The Channel 4 documentary featuring pictures of the alleged coldblooded killing of LTTE chief Velupillai Prabakaran’s 12-year-old son has been dismissed by Sri Lanka as “lies, half truths and numerous forms of speculation.”
The documentary titled ‘No War Zone-The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka’ is to be aired in Geneva at the next session of the U.N. Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in March.
The pictures have once again raised questions about the conduct of the Sri Lankan armed forces during the final stages of the operation against Tamil Tigers and dealt another blow to the government’s attempts to head off a critical resolution at the UNHRC.
One of the photos shows Balachandran Prabakaran sitting in a bunker, alive and unharmed, in the custody of troops. Another, taken a few hours later, shows the boy’s body on the ground, his chest pierced by bullets.
“This is not the first time such unsubstantiated allegations have been levelled against the Sri Lankan forces,” military spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said.
“Interestingly, these come up as we near a UNHRC meeting and die down thereafter. No substantive evidence has been presented for us to launch an investigation. Unfortunately, it appears that the parties who float such baseless allegations never want these to be investigated or solved. They want to keep them as mysteries in order to tarnish the country’s good image as and when it suits their agendas.”
Mr. Wanigasooriya said that if the Channel 4 was interested in having them investigated, it should cooperate with credible evidence and the Army would institute a probe.
Channel 4’s documentary director Callum Macrae said the documentary aimed to test India over its next move in the UNHRC resolution against Sri Lanka. India had voted against Sri Lanka at last year’s resolution. “The new evidence in the film is certain to increase pressure on the Indian government to not only support a resolution on Sri Lanka and accountability, but also ensure that it is robustly worded, and that it outlines an effective plan for international action to end the impunity in Sri Lanka,” Mr. Macrae said.
Keywords: Velupillai Prabakaran, Balachandran Prabakaran, Balachandran death, Sri Lanka war crimes, Channel 4 TV photographs, Sri Lankan military, No War Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka documentary, Eelam War, LTTE, Sri Lankan Tamils, ethnic conflict