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Monday, December 21, 2009

JVP reveals SF consulted them from US Challenges Rajapaksa brothers to give up US citizenship

by Shamindra Ferdinando

The JVP yesterday revealed that they had been in touch with Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Sarath Fonseka even before the former Army Chief quit the service over his differences with Presi-dent Mahi-nda Rajapa-ksa and Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa.

JVP General Secretary Tilvin Silva said Fonseka had consulted the JVP over the phone when the US sought to question him regarding Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa’s alleged involvement in war crimes during Eelam War IV.

Addressing the media at their party headquarters, Silva said that the JVP had advised Fonseka to turn down the US request.

Silva said that Fonseka, though a Green Card holder was definitely not a traitor and would never betray the country. He said that unlike Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, who quit the service in the 1990s to obtain US citizenship, Fonseka had fought the LTTE right throughout his military career.

Both the JVP General Secretary and Vijitha Herath challenged the Defence Secretary and his brother Basil, a dual citizen as well as Chandima Rasaputra (Southern Provincial Councillor) to give up US citizenship. They pointed out the absurdity in the government position that Fonseka should not be allowed to contest the forthcoming presidential election on the basis that he was a Green Card holder. They queried why a Green Card holder had been appointed the Commander of the Army. They also attacked Minister Dallas Alahapperuma for ‘talking with a forked tongue’. "Alahapperuma fled the country after the PA’s defeat in 2001 and returned several years later. Now he is talking big," Silva said. "Where was he during protests against the UNP’s Ceasefire Agreement with the LTTE? He was far away but returned to accept a ministerial portfolio, whereas the JVP helped the then Prime Minister Rajapaksa to win the last presidential poll in November 2005."

Silva said that the government was attacking Fonseka over a recent statement attributed to him in an interview with The Sunday Leader that the Defence Secretary had ordered Major General Shavendra Silva, the General Officer Commanding (GOC) Army’s 58 Division not to take prisoners of war, though Opposition presidential candidate denied that particular statement on several occasions.

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