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* Sri Lanka military refutes allegations made by catholic bishops
Fri, Jan 10, 2014, 12:29 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Jan 10, Colombo: Sri Lanka military today strongly refuted the allegations made by the Catholic bishops in the North that the military used cluster munitions and chemical weapons during the final stages of the war.

During a meeting with Stephen J. Rapp, for War Crimes Issues, in the Office of Global Criminal Justice at the Department of States on Wednesday Bishop of Mannar Rev. Rayappu Joseph, and Bishop of Jaffna Rev. Thomas Savundranayagam have requested the US official to initiate a probe on whether the government forces used cluster munitions and chemical weapons in densely populated areas.

The two bishops have reportedly alleged that the Sri Lankan Forces have carried out indiscriminate aerial bombing in the North.

Rejecting the bishops' claim the Military Spokesman Brigadier Ruwan Wanigasooriya said the Sri Lanka Army at no point in its history of counter terrorist operations has used unconventional weapons.

He further clarified that the weapons used by the security forces were internationally accepted conventional weapons.

He asserted that the Sri Lanka Air Force has never carried out any indiscriminate aerial bombing.

"The targeting process was supported by UAVs that captured very clear pictures of the targeted area. The LTTE camps and localities targeted were engaged only after careful verification," Brigadier Wanigasooriya said.

The Military Spokesman added that this report from the north is another proof that some separatist elements who strive to ensure that Sri Lanka remains under international pressure, probably with the intention of having guaranteed support from their host countries, have been able to feed dignitaries of high standing with incorrect and completely baseless information.

The bishops have also asked the diplomat to conduct investigations to look into allegations that the government deliberately attacked hospitals, places of worship and block food and medicine for the civilians trapped in the fighting as a war tactic, an AP report said.

"It is unfortunate that personalities of high eminence fall prey to such fallacies," the Spokesman said.

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