Sri Lanka to release all detained ex-LTTE cadres by mid-2012

Dec 10, Colombo: Sri Lankan authorities expect to release all remaining former Tamil Tiger rebels by the middle of next year following the completion of their training program, a government official said.

The last remaining group of 700 former Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) cadres will be released by mid-2012 after providing them the mandatory 12 months training Secretary for the Ministry of Rehabilitation and Prison Reforms, Mr. A. Dissanayaka said yesterday.

The official made this claim following the visit of 104 former LTTE female cadres to the Sri Lankan parliament Friday before being reintegrated into society after their one year rehabilitation program.

The rehabilitated female combatants visited the parliament during the committee stage debate of the Ministry of Prison and rehabilitation. They were the members of the last group of around 700 remaining ex terrorists.

The Secretary said another 46 cadres who completed one year vocational training will be released on Sunday in Jaffna.

“They will be given training in 20 different fields and once reintegrated into the society they can obtain self-employment loans up to Rs 250,000,” the official said.

The former combatants receive training in vocational skills before their release through the programs organized by Sri Lanka military to earn a living on their own once released.

During and immediately after the final phase of the war 11,700 LTTE cadres have surrendered to the government security forces.

Sri Lanka has allocated Rs.750 million for the rehabilitation process for this year. The government says it has spent Rs. 2.5 billion on the rehabilitation of ex-LTTE cadres since the conclusion of the conflict in May 2009.

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