LTTE still smuggling humans

LTTE international network had strengthened human smuggling activities in Sri Lanka after the war, international terrorism expert Prof Rohan Gunaratna said.

Gunaratna who is also head of the International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research (ICPVTR)] at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore said the phase of human smuggling changed after 2009 when the LTTE focused on smuggling its remainning memebrs in the country to several countries in Asia and the West.

Gunaratna said the LTTE used human smuggling to relocate their leaders and members along with their families after the war.
 He also said the human traffickers switched to fishing trawlers as the LTTE operated ships had come under international scrutiny.

“For instance MV Sun Sea and MV Alicia were not LTTE owned transporting arms but LTTE purchased and operated ships specifically for human smuggling,” he added. Gunaratna also said the LTTE’s international network benefited through credit card, bank and check fraud, bogus asylum, benefit scams and other illegal operations.

Meanwhile the Navy has intercepted over 400 persons being smuggled out of the country this month alone. He said while one wing of the LTTE poses as human rights activists, the back offices of the organization staffed by the terrorist-criminals engaged in extortion, arms procurement, illicit shipping, terrorist operations, real estate, entertainment and human smuggling.
He further called the government to restore its relations with the West and India to curtail LTTE illegal activities.

Written by  The Nation , Sunday, 22 July 2012 00:28

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