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Video showing Lankan forces executing Tamils surfaces

August 26, 2009 17:30 IST

A disturbing video purportedly showing Sri Lankan soldiers executing nine Tamils was broadcast in London on Wednesday, triggering war crime charges against Colombo which categorically denied that its security forces were involved in such atrocities.

The footage was reportedly recorded by a soldier on his mobile phone. Journalists for Democracy in Sri Lanka which passed the material to Channel 4, said it was filmed in January. According to a report in The Times, the footage, appears to show what the Tamil community and human rights campaigners have long alleged that in its final surge against the Tamil Tiger rebels this year, the Sri Lankan Army summarily killed prisoners.

Channel 4, which broadcast the video said it was recorded by a Sri Lankan soldier on his mobile phone in January when government forces overwhelmed the stronghold of the Liberation Tigers of the Tamil Eelam at Kilinochchi.

The Sri Lankan High Commission in London has categorically denied "that the Sri Lankan armed forces engaged in atrocities against the Sri Lankan Tamil community. They were only engaged in a military offensive against the LTTE. "The High Commission has noted that in many instances in the past, various media institutions used doctored videos, photographs and documents to defame the Sri Lankan Government and armed forces. Therefore, we request you to verify the authenticity of the video footage."

H S Rao in London
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