravur had learned of the
      massacre only early Sunday morning. The terrorists had planted their cadres
      on the road to Chenkalady killing anyone who tried to reach the camp for

      On Sunday, the town's mosque was a sea of grief-stricken mourners, all
      lending a hand as the dead were being brought in and prepared for burial in
      a make shift tent outside the mosque. Later, each body was laid out in the
      mosque, pending burial the same evening according to Muslim tradition.

      The Tamil Tigers tell the world that they are fighting for the rights of the
      Tamil speaking people in Sri Lanka. Nothing is further from the truth.
      Majority of Sri Lanka's Muslims (Click here to learn about Muslims of Sri
      Lanka) are Tamil speaking. But they have a distinct ethnicity and oppose
      living under the hegemony of rulers of a "Tamil State". In any case what
      the Nazi like Tamil Tigers want is an ethnically cleansed pure "Tamil
      Homeland" devoid of any other community. With this end in view, the Tigers
      gave an ultimatum to all the Muslims who lived in Jaffna (over 50,000) to
      vacate their homes and leave the peninsula never to return or face certain
      death. Having witnessed the 25,000 Sinhalese citizens in Jaffna being
      massacred or chased out earlier, the Muslims knew their fate. They left
      Jaffna leaving their ancestral property, without any of their belongings,
      and ended up as refugees in the south. As months passed by, and as
      inhabitants of each ancient Sinhalese village in the East were massacred or
      driven away, the attention started focusing on the other non Tamils in the
      East; the Muslims. This is the reason for the attacks on the innocent
      Muslims. Their only crime is living in their ancient villages now
      encompassed by an imaginary future "TAMIL HOMELAND" of a few racist
      extremists. The sheer brutality of the Tamil Tigers' attacks is
      deliberately designed to drive immeasurable fear into the hearts of the
      survivors who escape the killing fields, until then their ancestral land.
      Their eye-witness accounts, told a many time over, make the inhabitants of
      the surrounding villages tremble and desert their own villages. That is
      exactly what the Tigers want to happen: Automatic, spontaneous, creation of
      the "TAMIL HOMELAND - Eelam".

      The irony is that the brutalities, torture and the killings at the blood
      soaked hands of the Tigers are not confined to the Sinhalese and the
      Muslims. The fate of Tamils who oppose, or do not share the "vision" of
      Prabhakaran, the autocratic ruthless Tamil Tiger leader (described by New
      York Times as "Asia's latest Pol Pot"), is worse. According to an article
      in the Indian Express (correct? What is the date?) the Tamil Tigers
      (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam - LTTE)have killed more Tamils in Sri
      Lanka than every other force put together. One of the most ill-famous
      punishments being the "lamp-post sacrifice" in which the victim is tied
      alive to a lamp post and "garlanded" with a burning car tire.

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