Topic started by VP (@ 126.96.36.199) on Tue Jul 16 04:58:27 .
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15. Juli 2002
Sri Lanka: Norwegian observer held hostage
Two observers, one Norwegian and one Dane, were Saturday evening held against their will by separatist Tamil soldiers on Sri Lanka.
They were later released unharmed, NRK reports.
The incident occured when the Sri Lankan Navy observed two vessels belonging to the LTTE guerillas (Tamil Tigers) in an area where Indian trawlers were fishing.
The Scandinavian observers were asked by the Sri Lankan navy to inspect one of the vessels.
-The LTTE-members who had control of the boat held the observers against their will, until the boat reached the shore. This is a breach of the cease-fire agreement, says Teitur Torkelson, spokesman for the observers.
The two observers were released unharmed, and the two LTTE-members were not arrested. However, the incident harms the peace process, says the Norwegian head of the observers.
The present cease-fire is a result of the Norwegian-led mediation effort to end years of civil war in which 64,000 people have been killed in Sri Lanka.