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TamilNet website member abducted

By V.S. Sambandan

COLOMBO: A Sri Lankan Tamil political commentator and editorial board member of the TamilNet website, D. Sivaram, was "abducted by an unknown gang" on Thursday, the Free Media Movement, a media rights group, said.

Quoting eyewitnesses, the spokesperson of the FMM, Sunanda Deshapriya, said Mr. Sivaram was leaving a restaurant at Bambalapitiya, in Colombo, after a drink with two friends when the "abductors pushed away one of them, forcibly took away Mr. Sivaram into a waiting jeep and sped away."

The FMM feared that "this could be another retaliatory abduction of rival militant groups."

Mr. Sivaram, a former member of the People’s Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE), left the group over a decade ago. Since then he had reported and commented on the Sri Lankan conflict in various English and Tamil newspapers, under the nom de plume Taraki. In addition to the TamilNet, Mr. Sivaram is currently a contributor to the Daily Mirror.

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