Thursday, June 12, 2008

State Minister Brown express sympathy victims of LTTE terrorist attacks

The British Minister of State and Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs with special responsibility for Asia, Lord Malloch Brown told President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Dorchester Hotel in London that they "feel huge sympathy for President Rajapaksa, people of Sri Lanka and the victims of terrorist bombs in the island nation."

"We wish that this type of violence would end soon," he said.

The State Minister discussed a range of bilateral issues and the need to continue high level engagement between the two countries. The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) has been blamed for the terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka.

After two recent most terrorist attacks in civilian buses the United Nations Humanitarian Office (OCHA) said, the Katubedda and Polgolla bus attacks by LTTE are against all standards of international humanitarian law and all principles on which the United Nations is based.

"The targeting of non-combatants is a contravention of international humanitarian law, for which those responsible must be held accountable," OCHA's news service IRIN quoting a UN official said.

The UN humanitarian office said that the United Nations is renewing calls for increased protection of unarmed civilians in accordance with international humanitarian law, in the two bomb attacks targeting civilian buses June 6 eight hours apart, leaving 24 dead and more than 80 injured.

The UN office said, "In the first attack, a bus full of morning commuters was hit at around 7.30am by a Claymore mine-type explosion at Katubedda, a suburb 15km south of the capital, Colombo. Twenty-two people were killed and more than 60 injured in that incident, according to police. "The second bomb, in the rear of a passenger bus in Polgolla town, Kandy District, about 120km from Colombo, left two dead and more than 20 injured."

These attacks on civilians are against all standards of international humanitarian law," Neil Buhne, the UN resident representative and humanitarian coordinator in Sri Lanka, told IRIN. "They are against all principles on which the UN is based."

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