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* Sri Lanka Army Commander criticizes foreign intervention in military affairs
Sun, May 19, 2013, 05:08 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

May 19, Colombo: Sri Lanka's Army Commander Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya criticized the foreign representatives expressing different opinions about maintaining army camps in the North.

Participating in a radio program on the state-run SLBC, the Army Commander noted that there are only three Army camps in the Jaffna peninsula at present, although there were sixteen army camps at the end of the war in May 2009.

He told the state run radio that, as the Army Commander he is well aware of what has to be done to safeguard the independence gained by defeating the terrorism.

"Foreigners have no right to decide where the army camps of this country should be maintained," he said during the program.

Commenting on the allegations of army attacking civilians during the final stage of the offensive, the Army Commander said that a report has been released after a preliminary investigation according to the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) report and no evidence has been found that the army has deliberately attacked the civilians.

He pointed out that it was the Tamil Tiger terrorists who placed their artillery and heavy weapons among the civilian population and attacked the Army. The Tiger terrorists attacking and killing the civilians fleeing from their grip have been documented via aerial photographs, he added.

Speaking of the de-mining operations, Lieutenant General Jayasuriya said the demining of the remaining 96 square kilometers will be completed before the end of this year.

He added that a special programme is being implemented under the mediation of the Ministry of Economic Development to provide welfare facilities to the people who are being resettled.

The Army Commander expressed regret over certain groups belittling the role of peacetime troops for their involvement in the development of the country. He said the Army soldiers are competent in many specialties and they are using their skills to rebuild the nation.

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