RealNews

In New Proposal, Rebels Seek Territorial Autonomy in Sri Lanka

The rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam released a proposal on Saturday for an interim authority for the territory they control in Sri Lanka, setting the stage for renewed negotiations with the government. The Tigers have been fighting for a Tamil homeland in the country, which has a Sinhalese majority, for two decades. They have renounced their demand for a separate state, but maintain that only internal self-determination in the form of territorial and political autonomy will safeguard Tamils against discrimination. The Tigers control most of the island nation’s north and east. Their proposal calls for the formal establishment of a Tiger-dominated interim administration, which would have absolute power over everything from land to justice in those areas. It would effectively legitimate the institutions they already have in place. The conflict between the government and the Tigers took more than 64,000 lives before a cease-fire in February 2002. After six rounds of peace talks, the Tigers withdrew in April, saying the government had done too little to rehabilitate the war-ravaged northeast. Full Story

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