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* Sri Lanka's evicted Muslims return to their original places in Jaffna
Tue, Jan 18, 2011, 12:38 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 18, Jaffna: Over 5,000 Sri Lankan Muslims evicted by the Tamil Tiger terrorists two decades ago from their homes in Jaffna peninsula have been resettled in their original places, the Defence Ministry reported.

Quoting the Government Agent of Jaffna Mrs. Imelda Sukumar, the report said those displaced have been resettled in their original places in Jaffna, Chavakachcheri, and Welani.

The forcibly evicted Muslims have been living with their relatives or in the displaced camps since 1990s.

According to the Government Agent, an assessment had been carried out to develop infrastructure facilities such as water, health and sanitation before the returnees were resettled in their original places.

Most of the returning Muslims belong to the fishing and agricultural sector and there are some more who are waiting to come back, she has added.

"Out of the families resettled, 622 have already been provided with a resettlement payment of rupees 5,000, 678 families with dry rations, 617 families with return kits funded by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and 114 families with bags of cement," Mrs. Sukumar was quoted by the Defence Ministry.

The LTTE began its systematic ethnic cleansing of the North in 1985 by forcibly occupying Muslim properties. They ordered the Muslim population in Mannar to leave in October 1989 and a year later LTTE evicted over 75,000 Muslims from Jaffna with hours of notice.

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