The News Minute| March 7, 2015| 6.00 pm IST
Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickramasinghe has called slain Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) chief Vellupillai Prabhakaran a man whose desire for glory was such that he nearly wiped out the whole Tamil race.
In an interview to Tamil channel Thanthi TV, the Sri Lankan Prime Minister has candidly admitted that India played a role in helping Sri Lanka to wipe off LTTE, something the UPA government had vehemently denied, keeping in mind the sentiments in Tamil Nadu.
‚ÄúPresident Rajapaksa could have not wiped out the LTTE without India's help,‚ÄĚ he said.
When reminded that India has been categorically denying that, Ranil Wickramasinghe added, ‚ÄúAmnesia, you know is very common among politicians.‚ÄĚ
Rejecting the accusation of genocide, he admitted that Tamil civilians had become casualties in the war, ‚ÄúI would say large number of people of Sri Lanka, including a large number of Tamils have been killed in the conflict. Some of them are casualties of war. Some were killed for no reasons at all. Deaths have been partly due to the operations of the Sri Lankan Army, security forces, partly due to the operations of the IPKF, partly due to the operations of the LTTE.‚ÄĚ
Leveling serious allegations against the LTTE chief and Former President of Sri Lanka Mahinda Rajapaksa, Wickramasinghe said that the two leaders had struck a monetary deal in 2009, following which Prabhakaran ensured that Tamils did not vote in 2009 Sri Lankan elections, leading to Rajapaksa‚Äôs victory.
‚ÄúWho made Mahinda Rajapaksa the President? Not the people in the south... By preventing 300 to 400 thousand Tamils from voting, there was a deal between Mahinda Rajapaksa & LTTE. Mahinda Rajapaksa paid money to the LTTE,‚ÄĚ he said.
He reiterated that Rajapaksa paid money to the LTTE and said, ‚ÄúThat is a fact even Rajapaksa has not denied... Prabhakaran took money.‚ÄĚ
Ranil Wickramasinghe also said that if he had been the President in 2009, he would have worked towards a resolution with the LTTE.
‚ÄúMany in the LTTE were willing to do a deal. Prabhakaran wasn‚Äôt ready. Finally he fell out with Balasingham...Why was Balasingham excluded? Balasingham knew the reality .The reality was the International Community wanted a deal. Prabhakaran thought I can't finish him off physically, I will finish off politically.‚ÄĚ
Prabhakaran with Anton Balasingham, Shankar and Kumaran Pathmanathan during Anton's visit to Wanni in early 80's. Courtesy- Defense.lk
He alleged that Prabhakaran systematically killed Tamil leaders.
‚ÄúPrabhakaran's desire for glory was such that he nearly wiped out the whole Tamil race. I blame him for having destroyed, decimated the Tamil Political leadership,‚ÄĚ the Prime Minister said.
He blamed Prabhakaran of thwarting a peace deal as after 5-6 years ‚Äėhis leadership would have been challenged,‚Äô and pointed out how Prabhakaran killed former Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa in 1993 in a suicide attack.
‚ÄúHe failed to finish off President Chandrika Kumaratunga who was for peace, who still stands for peace.‚ÄĚ