Extremists may derail India-Lanka ties

Updated 27 October 2013
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Extremists may derail India-Lanka ties

This refers to media reports that legislative assembly in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu has urged the federal government to respect the sentiments of Tamils and boycott the Commonwealth summit scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka next month.
The assembly also urged New Delhi not to send any representatives to the Commonwealth Heads Of Government Meeting (CHOGM).
It will be unfortunate if Prime Minister Manmohan Singh decides to keep away from this event. It has to be noted that summit is being held in Asia after 30 years.
It is critical that India and Sri Lanka retain a meaningful and close relationship despite the issues that sometimes arise between them.
Particularly during elections, Sri Lanka figures large in Indian power politics. Colombo’s cordial relationship with Beijing also has become an issue for other countries because of wrong perceptions about the nature of China’s influence on the island.
The Sri Lanka government rightly believes that re-emergence of terrorism was still a threat.
Several overseas based LTTE-linked groups are allegedly coordinated by the Global Tamils Forum.
Their intention is the division of Sri Lanka and the establishment of a separate state.
A persistent Indian diplomatic effort and growing trust and confidence between New Delhi and Colombo eventually led to provincial elections in the Northern Province last month.
Northern Province Chief Minister C. V. Wigneswaran and his colleagues in Jaffna are also keen that Manmohan Singh visits Jaffna, after the summit in Colombo, to discuss their concerns and developmental needs.
The Indian federal government must take a responsible decision on the summit in the wake of extremist demands emerging from the state of Tamil Nadu.
Peaceful Sri Lanka has now become a favorite destination in South Asia for foreign investors.
Sri Lanka’s neighboring states such as India and Pakistan must provide maximum support to this friendly state. — M. Cassim, Jeddah


Syrian civil war

Updated 18 April 2017
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Syrian civil war

Since it broke out six years ago, the disastrous war in Syria has claimed about 400,000 lives, with the victims being more civilians than fighters. Of the civilians, the most affected are women and children. Peace is shattered in and around Syria only to safeguard the most selfish monster in the world: Bashar Assad.
According to a UNICEF report, grave violations against Syrian children during the war have been recorded. The children in Syria are not only maimed and killed as a result of bombings but also forcefully recruited to be part of the conflict. Children as young as 7 years old are pushed into the front line as fighters, suicide bombers and executioners! The actual figures of those injured, dead and forcefully-recruited children are far higher than in the UNICEF report.
The innocent children “used” in the conflict have had the right to blossom, the right to enjoy life and the right to be on a play-ground torn from them. They have been deprived of the right to education and, according to UNICEF, nearly two million children have been forced to stop their education with one-third of school buildings rendered inoperative due to destruction.
With their often physically crippled parents, the children have to be the sole bread-winners in nearly 75 percent of Syrian households. Unwillingly, the children are forced to serve as garbage collectors, hairdressers and cleaners. Keeping aside what Assad gets out of this war, the beneficiaries of the war are weapon manufacturers who may well be dubbed parasites living on the blood of innocents.
Assad, the inhuman butcher of humanity, does not care what the world says, opines, suggests and warns about the catastrophic war in Syria. More than the ruinous acts of Assad, Russia and Iran, it shocks, grieves and pains to see that the world and the Muslim world has done nothing to stop the butcher of this century from his brutal and barbaric destruction of his own nation and his own people.