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"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."

- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Selected Writings by Dharmeratnam Sivaram (Taraki)

Sojourn to Vanni tells all

4 May 1997 

The LTTE wants to secure and maintain the good offices of a western country as a third party facilitating any process connected to a future dialogue with the government of Sri Lanka. This has been the LTTE’s goal from the day it became clear that India is ultimately interested in undermining the Tamil cause - and more so after it burnt its boats with Delhi by fighting the Indian army and later by exterminating Rajiv Gandhi.

The Tigers finally admitted that Thilakar had indeed been to the Vanni and that Karikalan the deputy chief of their political wing is in a western country. An authoritative LTTE source said last week that Thilakar’s visit to the Vanni from Europe was in connection with a process initiated by a western government which is keen to solve the conflict in Sri Lanka.

However, he insisted that his organization has had no direct contact with the Sri Lankan government thus far and that it will persist on the army’s withdrawal to pre-Riviresa I positions as a non negotiable precondition for beginning peace talks with the PA. And he denied reports that Dr. Balasingham had also left the Vanni with Karikalan to England.

Dr. Balasingham is still working with the Tigers in the northern jungles he said. Karikalan, according to him is now in the western country which is currently involved in matters connected to Thilakar’s sojourn in the Vanni. It is apparent that the Tigers will not officially acknowledge any of this right now, obviously in view of the sensitivities of the western government that has facilitated the process.

As we pointed out in these columns earlier, the deputy chief of the LTTE’s political wing could not have gone abroad without a country granting him the necessary

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