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Sri Lanka's Genocidal War - '95 to '01
Voice of America reports on Sri Lanka's disinformation campaign...
The Voice of America reported on 28 November 1995:
"The Sri Lankan Government is waging a propaganda war to complement its military offensive. Correspondent Michael Drudge reports from Colombo that truth has become one of the war's victims. Media observers say Sri Lankan television has begun resorting to disinformation in its reporting on the war against Tamil Tiger guerrillas.
A Government television news broadcast Monday quoted Tamil Tiger Commander saying the military take over of the northern Jaffna peninsula was a serious set back for the rebel movement. In truth Commander Prabhakaran called the loss of Jaffna only a temporary set back.
The Government newscast said Commander Prabhakaran's reference to peace negotiations was a sign of Tamil Tiger weakness. In reality, he simply rejected any negotiation as long as the army occupies Jaffna. Observers say the television newscast was but the latest instance of government media officials hedging the truth.
The military press office on Saturday issued a statement that the Tamil Tigers had used gas on troops, implying it was a chemical weapons attack. Only later did military sources admit the gas in question had been tear gas. The government continues to ban reporters from the northern war zone. The state information department hands out video and still photographs produced by the Sri Lankan army. Information is provided by fax. The government is also forbidding reporters to visit camps where hundreds of thousands of civilians have fled to escape the fighting.
Sri Lanka media are subject to military censorship. The local cable operator even blacks out stories about Sri Lanka that appear on foreign television channels."