Sri Lanka gov't denies ordering shooting surrendering rebels

10:50, December 14, 2009      

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The Sri Lankan government on Sunday denied a claim made by former Army chief and main opposition presidential challenger Sarath Fonseka that the government ordered the killings of surrendering Tamil Tiger rebels in the last battles early this year.

The island's state radio Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation quoted government spokesman and Media Minster Anura Yapa as sayingthat it was "utter false".

Human Rights Minister Mahinda Samarasinghe was quoted as saying that Fonseka had betrayed his own troops by making the statement.

Fonseka told a weekend newspaper that Gotabhaya Rajapakse, the defense secretary had ordered the military to shoot and kill the surrendering Tamil Tiger cadres during the last days of the war in mid-May.

Patali Champika Ranawaka, the minister of Environment, said Fonseka by making the statement had destroyed the sacrifices made by the government troops.

Fonseka led the Army to its victory over the Tamil Tigers ending three-decade old armed rebellion.

Since falling out with his Commander-in-Chief President Mahinda Rajapakse Fonseka was thrust into the role of opposition challenger in the presidential election to be held in January.

Source: Xinhua
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