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`LTTE hand in EROS Bala killing'

By V.S. Sambandan

COLOMBO, AUG. 16. The Sri Lankan Government has condemned today's killing of Balanadarajah Iyer (`EROS Bala'), the propaganda secretary of the Eelam People's Democratic Party (EPDP), and said that the nature of the recent killings in Sri Lanka "suggests involvement" of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).

In a strong statement, the Government described the killing of EROS Bala as the "latest in a spate of brutal killings that continue to be perpetrated in Colombo and the Eastern Province."

Those killed, the Government said "include journalists, academics and activists who are targeted as a consequence of their political affiliation."

Listing the members of the EPDP, (known for its anti-LTTE stand), who were killed and the "abortive assassination attempt" on the EPDP leader, Douglas Devananda, who is also a Cabinet Minister, the Government said: "the nature of killings and the persons targeted, suggests the involvement of the LTTE in these incidents."

Expressing concern over the incidents "being perpetrated with disregard to the provisions of the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) and contrary to the spirit of building an environment for peace," the Government said it "will assert its authority firmly and fairly in order to uphold law and order, maintain the CFA and observe civilised standards."

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