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Updated: October 6, 2009 02:08 IST

Situation conducive for Sri Lankan refugees: Karuna

B. Muralidhar Reddy
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In this February 19, 2009 photo Sri Lankan refugees in Dharmapuri prepare to leave for Chennai. Photo:N.Bashkaran
THE HINDU In this February 19, 2009 photo Sri Lankan refugees in Dharmapuri prepare to leave for Chennai. Photo:N.Bashkaran

Minister of National Integration Vinayagamoorthy Muralitharan alias Karuna Amman has said there is no need for India to grant citizenship to Sri Lankan refugees in Tamil Nadu.

“Colonel” Karuna, former LTTE commander, told the Sri Lankan newspaper Daily Mirror that there was no need for such a gesture as the situation in Sri Lanka had improved.

“The situation in the country was now very good and it would be better to receive the Sri Lankan refugees back in the island,” the Minister told the paper.

Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram told media on Saturday that Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi’s letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on granting permanent resident status for the refugees was under the Centre’s consideration.

U.S. clarification

The United States, responding to protests from Sri Lanka over remarks by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has clarified that it had no evidence of women being raped while in government custody in the course of Eelam War IV from August 2006 to May 2009.

The explanation came in a letter addressed to Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama by American Ambassador- at- Large for Global Women’s Issues at the State Department Melanne Verveer.

Last week, Ms. Clinton said at a U.N. Security Council meeting that “rape had been used as a weapon of war in the Balkans, Burma, Sri Lanka and elsewhere and that in too many countries and in too many cases, the perpetrators had not been punished”.

Colombo officially lodged its protest with the U.S. embassy in Colombo over the remarks made by Ms. Clinton.

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