Interesting coverage of the Tamil Tiger situation in France here and in other posts on the blog. You know, in case you might want to know more about a major terrorist organization.
More on how funds for the LTTE are strong-armed from Tamil's living abroad here:
The charges include extortion of money from the Tamil diaspora in France to finance the LTTE’s terrorist activities in Sri Lanka.Another tale of the U.S. bust of arms trafficking for the Tigers here.
The investigation had been carried out with bilateral co-operation at operational level with relevant departments in USA, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Italy, UK, the Netherlands and Sri Lanka.
The LTTE had deployed ‘collectors’ under the supervision of local leaders. Whose only activity is to extort money and who were allowed 20 per cent of the sums collected as their ‘salary’.
The arrested Tiger activists are charged with running for several years a vast operation of financial extortion among the Tamil diaspora in France.
During 2006, the LTTE has collected more than six million euros where each Tamil family was forced to pay 2000 euros per year and shopkeepers were made to pay 6000 euros.
The investigation highlights the terror prevalent among the Tamil diaspora due to the LTTE’s harsh methods, and how it exerts violence on families of the diaspora back in Sri Lanka for nonpayment of contributions abroad, often amounting to assassination or confiscation of possessions and properties.
The transfer of the funds collected in France are sometimes physically carried in cash by ‘suitcase carriers’ usually to Switzerland to avoid bank records.
Conflicting claims of victory in a Naval skirmish between the LTTE and the Sri Lankan Navy here:
Sri Lankan naval gunships battled LTTE boats off the island's northwest coast on Friday, the military and rebels said, both sides claiming to have destroyed enemy craft.One of the features of this conflict is the PR machines fielded by both sides.
The sea battle comes amid a flurry of violence in recent weeks that has killed hundreds as the military tries to capture rebel bases in the east. The Tamil Tigers have hit back with bomb attacks and a daring air raid on an air force base outside the capital, Colombo.
A human rights watchdog said on Friday that international monitors were urgently needed in Sri Lanka to protect civilians, often deliberately targeted by both sides of the conflict.
The military said its patrol craft spotted five rebel boats, believed to be on a suicide mission, off Kalpitiya, 140 kilomtres northwest of Colombo.
They intercepted them and opened fire hitting one boat, which exploded, said navy spokesman Cmdr. D.K.P. Dassanayake.
At least two rebels were on board when it sank, Dassanayake said, adding one navy sailor was wounded by the explosion.
However, the rebels said their forces sank a Sri Lankan ship, killing seven sailors before returning to base without a loss.
``There was a 15-minute battle and one Sri Lankan patrol craft sank and three fled taking aboard the dead and the wounded,'' said rebel spokesman Rasiah Ilanthirayan from Kilinochchi, the Tamil Tiger's de-facto capital in the north.
``All our craft returned to base safe,'' he said.