Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam
|Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam|
|தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகள்|
|Also known as||Tamil Tigers|
|Leader||Velupillai Prabhakaran †|
|Dates of operation||5 May 1976– 18 May 2009|
|Motives||Creation of an independent state of Tamil Eelam in the north and east of Sri Lanka.|
|Major actions||Assassination of Rajiv Gandhi|
|Status||Inactive. Militarily defeated in May 2009.|
|Size||18,000, as of 2004, excluding divisions.|
|Annual revenue||US$200–300 million prior to the military defeat.|
|Means of revenue||Donations from expatriate Tamils, extortion, shipping, sales of weapons and taxation under LTTE-controlled areas.|
|Part of a series on|
|Sri Lankan Tamils|
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) (Tamil: தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகள், romanized: Tamiḻīḻa viṭutalaip pulikaḷ, Sinhala: දම්ළ ඊළාම් විමුක්ති කොටි, romanized: Damiḷa īḷām vimukthi koṭi, also known as the Tamil Tigers) was a Tamil militant organization that was based in northeastern Sri Lanka. Its aim was to secure an independent state of Tamil Eelam in the north and east in response to the state policies of successive Sri Lankan governments that were widely considered to be discriminatory towards the minority Sri Lankan Tamils, as well as the oppressive actions—including anti-Tamil pogroms in 1956 and 1958—carried out by the majority Sinhalese.
Founded in May 1976 by Velupillai Prabhakaran, the LTTE was involved in armed clashes against the Sri Lankan government and armed forces. Oppression against Sri Lankan Tamils continued by Sinhalese mobs, with the 1977 anti-Tamil pogrom and 1981 burning of the Jaffna Public Library taking place. Following the week-long July 1983 anti-Tamil pogrom carried out by Sinhalese mobs that came to be known as Black July, the LTTE's escalation of intermittent conflict into a full-scale nationalist insurgency began, which started the Sri Lankan Civil War. By this time, the LTTE was widely regarded as the most dominant Tamil militant group in Sri Lanka and among the most feared guerrilla forces in the world, while Prabhakaran's status as a freedom guerrilla fighter led to comparisons to revolutionary Che Guevara by global media, though Prabhakaran's actions were also widely viewed as terroristic.
Initially starting out as a guerrilla force, the LTTE increasingly came to resemble that of a conventional fighting force with a well-developed military wing that included a navy, an airborne unit, an intelligence wing, and a specialised suicide attack unit. In particular, India's relationship with the LTTE was complex, as it went from initially supporting the organisation to engaging it in direct combat through the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF), owing to changes in the former's foreign policy during the phase of the conflict. The LTTE gained global notoriety for using women and children in combat and carrying out a number of high-profile assassinations, including former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 and Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa in 1993.
Over the course of the conflict, the LTTE frequently exchanged control of territory in the north-east with the Sri Lankan military, with the two sides engaging in intense military confrontations. It was involved in four unsuccessful rounds of peace talks with the Sri Lankan government and at its peak in 2000, the LTTE was in control of 76% of the landmass in the Northern and Eastern provinces of Sri Lanka. Prabhakaran headed the organisation from its inception until his death in 2009. Between 1983 and 2009, more than 80,000 were killed in the civil war, of which many were Sri Lankan Tamils. 800,000 Sri Lankan Tamils also left Sri Lanka for various destinations, including Europe, North America, and Asia. The LTTE has been designated as a terrorist organisation by 32 countries, including the European Union, Canada, the United States, and India.
This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page. (Learn how and when to remove these template messages)(Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Historical inter-ethnic imbalances between the Sinhalese and Tamil populations are alleged to have created the background of the LTTE. Post independent Sri Lankan governments attempted to reduce the increased presence of the Tamil minority in government jobs, which led to ethnic discrimination, seeded hatred and division policies including the "Sinhala Only Act" and gave rise to separatist ideologies among many Tamil leaders. By the 1970s, initial non-violent political struggle for an independent Tamil state was used as justification for a violent secessionist insurgency led by the LTTE.
In the early 1970s, United Front government of Sirimavo Bandaranaike introduced the policy of standardisation to curtail the number of Tamil students selected for certain faculties in the universities. In 1972, the government added a district quota as a parameter within each language. A student named Satiyaseelan formed Tamil Manavar Peravai (Tamil Students League) to counter this. This group comprised Tamil youth who advocated the rights of students to have fair enrolment. Inspired by the failed 1971 insurrection of Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, it was the first Tamil insurgent group of its kind. It consisted of around 40 Tamil youth, including Ponnuthurai Sivakumaran (later, the leader of the Sivakumaran group), K. Pathmanaba (one of the founder members of EROS) and Velupillai Prabhakaran, an 18-year-old youth from single caste-oriented Valvettithurai (VVT).
In 1972, Prabhakaran teamed up with Chetti Thanabalasingam, Jaffna to form the Tamil New Tigers (TNT), with Thanabalasingham as its leader. After he was killed, Prabhakaran took over. At the same time, Nadarajah Thangathurai and Selvarajah Yogachandran (better known by his nom de guerre Kuttimani) were also involved in discussions about an insurgency. They would later (in 1979) create a separate organisation named Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO) to campaign for the establishment of an independent Tamil Eelam. These groups, along with another prominent figure of the armed struggle, Ponnuthurai Sivakumaran, were involved in several hit-and-run operations against pro-government Tamil politicians, Sri Lanka Police and civil administration during the early 1970s. These attacks included throwing bombs at the residence and the car of SLFP Jaffna Mayor, Alfred Duraiyappah, placing a bomb at a carnival held in the stadium of Jaffna city (now "Duraiyappah stadium") and Neervely bank robbery. The 1974 Tamil conference incident during which intervention by Sri Lankan police resulted in 11 dead also sparked the anger of these militant groups. Both Sivakumaran and Prabhakaran attempted to assassinate Duraiyappah in revenge for the incident. Sivakumaran committed suicide on 5 June 1974, to evade capture by Police. On 27 July 1975, Prabhakaran assassinated Duraiyappah, who was branded as a "traitor" by TULF and the insurgents alike. Prabhakaran shot and killed the Mayor when he was visiting the Krishnan temple at Ponnalai.
Founding and rise to power
The LTTE was founded on 5 May 1976 as the successor to the Tamil New Tigers. Uma Maheswaran became its leader, and Prabhakaran its military commander. A five-member committee was also appointed. It has been stated that Prabhakaran sought to "refashion the old TNT/new LTTE into an elite, ruthlessly efficient, and highly professional fighting force", by the terrorism expert Rohan Gunaratna. Prabhakaran kept the numbers of the group small and maintained a high standard of training. The LTTE carried out low-key attacks against various government targets, including policemen and local politicians.
Tamil United Liberation Front leader Appapillai Amirthalingam, who was in 1977 elected as the Opposition leader of Sri Lanka Parliament, clandestinely supported the LTTE. Amirthalingam believed that if he could exercise control over the Tamil insurgent groups, it would enhance his political position and pressure the government to agree to grant political autonomy to Tamils. Thus, he provided letters of reference to the LTTE and to other Tamil insurgent groups to raise funds. Both Uma Maheswaran (a former surveyor) and Urmila Kandiah, the first female member of the LTTE, were prominent members of the TULF youth wing. Maheswaran was the secretary of TULF Tamil Youth Forum, Colombo branch. Amirthalingam introduced Prabhakaran to N. S. Krishnan, who later became the first international representative of LTTE. It was Krishnan who introduced Prabhakaran to Anton Balasingham, who later became the chief political strategist and chief negotiator of LTTE, which split for the first time in 1979. Uma Maheswaran was found to be having a love affair with Urmila Kandiah, which was against the code of conduct of LTTE. Prabhakaran ordered him to leave the organisation. Uma Maheswaran left LTTE and formed People's Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE) in 1980.
In 1980, Junius Richard Jayewardene's government agreed to devolve power by the means of District Development Councils upon the request of TULF. By this time, LTTE and other insurgent groups wanted a separate state. They had no faith in any sort of political solution. Thus the TULF and other Tamil political parties were steadily marginalised and insurgent groups emerged as the major force in the north. During this period of time, several other insurgent groups came into the arena, such as EROS (1975), TELO (1979), PLOTE (1980), EPRLF (1980) and TELA (1982). LTTE ordered civilians to boycott the local government elections of 1983 in which TULF contested. Voter turnout became as low as 10%. Thereafter, Tamil political parties were largely unable to represent Tamil people as insurgent groups took over their position.
Thirunelveli attack, 1983
The LTTE carried out its first major attack on 23 July 1983, when they ambushed Sri Lanka Army patrol Four Four Bravo at Thirunelveli, Jaffna. Thirteen Sri Lankan servicemen were killed in the attack, leading to the Black July pogrom where up to 3000 Tamil civilians were killed across the island.
Thousands of outraged Tamil youths joined Tamil militant groups to fight the Sri Lankan government, in what is considered a major catalyst to the insurgency in Sri Lanka.
In reaction to various geo-political (see Indian intervention in the Sri Lankan Civil War) and economic factors, from August 1983 to May 1987, India, through its intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), provided arms, training and monetary support to six Sri Lankan Tamil insurgent groups including the LTTE. During that period, 32 camps were set up in India to train these 495 LTTE insurgents, including 90 women who were trained in 10 batches. The first batch of Tigers were trained in Establishment 22 based in Chakrata, Uttarakhand. The second batch, including LTTE intelligence chief Pottu Amman, trained in Himachal Pradesh. Prabakaran visited the first and the second batch of Tamil Tigers to see them training. Eight other batches of LTTE were trained in Tamil Nadu. Thenmozhi Rajaratnam alias Dhanu, who carried out the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi and Sivarasan—the key conspirator were among the militants trained by RAW, in Nainital, India.
In April 1984, the LTTE formally joined a common militant front, the Eelam National Liberation Front (ENLF), a union between LTTE, the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation (TELO), the Eelam Revolutionary Organisation of Students (EROS), the People's Liberation Organisation of Tamil Eelam (PLOTE) and the Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF).
Clashes with other insurgent groups
TELO usually held the Indian view of problems[clarification needed] and pushed for India's view during peace talks with Sri Lanka and other groups. LTTE denounced the TELO view and claimed that India was only acting on its own interest. As a result, the LTTE broke from the ENLF in 1986. Soon fighting broke out between the TELO and the LTTE and clashes occurred over the next few months. As a result, almost the entire TELO leadership and at least 400 TELO militants were killed by the LTTE. The LTTE attacked training camps of the EPRLF a few months later, forcing it to withdraw from the Jaffna peninsula. Notices were issued to the effect that all remaining Tamil insurgents join the LTTE in Jaffna and in Madras, where the Tamil groups were headquartered. With the major groups including the TELO and EPRLF eliminated, the remaining 20 or so Tamil insurgent groups were then absorbed into the LTTE, making Jaffna an LTTE-dominated city.
Another practice that increased support by Tamil people was LTTE's members taking an oath of loyalty which stated LTTE's goal of establishing a state for the Sri Lankan Tamils. In 1987 LTTE established the Black Tigers, a unit responsible for conducting suicide attacks against political, economic, and military targets, and launched its first suicide attack against a Sri Lankan Army camp, killing 40 soldiers. LTTE members were prohibited from smoking cigarettes and consuming alcohol in any form. LTTE members were required to avoid their family members and avoid communication with them. Initially, LTTE members were prohibited from having love affairs or sexual relationships as it could deter their prime motive, but this policy changed after Prabhakaran married Mathivathani Erambu in October 1984.
In July 1987, faced with growing anger among its own Tamils and a flood of refugees, India intervened directly in the conflict for the first time by initially airdropping food parcels into Jaffna. After negotiations, India and Sri Lanka entered into the Indo-Sri Lanka Accord. Though the conflict was between the Tamil and Sinhalese people, India and Sri Lanka signed the peace accord instead of India influencing both parties to sign a peace accord among themselves. The peace accord assigned a certain degree of regional autonomy in the Tamil areas, with Eelam People's Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF) controlling the regional council and called for the Tamil militant groups to surrender. India was to send a peacekeeping force, named the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF), part of the Indian Army, to Sri Lanka to enforce the disarmament and to watch over the regional council.
War against IPKF
Although the Tamil militant organizations did not have a role in the Indo-Lanka agreement, most groups, including EPRLF, TELO, EROS, and PLOTE, accepted it. LTTE rejected the accord because they opposed EPRLF's Varadaraja Perumal as the chief ministerial candidate for the merged North Eastern Province. The LTTE named three alternate candidates for the position, which India rejected. The LTTE subsequently refused to hand over their weapons to the IPKF. After three months of tensions, LTTE declared war on IPKF on 7 October 1987.
Thus LTTE engaged in military conflict with the Indian Army, and launched its first attack on an Indian army rations truck on 8 October, killing five Indian para-commandos who were on board by strapping burning tires around their necks. The government of India stated that the IPKF should disarm the LTTE by force. The Indian Army launched assaults on the LTTE, including a month-long campaign, Operation Pawan to win control of the Jaffna Peninsula. The ruthlessness of this campaign, and the Indian army's subsequent anti-LTTE operations, which included civilian massacres and rapes made it extremely unpopular among many Tamils in Sri Lanka.
Premadasa government support
The Indian intervention was also unpopular among the Sinhalese majority. Prime Minister Ranasinghe Premadasa pledged to withdraw IPKF as soon as he is elected president during his presidential election campaign in 1988. After being elected, in April 1989, he started negotiations with LTTE. President Premadasa ordered the Sri Lanka Army to clandestinely hand over arms consignments to the LTTE to fight the IPKF and its proxy, the Tamil National Army (TNA). These consignments included RPGs, mortars, self-loading rifles, Type 81 assault rifle, T56 automatic rifles, pistols, hand grenades, ammunition, and communications sets. Moreover, millions of dollars were also passed on to the LTTE.
The last members of the IPKF, which was estimated to have had a strength of well over 100,000 at its peak, left the country in March 1990 upon the request of President Premadasa. Unstable peace initially held between the government and the LTTE, and peace talks progressed towards providing devolution for Tamils in the north and east of the country. A ceasefire held between LTTE and the government from June 1989 to June 1990, but broke down as LTTE massacred 600 police officers in the Eastern Province.
Fighting continued throughout the 1990s, and was marked by two key assassinations carried out by the LTTE: those of former Indian Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991, and Sri Lankan President Ranasinghe Premadasa in 1993, using suicide bombers on both occasions. The fighting briefly halted in 1994 following the election of Chandrika Kumaratunga as President of Sri Lanka and the onset of peace talks, but fighting resumed after LTTE sank two Sri Lanka Navy Fast Attack Craft in April 1995. In a series of military operations that followed, the Sri Lanka Armed Forces recaptured the Jaffna Peninsula. Further offensives followed over the next three years, and the military captured large areas in the north of the country from the LTTE, including areas in the Vanni region, the town of Kilinochchi, and many smaller towns. From 1998 onward, the LTTE regained control of these areas, which culminated in the capture in April 2000 of the strategically important Elephant Pass base complex, located at the entrance of the Jaffna Peninsula, after prolonged fighting against the Sri Lanka Army.
Mahattaya, a one-time deputy leader of LTTE, was accused of treason by the LTTE and killed in 1994. He is said to have collaborated with the Indian Research and Analysis Wing to remove Prabhakaran from the LTTE leadership.
In 2002, the LTTE dropped its demand for a separate state, instead demanding a form of regional autonomy. Following the landslide election defeat of Kumaratunga and Ranil Wickramasinghe coming to power in December 2001, the LTTE declared a unilateral ceasefire. The Sri Lankan Government agreed to the ceasefire, and in March 2002 the Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) was signed. As part of the agreement, Norway and other Nordic countries agreed to jointly monitor the ceasefire through the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission.
Six rounds of peace talks between the Government of Sri Lanka and LTTE were held, but they were temporarily suspended after the LTTE pulled out of the talks in 2003 claiming "certain critical issues relating to the ongoing peace process". In 2003 the LTTE proposed an Interim Self Governing Authority (ISGA). This move was approved of by the international community but rejected by the Sri Lankan President. The LTTE boycotted the presidential election in December 2005. While LTTE claimed that the people under its control were free to vote, it is alleged that they used threats to prevent the population from voting. The United States condemned this.
The new government of Sri Lanka came into power in 2006 and demanded to abrogate the ceasefire agreement, stating that the ethnic conflict could only have a military solution, and that the only way to achieve this was by eliminating the LTTE. Further peace talks were scheduled in Oslo, Norway, on 8 and 9 June 2006, but cancelled when the LTTE refused to meet directly with the government delegation, stating its fighters were not being allowed safe passage to travel to the talks. Norwegian mediator Erik Solheim told journalists that the LTTE should take direct responsibility for the collapse of the talks. Rifts grew between the government and LTTE, and resulted in a number of ceasefire agreement violations by both sides during 2006. Suicide attacks, military skirmishes, and air raids took place during the latter part of 2006. Between February 2002 to May 2007, the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission documented 3,830 ceasefire violations by the LTTE, with respect to 351 by the security forces. Military confrontation continued into 2007 and 2008. In January 2008 the government officially pulled out of the Cease Fire Agreement.
In the most significant show of dissent from within the organisation, a senior LTTE commander named Colonel Karuna (nom de guerre of Vinayagamoorthi Muralitharan) broke away from the LTTE in March 2004 and formed the TamilEela Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal (later Tamil Makkal Viduthalai Pulikal), amid allegations that the northern commanders were overlooking the needs of the eastern Tamils. The LTTE leadership accused him of mishandling funds and questioned him about his recent personal behaviour. He tried to take control of the eastern province from the LTTE, which caused clashes between the LTTE and TMVP. The LTTE has suggested that TMVP was backed by the government, and the Nordic SLMM monitors corroborated this. It was later revealed that UNP Member of Parliament Seyed Ali Zahir Moulana had played an important role in the defection of Colonel Karuna from the LTTE to the Government.
Mahinda Rajapaksa was elected as the president of Sri Lanka in 2005. After a brief period of negotiations, LTTE pulled out of peace talks indefinitely. Sporadic violence had continued and on 25 April 2006, LTTE tried to assassinate Sri Lankan Army Commander Lieutenant General Sarath Fonseka. Following the attack, the European Union proscribed the LTTE as a terrorist organisation. A new crisis leading to the first large-scale fighting since signing of the ceasefire occurred when the LTTE closed the sluice gates of the Mavil Oya (Mavil Aru) reservoir on 21 July 2006, and cut the water supply to 15,000 villages in government controlled areas. This dispute developed into a full-scale war by August 2006.
After the breakdown of the peace process in 2006, the Sri Lankan military launched a major offensive against the Tigers, defeating the LTTE militarily and bringing the entire country under its control. Human rights groups criticised the nature of the victory which included the internment of Tamil civilians in concentration camps with little or no access to outside agencies. Victory over the Tigers was declared by Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on 16 May 2009, and the LTTE admitted defeat on 17 May 2009. Prabhakaran was killed by government forces on 19 May 2009. Selvarasa Pathmanathan succeeded Prabhakaran as leader of the LTTE, but he was later arrested in Malaysia and handed over to the Sri Lankan government in August 2009.
Defeat in the East
Eelam War IV had commenced in the East. Mavil Aru came under the control of the Sri Lanka Army by 15 August 2006. Systematically, Sampoor, Vakarai, Kanjikudichchi Aru and Batticaloa also came under military control. The military then captured Thoppigala, the Tiger stronghold in Eastern Province on 11 July 2007. IPKF had failed to capture it from LTTE during its offensive in 1988.
Defeat in the North
Sporadic fighting had been happening in the North for months, but the intensity of the clashes increased after September 2007. Gradually, the defence lines of the LTTE began to fall. The advancing military confined the LTTE into rapidly diminishing areas in the North. Prabhakaran was seriously injured during air strikes carried out by the Sri Lanka Air Force on a bunker complex in Jayanthinagar on 26 November 2007.[dubious ] Earlier, on 2 November 2007, S. P. Thamilselvan, who was the head of the rebels' political wing, was killed during another government air raid. On 2 January 2008, the Sri Lankan government officially abandoned the ceasefire agreement. By 2 August 2008, LTTE lost the Mannar District following the fall of Vellankulam town. Troops captured Pooneryn and Mankulam during the final months of 2008.
On 2 January 2009, the President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa, announced that the Sri Lankan troops had captured Kilinochchi, the city which the LTTE had used for over a decade as its de facto administrative capital. On the same day, President Rajapaksa called upon LTTE to surrender. It was stated that the loss of Kilinochchi had caused substantial damage to the LTTE's public image, and that the LTTE was likely to collapse under military pressure on multiple fronts. As of 8 January 2009, the LTTE abandoned its positions on the Jaffna peninsula to make a last stand in the jungles of Mullaitivu, their last main base. The Jaffna Peninsula was captured by the Sri Lankan Army by 14 January. On 25 January 2009, SLA troops "completely captured" Mullaitivu town, the last major LTTE stronghold.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa declared military victory over the Tamil Tigers on 16 May 2009, after 26 years of conflict. The rebels offered to lay down their weapons in return for a guarantee of safety. On 17 May 2009, LTTE's head of the Department of International Relations, Selvarasa Pathmanathan conceded defeat, saying in an email statement, "this battle has reached its bitter end".
With the end of the hostilities, 11,664 LTTE members, including 595 child soldiers surrendered to the Sri Lankan military. Approximately 150 hardcore LTTE cadres and 1,000 mid-level cadres escaped to India. The government took action to rehabilitate the surrendered cadres under a National Action Plan for the Re-integration of Ex-combatants while allegations of torture, rape, and murder were reported by international human rights bodies. They were divided into three categories; hardcore, non-combatants, and those who were forcibly recruited (including child soldiers). Twenty-four rehabilitation centres were set up in Jaffna, Batticaloa, and Vavuniya. Among the apprehended cadres, there had been about 700 hardcore members. Some of these cadres were integrated into the State Intelligence Service to tackle the internal and external networks of LTTE. By August 2011, government had released more than 8,000 cadres, and 2,879 remained.
After the death of LTTE leader Prabhakaran and the most powerful members of the organisation, Selvarasa Pathmanathan (alias KP) was its sole first generation leader left alive. He assumed duty as the new leader of LTTE on 21 July 2009. A statement was issued, allegedly from the Executive Committee of the LTTE, stating that Pathmanathan had been appointed leader of the LTTE. 15 days after the announcement, on 5 August 2009, a Sri Lankan military intelligence unit, with the collaboration of local authorities, captured Pathmanathan in the Tune Hotel, Downtown Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Sri Lanka Ministry of Defence alleges that Perinpanayagam Sivaparan alias Nediyavan of the Tamil Eelam People's Alliance (TEPA) in Norway, Suren Surendiran of British Tamils Forum (BTF), Father S. J. Emmanuel of Global Tamil Forum (GTF), Visvanathan Rudrakumaran of Transnational Government of Tamil Eelam (TGTE) and Sekarapillai Vinayagamoorthy alias Kathirgamathamby Arivazhagan alias Vinayagam, a former senior intelligence leader are trying to revive the organisation among the Tamil diaspora. Subsequently, in May 2011, Nediyavan, who advocates an armed struggle against the Sri Lankan state, was arrested and released on bail in Norway, pending further investigation.
The LTTE was viewed as a disciplined and militarised group with a leader of significant military and organisational skills. Three major divisions of the LTTE were the military, intelligence and political wings.
The military wing consisted of at least 11 separate divisions including the conventional fighting forces, Charles Anthony Brigade and Jeyanthan Brigade; the suicide wing called the Black Tigers; naval wing Sea Tigers, air-wing Air Tigers, LTTE leader Prabhakaran's personal security divisions, Imran Pandian regiment and Ratha regiment; auxiliary military units such as Kittu artillery brigade, Kutti Sri mortar brigade, Ponnamman mining unit and hit-and-run squads like Pistol gang. Charles Anthony brigade was the first conventional fighting formation created by LTTE. Sea Tiger division was founded in 1984, under the leadership of Thillaiyampalam Sivanesan alias Soosai. LTTE acquired its first light aircraft in the late 1990s. Vaithilingam Sornalingam alias Shankar was instrumental in creating the Air Tigers. It carried out 9 air attacks since 2007, including a suicide air raid targeting Sri Lanka Air Force headquarters, Colombo in February 2009. LTTE is the only terrorist-proscribed organisation to acquire aircraft. LTTE intelligence wing consisted of Tiger Organisation Security Intelligence Service aka TOSIS, run by Pottu Amman, and a separate military intelligence division. It was forbidden for the LTTE members to consume tobacco and alcohol. Illicit sex[clarification needed] was also prohibited. Each member carried a cyanide capsule with orders to use if captured.
|Type of Aircraft||Quantity|
|Unmanned aerial vehicles||2|
The LTTE operated a systematic and powerful political wing, which functioned like a separate state in the LTTE controlled area. In 1989, it established a political party named People's Front of Liberation Tigers, under Gopalaswamy Mahendraraja alias Mahattaya. It was abandoned soon after. Later, S. P. Thamilselvan was appointed the head of the political wing. He was also a member of the LTTE delegation for Norwegian brokered peace talks. After the death of Thamilselvan in November 2007, Balasingham Nadesan was appointed as its leader. Major sections within the political wing include International peace secretariat, led by Pulidevan, LTTE Police, LTTE court, Bank of Tamil Eelam, Sports division and the "Voice of Tigers" Radio broadcasting station of LTTE.
LTTE used female cadres for military engagements. Its women's wing consisted of Malathi and Sothiya Brigades.
The LTTE also controlled a powerful international wing called the "KP branch", controlled by Selvarasa Pathmanathan, "Castro branch", controlled by Veerakathy Manivannam alias Castro, and "Aiyannah group" led by Ponniah Anandaraja alias Aiyannah.
During its active years, the LTTE had established and administered a de facto state under its control, named Tamil Eelam with Kilinochchi as its administrative capital, and had managed a government in its territory, providing state functions such as courts, a police force, a human rights organisation, and a humanitarian assistance board, a health board, and an education board. It ran a bank (Bank of Tamil Eelam), a radio station (Voice of Tigers) and a television station (National Television of Tamil Eelam). In the LTTE-controlled areas, women reported lower levels of domestic violence because "the Tigers had a de facto justice system to deal with domestic violence."
In 2003, the LTTE issued a proposal to establish an Interim Self Governing Authority in the 8 districts of the North and East which it controlled. The ISGA was to be entrusted with powers such as the right to impose law, collect taxes and oversee the rehabilitation process until a favourable solution was reached after which elections would be held. The ISGA would consist of members representing the LTTE, GoSL and the Muslim community. According to the proposal, this LTTE administration intended to be a secular one with principal emphasis on prohibition of discrimination and protection of all communities.
Local perception and support
Due to its military victories, policies, call for national self-determination and constructive Tamil nationalist platform, the LTTE was supported by major sections of the Tamil community. University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna) claimed that "by combination of internal terror and narrow nationalist ideology the LTTE succeeded in atomising the community. It took away not only the right to oppose but even the right to evaluate, as a community, the course they were taking. This gives a semblance of illusion that the whole society is behind the LTTE."
The LTTE was a self-styled national liberation organisation with the primary goal of establishing an independent Tamil state. Tamil nationalism was the primary basis of its ideology. The LTTE was influenced by Indian freedom fighters such as Subhas Chandra Bose. The organisation denied being a separatist movement and saw itself as fighting for self-determination and restoration of sovereignty in what it recognised as its homeland. Although most Tigers were Hindus, the LTTE was an avowedly secular organisation; religion did not play any significant part in its ideology. Leader Velupillai Prabhakaran criticised what he saw as the oppressive features of traditional Hindu Tamil society, such as the caste system and gender inequality. The LTTE presented itself as a revolutionary movement seeking widespread change within Tamil society, not just independence from the Sri Lankan state. Therefore, its ideology called for the removal of caste discrimination and support for women's liberation. Prabhakaran described his political philosophy as "revolutionary socialism", with the goal of creating an "egalitarian society". When asked about the LTTE's economic policy, Velupillai Pirabaharan said an "open market economy." But he pointed out that: "We can only think about a proper economic structure when the ethnic problem is resolved. ... What form and what structure this economic system is to be instituted in can only be worked when we have a permanent settlement or independent state."
LTTE had developed a large international network since the days of N. S. Krishnan, who served as its first international representative. In the late 1970s, TULF parliamentarian and opposition leader A. Amirthalingam provided letters of reference for fundraising, and V. N. Navaratnam, who was an executive committee member of the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), introduced many influential and wealthy Tamils living overseas to Tamil insurgent leaders. Navaratnam also introduced LTTE members to the members of Polisario Front, a national liberation movement in Morocco, at a meeting held in Oslo, Norway. In 1978, during the world tour of Amirthalingam (with London-based Eelam activist S. K. Vaikundavasan), he formed the World Tamil Coordinating Committee (WTCC), which was later found to be an LTTE front organisation. The global contacts of LTTE grew steadily since then. At the height of its power, LTTE had 42 offices worldwide. The international network of LTTE engages in propaganda, fundraising, arms procurement, and shipping.
There were three types of organisations that engage in propaganda and fund raising—Front, Cover, and Sympathetic. Prior to the ethnic riots of 1983, attempts to raise funds for a sustaining military campaign were not realised. It was the mass exodus of Tamil civilians to India and western countries following the Black July ethnic riots, which made this possible. As the armed conflict evolved and voluntary donations lessened, LTTE used force and threats to collect money. LTTE was worth US$200–300 million at its peak. The group's global network owned numerous business ventures in various countries. These include investment in real estate, shipping, grocery stores, gold and jewellery stores, gas stations, restaurants, production of films, mass media organisations (TV, radio, print), and industries. It was also in control of numerous charitable organisations including Tamils Rehabilitation Organisation, which was banned and had its funds frozen by the United States Treasury in 2007 for covertly financing terrorism.
Arms Procurement and shipping activities of LTTE were largely clandestine. Prior to 1983, it procured weapons mainly from Afghanistan via the Indo-Pakistani border. Explosives were purchased from commercial markets in India. From 1983 to 1987, LTTE acquired a substantial amount of weapons from RAW and from Lebanon, Cyprus, Singapore, and Malaysia-based arms dealers. LTTE received its first consignment of arms from Singapore in 1984 on board the MV Cholan, the first ship owned by the organisation. Funds were received and cargo cleared at Chennai Port with the assistance of M. G. Ramachandran, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. In November 1994, the LTTE was able to purchase 60 tonnes of explosives (50 tonnes of TNT and 10 tonnes of RDX) from Rubezone Chemical plant in Ukraine, providing a forged Bangladeshi Ministry of Defense end-user certificate. Payments for the explosives were made from a Citibank account in Singapore held by Selvarasa Pathmanathan. Consignment was transported on board MV Sewne. The same explosives were used for the Central Bank bombing in 1996. Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia and Indonesia remained the most trusted outposts of LTTE, after India alienated it after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi.
Since late 1997, North Korea became the principal country to provide arms, ammunition, and explosives to the LTTE. The deal with North Korean government was carried out by Ponniah Anandaraja alias Aiyannah, a member of World Tamil Coordinating Committee of the United States and later, the accountant of LTTE. He worked at the North Korean embassy in Bangkok since late 1997. LTTE had nearly 20-second-hand ships, which were purchased in Japan, and registered in Panama and other Latin American countries. These ships mostly transported general cargo, including paddy, sugar, timber, glass, and fertilizer. But when an arms deal was finalized, they travelled to North Korea, loaded the cargo and brought it to the equator, where the ships were based. Then on board merchant tankers, weapons were transferred to the sea of Alampil, just outside the territorial waters in Sri Lanka's exclusive economic zone. After that, small teams of Sea Tigers brought the cargo ashore. The Sri Lanka Navy, during 2005–08 destroyed at least 11 of these cargo ships belonged to LTTE in the international waters.
LTTE's last shipment of weapons was in March 2009, towards the end of the war. The merchant vessel Princess Iswari went from Indonesia to North Korea under captain Kamalraj Kandasamy alias Vinod, loaded the weapons and came back to international waters beyond Sri Lanka. But due to the heavy naval blockades set up by the Sri Lankan Navy, it could not deliver the arms consignment. Thus it dumped the weapons in the sea. The same ship, after changing its name to MV Ocean Lady, arrived in Vancouver with 76 migrants, in October 2009. In December 2009, The Sri Lankan Navy apprehended a merchant vessel belonging to LTTE, "Princess Chrisanta" in Indonesia and brought it back to Sri Lanka.
The United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations (USSFRC) and Ethiopian based Jimma Times claimed that the Eritrean government had provided direct military assistance, including light aircraft to LTTE, during the 2002–03 period when the LTTE was negotiating with the Sri Lankan government via the Norwegian mediators. It was also alleged that Erik Solheim, the chief Norwegian facilitator, helped LTTE to establish this relationship. None of these claims have since been verified. These allegations and a suspicion from within the Sri Lankan armed forces, that LTTE had considerable connections and assets in Eritrea and that its leader Prabhakaran may try to flee to Eritrea in the final stages of war, prompted the Sri Lankan government to establish diplomatic relations with Eritrea in 2009. None of the allegations have since been verified.
Proscription as a terrorist group
- India (since 1992)
- United States (designated as Foreign Terrorist Organizations by the Department of State since 8 October 1997. Named as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) since 2 November 2001)
- United Kingdom (designated a Proscribed Terrorist Group under the Terrorism Act 2000 since 29 March 2001)
- European Union (since 2006; 27 countries)
- Canada (since 2006) Canada does not grant residency to LTTE members on the grounds that they have participated in crimes against humanity.
- Sri Lanka (from January 1998 to 4 September 2002, and again from 7 January 2009)
- Malaysia (since 2014)
The first country to ban the LTTE was its brief one-time ally, India. The Indian change of policy came gradually, starting with the IPKF-LTTE conflict, and culminating with the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. India opposes the new state Tamil Eelam that LTTE wants to establish, saying that it would lead to Tamil Nadu's separation from India, despite the leaders and common populace of Tamil Nadu considering themselves Indian. Sri Lanka itself lifted the ban on the LTTE before signing the ceasefire agreement in 2002. This was a prerequisite set by the LTTE for the signing of the agreement. The Indian Government extended the ban on LTTE considering their strong anti-India posture and threat to the security of Indian nationals.
The European Union banned LTTE as a terrorist organization on 17 May 2006. In a statement, the European Parliament said that the LTTE did not represent all Tamils and called on it to "allow for political pluralism and alternate democratic voices in the northern and eastern parts of Sri Lanka".
In October 2014, the European Court of Justice annulled the anti-terrorism sanctions and several other restrictions placed on the LTTE in 2006. The court noted that the basis of proscribing the LTTE had been based on "imputations derived from the press and the Internet" rather than on direct investigation of the group's actions, as required by law. Later, in March 2015, the EU reimposes the sanctions and restrictions.
In July 2017, the LTTE was removed from the terrorism blacklist of European Union's top court, stating that there was no evidence to show of LTTE carrying out attacks after its military defeat in 2009. However, despite the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling, the European Union stated the LTTE organization remains listed as a terrorist organization by the EU.
The LTTE leader Prabhakaran contested the terrorist designation of his organization, asserting that the international community had been influenced by the "false propaganda" of the Sri Lankan state and said that there was no coherent definition of the concept of terrorism. He also maintained that the LTTE was a national liberation organization fighting against "state terrorism" and "racist oppression". Following 9/11, in an effort to distance his organization from the "real terrorists", the LTTE leader expressed sympathy to the Western powers engaged in a war against international terrorism and urged them to provide "a clear and comprehensive definition of the concept of terrorism that would distinguish between freedom struggles based on the right to self-determination and blind terrorist acts based on fanaticism." He also expressed concern over states with human rights abuses like Sri Lanka joining the alliance in the war against terrorism as "posing a threat to the legitimate political struggles of the oppressed humanity subjected to state terror."
Karen Parker, an attorney specializing in human rights and humanitarian law, argued that the LTTE was not a terrorist organization but "an armed force in a war against the government of Sri Lanka." She characterized the war waged by the LTTE as "a war of national liberation in the exercise of the right of self-determination."
One of the main divisions of LTTE included the Black Tigers, an elite fighting wing of the movement, whose mission included carrying out suicide attacks against enemy targets. From ancient times, the Tamil civilization saw war as an honorable sacrifice, and fallen heroes were revered and worshiped in the form of a Hero stone. Heroic martyrdom was glorified in ancient Tamil literature. The Tamil kings and warriors followed an honor code similar to that of Japanese Samurais and committed suicide to save the honor. The Black Tigers wing of the LTTE is said to reflect some of these elements of Tamil martial traditions including the practice of the worship of fallen heroes (Maaveerar Naal) and martial martyrdom. All soldiers of LTTE carried a suicide pill (Cyanide Kuppi) around their necks to escape captivity and torture by enemy forces.
According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, LTTE was the first insurgent organization to use concealed Explosive belts and vests. According to the information published by the LTTE, the Black Tigers carried out 378 suicide attacks between 5 July 1987 and 20 November 2008. Out of the deceased, 274 were male and 104 were female.
Most of these attacks have involved military objectives in the north and east of the country, although civilians have been killed on many occasions. The LTTE was responsible for a 1998 attack on the Buddhist shrine and UNESCO world heritage site Sri Dalada Maligawa in Kandy that killed eight worshippers. The attack was symbolic in that the shrine, which houses a tooth of the Buddha, is the holiest Buddhist shrine in Sri Lanka. Other Buddhist shrines have been attacked, notably the Sambuddhaloka Temple in Colombo, in which nine worshippers were killed.
Black Tiger wing had carried out attacks on various high-profile leaders both inside and outside Sri Lanka. It had successfully targeted three world leaders, the only insurgent group to do so. That includes the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi, the former Prime Minister of India on 21 May 1991, the assassination of Ranasinghe Premadasa, the President of Sri Lanka on 1 May 1993, and the failed assassination attempt of Chandrika Kumaratunga, the Sri Lankan President on 18 December 1999, which resulted in the loss of her right eye.
The killed Black Tiger cadres were highly glorified and their families were given the "Maha Virar family" status. Those cadres were given a chance to have his/her last supper with the LTTE leader Prabhakaran, which was a rare honor one would get in the LTTE controlled area. This, in turn, motivated LTTE cadres to join the Black Tiger wing.
On 28 November 2007, an LTTE suicide bomber named Sujatha Vagawanam detonated a bomb hidden inside her brassiere in an attempt to kill Sri Lankan minister Douglas Devananda. This was recorded in the security cameras inside Devananda's office. It is one of the few unsuspected detonations of an explosive by a suicide bomber recorded by a camera.
|President of Sri Lanka||1|
|Ex-Prime Minister of India||1|
|Leaders of political parties||10|
|Members of Parliament||37|
|Members of provincial councils||6|
|Members of Pradeshiya Sabha||22|
|Political party organisers||17|
The LTTE has been condemned by various groups for assassinating political and military opponents. The victims include Tamil moderates who coordinated with the Sri Lanka Government and Tamil paramilitary groups assisting the Sri Lankan Army. The assassination of the Sri Lankan president Ranasinghe Premadasa is attributed to LTTE. The seventh Prime Minister of the Republic of India, Rajiv Gandhi, was assassinated by an LTTE suicide bomber Thenmozhi Rajaratnam on 21 May 1991. On 24 October 1994, LTTE detonated a bomb during a political rally in Thotalanga-Grandpass, which killed most of the prominent politicians of the United National Party, including presidential candidate Gamini Dissanayake MP, Cabinet ministers Weerasinghe Mallimarachchi and G. M. Premachandra, Ossie Abeygunasekara MP and Gamini Wijesekara MP.
LTTE sympathisers justify some of the assassinations by arguing that the people attacked were combatants or persons closely associated with Sri Lankan military intelligence. Specifically in relation to the TELO, the LTTE has said that it had to perform preemptive self-defence because the TELO was in effect functioning as a proxy for India.
Human rights violations
The United States Department of State states that its reason for banning LTTE as a proscribed terrorist group is based on allegations that LTTE does not respect human rights and that it does not adhere to the standards of conduct expected of a resistance movement or what might be called "freedom fighters". The FBI has described the LTTE as "amongst the most dangerous and deadly extremist outfits in the world". Other countries have also proscribed LTTE under the same rationale. Numerous countries and international organizations have accused the LTTE of attacking civilians and recruiting children. Despite the allegations of human rights abuses, the LTTE has been noted for its general lack of use of sexual violence or rape as a tactic, though there have been a few allegations of rape made against LTTE members. Some LTTE members accused of rape faced execution from the leadership.[note 1]
Attacks on civilians
The LTTE has launched attacks on civilian targets several times. Attacks were often thought to be carried out in revenge for attacks committed by the Sri Lankan Army, such as the Anuradhapura massacre which immediately followed the Valvettithurai massacre.[note 2] Notable attacks include the Aranthalawa massacre, Anuradhapura massacre, Kattankudy mosque massacre, the Kebithigollewa massacre, and the Dehiwala train bombing. Civilians have also been killed in attacks on economic targets, such as the Central Bank bombing. Around 3,700 to 4,100 civilians were killed in LTTE attacks. The LTTE leader Prabhakaran denied allegations of killing innocent Sinhalese civilians, claiming to condemn such acts of violence; and claimed that LTTE had instead attacked armed Home Guards who were "death-squads let loose on Tamil civilians" and Sinhalese settlers who were "brought to the Tamil areas to forcibly occupy the land." The state-sponsored settlements of Sinhalese in the northern and eastern parts of the island which the LTTE considered to be the traditional homeland of Tamils became "the sites of some of the worst violence." Similarly, the LTTE denied massacring Muslims, stating that they were allies against the Sinhalese state.
According to the International Crisis Group, the Sri Lankan government implemented the military-led settlements of Sinhalese community in Tamil areas in order to create "a buffer to the expansion of LTTE control" and to "undermine Tamil nationalist claims on a contiguous north-eastern Tamil homeland." The continuous inflow of Sinhalese settlers in Tamil areas since the 1950s had become a source of inter-ethnic violence and had been one of the major grievances expressed by the LTTE. During the beginning of the war, Sinhalese settlements, some armed, were created in Weli Oya, displacing many Tamil families living in the area. As such, Weli Oya saw numerous retaliatory attacks on Sinhalese settlers by the LTTE. At the same time, the LTTE has attacked long-existing Sinhalese residents within their claimed territories. Furthermore, Amnesty International has noted that in several massacres of Sinhalese, the victims had not been home guards or armed settlers.
The LTTE has been accused of recruiting and using child soldiers to fight against Sri Lankan government forces. The LTTE was accused of having up to 5,794 child soldiers in its ranks since 2001. Amid international pressure, the LTTE announced in July 2003 that it would stop conscripting child soldiers, but UNICEF and Human Rights Watch have accused it of reneging on its promises, and of conscripting Tamil children orphaned by the tsunami. On 18 June 2007, the LTTE released 135 children under 18 years of age. UNICEF, along with the United States, states that there has been a significant drop in LTTE recruitment of children, but claimed in 2007 that 506 child recruits remain under the LTTE. A report released by the LTTE's Child Protection Authority (CPA) in 2008 stated that less than 40 soldiers under age 18 remained in its forces. In 2009 a Special Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations said the Tamil Tigers "continue to recruit children to fight on the frontlines", and "use force to keep many civilians, including children, in harm's way". During the violent parts of the war, though some children were forcefully recruited, many voluntarily joined the LTTE after witnessing or experiencing abuses by Sri Lankan security forces, seeking to "protect their families or to avenge real or perceived abuses." However, during the ceasefire, the number of cases of forced recruitment far exceeded those of voluntary recruitment.
The LTTE argues that instances of child recruitment occurred mostly in the east, under the purview of former LTTE regional commander Colonel Karuna. After leaving the LTTE and forming the TMVP, it is alleged that Karuna continued to forcibly kidnap and induct child soldiers.
In October 1987, the LTTE took advantage of communal violence in the Eastern Province. LTTE gunmen led Tamil rioters and ordered Sinhalese to leave, threatening their lives. By 4 October, 5,000 Sinhalese were made homeless. Following the suicide of the Palaly prisoners, LTTE massacres of Sinhalese civilians throughout the Eastern Province occurred. By the end of the week, about 200 Sinhalese were dead and 20,000 had fled the Eastern Province.
The eviction of Muslim residents happened in the north in 1990, and the east in 1992. The expulsion of Muslims had more to do with disagreements over ethnic identity and politics than with religion as the Sri Lankan Muslims did not support the LTTE or the creation of an independent Tamil state and they do not identify with the ethnic Tamils despite being a Tamil-speaking people. The LTTE also saw Muslims as a threat to 'national security' as they alleged their Muslim cadres had defected from their movement to join the Sri Lankan military and paramilitary forces who were allegedly responsible for attacks on Tamil civilians.
Initially young Muslims joined the Tamil militant groups in the early years of Tamil militancy. Muslim ironmongers in Mannar fashioned weapons for the LTTE. LTTE later undertook its anti-Muslim campaigns as it began to view Muslims as outsiders, rather than a part of the Tamil nation. Local Tamil leaders were disturbed by the LTTE's call for the eviction of Muslims in 1990. In 2005, the International Federation of Tamils claimed that the Sri Lankan military purposefully stoked tensions between Tamils and Muslims, in an attempt to undermine Tamil security. As Tamils turned to the LTTE for support, the Muslims were left with the Sri Lankan state as their sole defender, and so to the LTTE, the Muslims had legitimised the role of the state, and were thus viewed as Sri Lankans.
Mistreatment of prisoners
LTTE had executed prisoners of war on a number of occasions, in spite of the declaration in 1988, that it would abide by the Geneva Conventions. One such incident was the mass murder of 600 unarmed Sri Lankan Police officers in 1990, in Eastern Province, after they surrendered to the LTTE on the request of President Ranasinghe Premadasa. In 1993, LTTE killed 200 Sri Lanka Army soldiers, captured in the naval base at Pooneryn, during the Battle of Pooneryn. In 1996, LTTE executed 207 military officers and soldiers who had surrendered to the LTTE during Battle of Mullaitivu (1996).
The LTTE has also tortured its prisoners. One Tamil prisoner held by the LTTE from 1992 to 1995 showed "clear signs of clear signs of burning with heated metal on his genitals, thigh, buttocks and back". Other methods of torture included hanging the victim upside down and beating them, forcible inhalation of chili fumes, inserting pins underneath fingernails, slashing with razors, and electroshocking. The LTTE tortured suspects based on the victim's refusal to co-operate and giving information to the Sri Lankan army or IPKF. Torture was also practiced on child soldiers who attempted to flee military service. One girl was left out in the sun for two days after being caught during an attempted escape. Sri Lankan soldiers and police officers were also tortured by the LTTE after being taken prisoner. One lance corporal was stripped naked and then beaten repeatedly all over his body for half an hour by child soldiers. LTTE prison conditions were often poor, leading to physical and mental health issues among the detainees. Many died due to infections from their wounds. Prisoners were given little food, and sometimes, rotten food was intentionally given. The LTTE used torture during interrogations, where prisoners were interrogated after sleep deprivation and tortured if there were any discrepancies in their story.
There are allegations that war crimes were committed by the Sri Lankan military and the rebel Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam during the Sri Lankan Civil War, particularly during the final months of the conflict in 2009. The alleged war crimes include attacks on civilians and civilian buildings by both sides; executions of combatants and prisoners by both sides; forced disappearances by the Sri Lankan military and paramilitary groups backed by them; acute shortages of food, medicine, and clean water for civilians trapped in the war zone; and recruitment of child soldiers by both the Tamil Tigers, and the TMVP, a Sri Lankan Army paramilitary group.
A panel of experts appointed by UN Secretary-General (UNSG) Ban Ki-moon to advise him on the issue of accountability with regard to any alleged violations of international human rights and humanitarian law during the final stages of the civil war found "credible allegations" which, if proven, indicated that war crimes and crimes against humanity were committed by the Sri Lankan military and the Tamil Tigers. The panel has called on the UNSG to conduct an independent international inquiry into the alleged violations of international law.
- "According to Margaret Trawick, an anthropologist who did field work in the Batticaloa area of eastern Sri Lanka, after four cadre gang-raped a 13-year-old girl, “As punishment, their hands were bound and they were dragged behind a tractor. At the end their bodies were torn up, and they were crying for water when they died.”
- "In May 1985, immediately following the massacre by the Sri Lankan Army of about 70 Tamil civilians in the northern coastal town of Valvettithurai, the LTTE leader's birth-place, the LTTE carried out a massacre of over 150 mainly Buddhist pilgrims in the sacred city of Anuradhapura."
- "Rebels admit defeat in Sri Lankan civil war | detnews.com | The Detroit News". detnews.com. Retrieved 30 May 2009.[dead link]
- Armed Conflicts Database, 2007
- "LTTE international presents an enduring threat". Lakbima News. July 2011. Archived from the original on 19 September 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "The Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora After the LTTE" (PDF). International Crisis Group. February 2010. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- Shanaka Jayasekara (October 2007). "LTTE Fundraising & Money Transfer Operations". satp.org. Archived from the original on 25 October 2007. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Majority in Tamil Nadu favours backing LTTE: Poll". Silicon India News. March–May 2009. Archived from the original on 21 August 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Liberation Tigers of Tamil Elam | Mapping Militant Organizations". web.stanford.edu. Archived from the original on 23 November 2017. Retrieved 26 April 2019.
- Tambiah, Stanley Jeyaraja (1986). Sri Lanka: Ethnic Fratricide and the Dismantling of Democracy. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 0-226-78952-7.
- "The Tamil Tigers' long fight explained - CNN.com". cnn.com. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
- Reuters (25 July 2007). "Tamil Tigers may be second richest rebel group worldwide". Livemint. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
- Ramach, Rajesh; May 19, ran; May 19, 2009UPDATED; Ist, 2009 09:25. "Prabhakaran ruined what he created". India Today. Retrieved 15 May 2020.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
- Wonacott, Peter (20 May 2009). "A Notorious Terrorist Who Refused to Compromise to the End". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
- "Sri Lanka rebels in new air raid". BBC News. BBC News. 29 April 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Goel, Avijit. "Is India's Sri Lanka policy working at all?". ORF. Retrieved 12 August 2019.
- "India's role in the rise of LTTE". Sify.
- "Humanitarian Operation Timeline, 1981–2009". Ministry of Defence (Sri Lanka). Archived from the original on 27 August 2011. Retrieved 2 August 2011.
- Mark Tran (May 2009). "Prabhakaran's death and fall of LTTE lead to street celebrations in Sri Lanka". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
- Mahr, Krista. "Sri Lanka to Start Tally of Civil-War Dead". Time – via world.time.com.
- Alison, Miranda (21 January 2009). Women and Political Violence: Female Combatants in Ethno-National Conflict. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-134-22894-2.
- Gargan, Edward A. (2 May 1993). "Suicide Bomber Kills President of Sri Lanka". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
- Sherman, Jake (2003). The Political Economy of Armed Conflict: Beyond Greed and Grievance. New York: Lynne Rienner Publishers. p. 198. ISBN 978-1-58826-172-4.
- Picciotto, Robert., Weaving, Rachel. (2006). Security And Development: Investing in Peace And Prosperity. London: Routledge. p. 171. ISBN 978-0-415-35364-9.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- "Sinhala Only Act destroyed peaceful Sri Lanka". ft.lk.
- Chelvadurai Manogaran, Ethnic conflict and reconciliation in Sri Lanka, University of Hawaii press, 1987, p116
- A. Jeyaratnam Wilson, The Break-up of Sri Lanka The Sinhalese-Tamil Conflict, Hurst Publishers, 1988, p131
- C.R. Da Silva, The impact of Nationalism on Education: The school Take-over 1961 and the University Admissions Crisis 1970-1975, Collective Identities, Nationalism, and Protests in Modern Sri Lanka, pp.486
- T. Sabaratnam. "Pirapaharan, Chapter 42". Sangam.org. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- Taraki Sivaram (May 1994). "The Exclusive Right to Write Eelam History". Tamil Nation. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- T. Sabaratnam. "The JVP and Tamil militancy". BottomLine. Archived from the original on 29 September 2008. Retrieved 17 August 2011.
- "Formation of the TULF: A formal background" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 October 2011. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- Rohan Gunaratna (December 1998). "International and Regional Implications of the Sri Lankan Tamil Insurgency". Archived from the original on 30 September 2011. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- Stewart Bell (23 July 2009). Cold Terror: How Canada Nurtures and Exports Terrorism Around the World. ISBN 9780470739051. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- "Separatist Conflict in Sri Lanka: A Tamil View". vgweb.org. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- DeVotta, Neil (2009). "The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and the Lost Quest for Separatism in Sri Lanka". Asian Survey. 49 (6): 1027. doi:10.1525/as.2009.49.6.1021. JSTOR 10.1525/as.2009.49.6.1021. Retrieved 20 February 2021.
- "Pon Sivakumaran, The first Martyr decided to die than suffer the torture in the event of enemy capture". Sri Lanka Newspapers. Retrieved 17 August 2011.
- Hoffman, Bruce (2006). Inside Terrorism. New York: Columbia University Press. p. 139. ISBN 978-0231-126-99-1.
- Jeyaraj, D. B. S. (5 May 2012). "Thirty Sixth Birth Anniversary of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam". dbsjeyaraj.com. Archived from the original on 8 May 2012. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- Gunaratna, Rohan, "The Rebellion in Sri Lanka: Sparrow Tactics to Guerrilla Warfare (1971–1996)," p. 13.
- T. Sabaratnam (December 2003). "Pirapaharan, Chapter 21, The Split of the LTTE". Retrieved 27 July 2011.
- Najamuddin, Jamila (17 May 2010). "Children of a lesser God". The Daily Mirror. Archived from the original on 2 November 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- "Remembering Sri Lanka's Black July". 23 July 2013 – via www.bbc.com.
- "Remembering Sri Lanka's Black July". 23 July 2013 – via www.bbc.com.
- "The massacres in Sri Lanka during the Black July riots of 1983 | Sciences Po Encyclopédie des violences de masse". sciencespo.fr. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Sieghart, Paul. "Sri Lanka: a mounting tragedy of errors" (PDF). International Commission of Jurists. pp. 76–77. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 January 2017. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Sri Lankan families count the cost of war", BBC News, 23 July 2008.
- "LTTE: the Indian connection". Sunday Times. 1997. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "Uppermost in our minds was to save the Gandhis' name". Express India. 1997. Archived from the original on 11 August 2007. Retrieved 25 July 2011.
- "Pottu Amman: Patient but ruthless Tiger". The Nation. 2009. Archived from the original on 30 May 2010. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Transcript- Rohan Gunaratne". Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission. 2010. Archived from the original on 19 January 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- Roberts, Michael (2009). "Killing Rajiv Gandhi: Dhanu's sacrificial metamorphosis in death". South Asian History and Culture. 1: 25–41. doi:10.1080/19472490903387191.
- Russell R. Ross; Andrea Matles Savada (1988). "Tamil Militant Groups". Sri Lanka: A Country Study. Retrieved 2 May 2007.
- Hellmann-rajanayagam, D. (1994). The Tamil Tigers: Armed Struggle for Identity. Franz Steiner Verlag. p. 164. ISBN 978-3-515-06530-6.
- O'Ballance, Edgar (1989). The Cyanide War: Tamil Insurrection in Sri Lanka 1973–88. London: Brassey's. p. 61. ISBN 978-0-08-036695-1.
- O'Ballance, Edgar (1989). The Cyanide War: Tamil Insurrection in Sri Lanka 1973–88. London: Brassey's. p. 62. ISBN 978-0-08-036695-1.
- Wilson, A. Jeyaratnam (June 2000). Sri Lankan Tamil Nationalism: Its Origins and Development in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. University of British Columbia Press. p. 128. ISBN 978-0-7748-0760-9.
- M. R. Narayan Swamy (August 1995). Tigers of Lanka: from Boys to Guerrillas. South Asia Books. pp. 191–198. ISBN 978-81-220-0386-4.
- Roberts, M. (2005). "Tamil Tiger "Martyrs": Regenerating Divine Potency?". Studies in Conflict & Terrorism. 28 (6): 493–514. doi:10.1080/10576100590950129. S2CID 109066751.
- Harrison, Frances (26 November 2002). "'Black Tigers' appear in public". BBC News. BBC News. Retrieved 2 September 2007.
- The Peace Accord and the Tamils in Sri Lanka. Hennayake S.K. Asian Survey, Vol. 29, No. 4. (April 1989), pp. 401–15.
- Stokke, K.; Ryntveit, A.K. (2000). "The Struggle for Tamil Eelam in Sri Lanka". A Journal of Urban and Regional Policy. 31 (2): 285–304. doi:10.1111/0017-4815.00129.
- O'Ballance, Edgar (1989). The Cyanide War: Tamil Insurrection in Sri Lanka 1973–88. London: Brassey's. pp. 91–4. ISBN 978-0-08-036695-1.
- Brown, Michael E., Coté, Owen R. Jr., Lynn-Jones, Sean M. (2010). Contending with Terrorism: Roots, Strategies, and Responses. New York: MIT Press. p. 214. ISBN 978-0-262-51464-4.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- "Shocking disclosures – Indian Peace Keeping Forces (IPKF) played double game in Sri Lanka". Tamils Sydney. Archived from the original on 29 September 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- O'Ballance, Edgar (1989). The Cyanide War: Tamil Insurrection in Sri Lanka 1973–88. London: Brassey's. p. 100. ISBN 978-0-08-036695-1.
- "Statistics on civilians affected by war from 1974 to 2004" (PDF). NorthEast Secretariat on Human Rights (NESOHR). January 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "History of the Organisation". University Teachers for Human Rights. Archived from the original on 13 July 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Chapter 55: Assassination of Athulathmudali". Asia Times. Archived from the original on 17 September 2002. Retrieved 28 July 2011.CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
- "Arming the enemy – Handing over arms to the LTTE". Lanka Library. Archived from the original on 2 April 2012. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- K. T. Rajasingham (2002). "Sri Lanka: The Untold Story, Chapter 44: Eelam war – again". Asia Times. Archived from the original on 17 September 2002. Retrieved 28 July 2011.CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
- "A Look at the Peace Negotiations". Inter Press Service. 2003. Archived from the original on 3 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Jaffna falls to Sri Lankan army". BBC News. BBC News. 5 December 1995. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- V. S. Sambandan (April 2000). "The fall of Elephant Pass". Hindu Net. Archived from the original on 17 October 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- AI 1996 Annual Report – Sri Lanka entry.
- "The Pirabhakaran Phenomenon Part 22". Sangam.org. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
- Bulathsinghala, Frances (19 September 2002). "LTTE drops demand for separate state". DAWN. Thailand. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- Samuel M. Katz (2004). At Any Cost: National Liberation Terrorism. Twenty-First Century Books. ISBN 978-0-8225-0949-3.
- V.S., Sambandan (25 December 2004). "LTTE for talks". The Hindu. Chennai, India. Archived from the original on 27 December 2004. Retrieved 20 April 2008.
- Sri Lanka: New Killings Threaten Ceasefire, Human Rights Watch, 28 July 2004.
- "Lankan PM calls LTTE to end talk deadlock". The Times of India. 2 June 2003. Archived from the original on 13 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Business community urges LTTE to get back to negotiating table". Sunday Observer. The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon. 27 April 2003. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- McConnell, D. (2008). "The Tamil people's right to self-determination" (PDF). Cambridge Review of International Affairs. 21 (1): 59–76. doi:10.1080/09557570701828592. S2CID 154770852. Retrieved 25 March 2008.
- Pathirana, Saroj (23 November 2005). "LTTE supported Rajapakse presidency?". BBC News. BBC News. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Ratnayake, K. (19 November 2005). "Rajapakse narrowly wins Sri Lankan presidential election". World Socialist Web Site. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- R. Cheran (April 2009) 9, 2009/UN+calls+for+ceasefire+fire+in+Sri+Lanka UN calls for ceasefire fire in Sri Lanka at The Real News
- Pathirana, Saroj (9 June 2006). "Collapse of talks". BBC News. BBC News. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "PM condemns suicide bomb attack in Sri Lanka". New Zealand Government. 17 October 2006. Archived from the original on 14 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Military Launches Airstrike Against LTTE After Suicide Bombing in Sri Lanka". Global Insight. 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Bomb targets Sri Lanka army chief". BBC News. BBC News. 25 April 2006. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Humanitarian Operation – Factual Analysis, July 2006 – May 2009" (PDF). Ministry of Defence (Sri Lanka). 1 August 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016.
- "Government ends ceasefire with Tamil Tigers". France 24 International News. France 24. Agence France-Presse. 2 January 2008. Archived from the original on 7 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Karuna removed from the LTTE". TamilNet report. 6 March 2004.
- "Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 September 2006.
- "Online edition of Sunday Observer – Business". www.sundayobserver.lk. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 9 November 2015.
- "EU ban on LTTE urged". BBCNews. 23 April 2006.
- "Bomb targets Sri Lanka army chief". BBC News. 25 April 2006. Retrieved 4 January 2010.
- "European Union bans LTTE". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 31 May 2006. Archived from the original on 1 June 2006.
- "Sri Lanka forces attack reservoir". BBC News. 6 August 2006. Retrieved 4 January 2010.
- Ramesh, Randeep (13 September 2009). "Harrassed Tamils languish in prison-like camps in Sri Lanka". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 15 July 2017.
- "President to announce end of war". Times Online. 17 May 2009. Retrieved 16 May 2009.
- From correspondents in Colombo (17 May 2009). "Tamil Tigers admit defeat in civil war after 37-year battle". News.com.au. Archived from the original on 19 May 2009. Retrieved 17 May 2009.
- D.B.S. Jeyaraj (9 August 2009). "'Operation KP': the dramatic capture and after". The Hindu. Chennai, India. Archived from the original on 11 August 2009.
- "Sri Lanka declares fall of rebel east, Tigers defiant". Reuters. 11 July 2007. Retrieved 11 July 2007.
- "Prabhakaran injured in air attack". Ministry of Defence. 19 December 2007. Archived from the original on 21 December 2007. Retrieved 26 December 2007.
- "Senior Tamil Tiger leader killed". BBC News. 2 November 2007. Retrieved 31 December 2007.
- Reddy, B. Muralidhar (3 January 2009). "Kilinochchi captured in devastating blow to LTTE". The Hindu. Chennai, India. Archived from the original on 24 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Mahendra (3 January 2009). "The fall of rebel headquarters: what does it hold for Sri Lanka?". Xinhuanet. Xinhua News Agency. Archived from the original on 4 June 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Sri Lanka Says Troops Have Rebel Capital". New York Times. Associated Press. 2 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.[dead link]
- "Editorial: A blow to global terror". The Island Online. Upali Newspapers. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Army 'takes more Tiger territory'". BBC News. BBC News. 8 January 2009. Retrieved 8 January 2009.
- Johnson, Ed (14 January 2009). "Sri Lankan Military Seizes Last Rebel Base on Jaffna Peninsula". Bloomberg. Bloomberg L.P. Archived from the original on 21 July 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Last Tamil Tiger bastion 'taken'". BBC News. BBC News. 25 January 2009. Retrieved 25 January 2009.
- Sri Lanka army 'defeats rebels', BBC, 16 May 2009
- Fears of mass suicide as Tamil Tigers face final defeat, The Times, 17 May 2009
- "Sri Lankan experience proves nothing is impossible". The Sunday Observer. 5 June 2011. Archived from the original on 8 June 2011. Retrieved 5 June 2011.
- "Colombo recalls splendid victory". The Pioneer. 31 August 2011. Retrieved 31 August 2011.
- "The Uncertain Fate of Detained LTTE Suspects in Sri Lanka". Human rights Watch. 3 February 2010. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
- "Sri Lanka "Taming The Tigers"". Sangam.org. March 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
- "Rehabilitation in final stages". Daily Mirror. 8 August 2011. Retrieved 9 August 2011.
- "New political formation of LTTE claimed". TamilNet. 21 July 2009. Retrieved 26 July 2009.
- "LTTE New Leader Kumaran Pathmanathan (KP) arrested in Malaysia and transported to Sri Lanka". Tamil Sydney. 6 August 2009. Archived from the original on 29 September 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)". satp.org. May 2002. Archived from the original on 7 August 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "Lies Agreed Upon". Sri Lanka Ministry of Defence. 1 August 2011. Archived from the original on 24 November 2011. Retrieved 28 January 2012.
- "Perinpanayagam Sivaparan alias Nediyawan". 14 August 2009. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- "LTTE's Nediyavan released on bail in Norway". Lanka Puvath. May 2011. Archived from the original on 5 October 2011. Retrieved 28 July 2011.
- Wilson, A. J. (2000). Sri Lankan Tamil Nationalism: Its Origins and Development in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. Sydney: C. Hurst & Co. Publishers. pp. 24, 131–132. ISBN 978-1-85065-338-7. OCLC 237448732.
- "Charles Anthony Brigade retrained". DefenceNet. 7 February 2007. Retrieved 8 October 2008.
- "Army commandos join the battle". DefenceNet. 16 March 2007. Retrieved 17 December 2008.
- "For This All that Blood was Shed". Sri Lanka Watch. 13 April 2009. Retrieved 31 July 2011.
- Tiger Air Wing participates in celebrations. TamilNet, 28 November 1998.
- Tigers confirm Air wing Archived 23 May 2011 at the Wayback Machine. TamilNet, 27 November 1998.
- Encyclopedia of Modern Worldwide Extremists and Extremist Groups, p.252.
- "Nadesan to head LTTE political wing". Chennai Online. November 2007. Archived from the original on 5 October 2011. Retrieved 31 July 2011.
- "How the LTTE was destroyed and power grab for the international network | Asian Tribune". asiantribune.com. Archived from the original on 29 June 2018. Retrieved 1 June 2018.
- Stokke, K. (2006). "Building the Tamil Eelam State: emerging state institutions and forms of governance in LTTE-controlled areas in Sri Lanka" (PDF). Third World Quarterly. 27 (6): 1021–1040. CiteSeerX 10.1.1.466.5940. doi:10.1080/01436590600850434. S2CID 45544298.
- Ranganathan, M. (2002). "Nurturing a Nation on the Net: The Case of Tamil Eelam". Nationalism and Ethnic Politics. 8 (2): 51–66. doi:10.1080/13537110208428661. S2CID 144811729.
- "Sri Lanka: women in conflict". openDemocracy. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Full text: Tamil Tiger proposals". British Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
- "History of the Organisation". The University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna). January 2000. Archived from the original on 13 July 2009. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
- "The American government's assessment of Prabhakaran". LankaWeb. Archived from the original on 24 October 2007. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Tamil National Leader Hon. V. Pirapaharan's Interview 'How I Became a Freedom Fighter' April 1994". eelamweb.com. Archived from the original on 3 August 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Hashim, Ahmed S. (28 May 2013). When Counterinsurgency Wins: Sri Lanka's Defeat of the Tamil Tigers. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 85. ISBN 978-0812206487.
- "Suicide Bombs Potent Tools of Terrorists". Washington Post. 17 July 2005. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Velupillai Pirabaharan – Women's International Day 1992". tamilnation.co. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Alison, Miranda (21 January 2009). Women and Political Violence: Female Combatants in Ethno-National Conflict. Routledge. p. 126. ISBN 9781134228942.
- "Tamil National Leader Hon. V. Pirapaharan's Interview". eelamweb.com. Archived from the original on 3 August 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Hon. V. Pirabaharan: Press conference at Killinochi 2002". Archived from the original on 6 April 2016.
- Niels Terpstra & Georg Frerks (2017). "Rebel Governance and Legitimacy: Understanding the Impact of Rebel Legitimation on Civilian Compliance with the LTTE Rule". Civil Wars. 19 (3): 297. doi:10.1080/13698249.2017.1393265.
- "World Tamil Coordinating Committee representative arrested in New York says U.S. Justice Department". Tamil Nation. December 2007. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "Tamil Canadians Dismiss Extortion Claims". sangam.org. 27 August 1999. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "Dutch authorities seek permission to question KP and other former LTTE leaders in Sri Lanka". Colombo Page. 24 May 2011. Archived from the original on 18 August 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "Tamil Rehabilitation Organization and its U.S. Branch Shut Down". ombwatch.org. 4 December 2007. Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- T. Sabaratnam. "Foundation for Tamil Eelam". ombwatch.org. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- T. Sabaratnam (7 March 1998). "Tamil Guerrillas in Sri Lanka: Deadly and Armed to the Teeth". New York Times. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "LTTE runs illegal operations overseas – Minister Gunawardena". priu.gov.lk. 2011. Archived from the original on 11 January 2012. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "LTTE ships still being used for illegal activities". Lanka Puvath. 2011. Archived from the original on 5 October 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "Sri Lanka Navy destroy three LTTE ships and demolish their arms shipment capabilities". Sri Lanka Navy. 2007. Archived from the original on 26 October 2007. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "Tamil Migrant Ship M/V Sun Sea will arrive Canada by Aug 14th". Asian Tribune. 2010. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- "The acquired LTTE ship, "PRINCESS CHRISANTA" brought in to Colombo Harbour by Sri Lanka Navy". Sri Lanka Navy. 2009. Archived from the original on 2 November 2011. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Sri Lanka finds LTTE fighter planes in Eritrea – Report". Jimma Times. 2009. Archived from the original on 3 October 2011. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Eritrea providing direct military assistance to LTTE – USSFRC". Ministry of Defense. 2007. Archived from the original on 23 September 2012. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Axis of Evil: Norway-LTTE-Eritrea, and call to 'expose double standard of the West'". Asian Tribune. 2007. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Norway, Solheim helped establish LTTE-Eritrea links for arms deals". Lanka Web. 2009. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Prabhakaran's latest fireworks aimed at hitting headlines". Lanka Newspapers. 2009. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Sri Lanka Goes After LTTE assets in Eritrea " The Eight Man Team". Lrrp.wordpress.com. 14 September 2009. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
- "Council on Foreign Relations". Archived from the original on 26 May 2010.
- "MIPT Terrorism Knowledge Base". Archived from the original on 19 August 2014.
- "Indian Court upholds LTTE ban". BBC News. 11 November 2008. Retrieved 11 February 2009.
- "Foreign Terrorist Organizations". U.S. Government, Office of Counterterrorism. 11 October 2005. Archived from the original on 17 November 2017. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Treasury Targets U.S. Front for Sri Lankan Terrorist Organization". US Department of the Treasury. 11 February 2009. Archived from the original on 17 February 2009. Retrieved 11 February 2009.
- "Terrorism Act 2000". Schedule 2, Act No. 11 of 2000.
- "Council Common Position 2009/67/CFSP". Council of the European Union. 26 January 2009. Archived from the original on 27 May 2012. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Currently listed entities: LTTE". Canadian Government. 28 November 2008. Archived from the original on 19 November 2006. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Thalayasingam Sivakumar (Appellant) v Minister of Employment and Immigration (Respondent)". Canadian Government. 4 November 1993. Archived from the original on 5 June 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Peace talks team for Thailand finalised: Government lifts LTTE proscription". Daily News. 5 September 2002. Archived from the original on 18 January 2012. Retrieved 11 February 2009.
- Government Information Department (7 January 2009). "LTTE is banned by the SL Govt: with immediate effect". Ministry of Defence, Sri Lanka. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Malaysia arrests two politicians suspected of links to Sri Lanka rebel group". Reuters. 10 October 2019. Retrieved 11 October 2019.
- "Timeline: Sri Lanka". BBC News. BBC News. 6 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Kasturisinghe, Channa (11 January 2009). "LTTE ban: Step towards law and order in regained areas". The Nation. Archived from the original on 12 May 2013. Retrieved 23 May 2012.
- "India extends ban on LTTE". 14 July 2012.
- "EU court overturns Tamil Tiger sanctions but maintains asset freeze". Reuters. Reuters.in. 16 October 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014.
- "European court annuls sanctions on LTTE". Deccan Chronicle. 17 October 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014.
- "LTTE Ban in EU Remains". The Sunday Leader. Archived from the original on 18 May 2015. Retrieved 3 May 2015.
- "EU reimposes ban on LTTE: SL". The Daily Mirror. Retrieved 3 May 2015.
- "Council Decision (CFSP) 2015/521 of 26 March 2015 updating and amending the list of persons, groups and entities subject to Articles 2, 3 and 4 of Common Position 2001/931/CFSP on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism, and repealing Decision 2014/483/CFSP". Access to European Union law. Retrieved 3 May 2015.
- "EU court keeps Hamas on terrorism list, removes Tamil Tigers". Reuters. 26 July 2017. Retrieved 18 September 2017.
- "LTTE remains a terrorist organisation: EU". The Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka). 26 July 2017. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- "LTTE to remain on EU's terrorism list despite ECJ's ruling". Daily News (Sri Lanka). 27 July 2017. Retrieved 19 September 2017.
- "LTTE to intensify struggle for self-determination if reasonable political solution is not offered soon". TamilNet. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Maha Veerar Naal Address, மாவீரர் நாள் 2001". tamilnation.co. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Prabhakaran asks West to redefine terrorism". The Hindu. Retrieved 27 June 2016.[dead link]
- "LTTE not a terrorist organisation – Karen Parker". tamilnation.co. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Stanford. sfn error: no target: CITEREFStanford (help)
- South Asian Folklore: An Encyclopedia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka(2003), p. 386.
- Richards, Joanne (2014). "An Institutional History of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)" (PDF). The Centre on Conflict, Development and Peacebuilding. 10: 18.
- Sri Lankan Ethnic Crisis: Towards a Resolution (2002), p. 76.
- "Sri Lanka (LTTE) Historical Background". IISS Armed Conflict Database. International Institute for Strategic Studies. 2003. Archived from the original on 12 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Taming the Tamil Tigers". Federal Bureau of Investigation. fbi.gov. 1 October 2008. Archived from the original on 13 February 2008. Retrieved 7 March 2009.
- "LTTE's bomb Attack – Sri Dalada Maligawa in Sri Lanka". Society for Peace, Unity and Human Rights in Sri Lanka. January 1998. Archived from the original on 22 January 2009. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "LTTE Tamil Tiger suicide bomb attack near Sambuddhaloka temple in Colombo, Sri Lanka targeting civilians". Society for Peace, Unity and Human Rights in Sri Lanka. 16 May 2008. Archived from the original on 31 January 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Gambetta, D. (26 May 2005). Making sense of suicide missions. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 60–70. ISBN 978-0-19-927699-8.
- "Tamil Tiger 'regret' over Gandhi". BBC. 27 June 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2007.
- "We killed Rajiv, confesses LTTE". The Times of India. 28 June 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2007.
- Baker, Mark (16 September 2002). "Hopes high for end to Sri Lanka war". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 10 May 2007.
- "Sri Lanka: In the name of clemency". Front Line. 21 January 2000. Archived from the original on 21 May 2006. Retrieved 18 June 2011.
- "Analysis: Questions about the Bomb Blasts". K.T.Rajasingham. 2 January 2000. Retrieved 18 June 2011.
- "The Mission of Truth −3". Ministry of Defense, Sri Lanka. Archived from the original on 3 June 2011. Retrieved 18 June 2011.
- "Unmasking of Prabhakaran". Retrieved 10 August 2011.
- "Minister Douglas Devananda: More detail emerges on the suicide attack". Asian Tribune. 28 November 2007. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012. Retrieved 10 August 2011.
- "Caught on camera: Lanka bra bomber's blast". IBN Live. 1 December 2007. Archived from the original on 11 January 2012. Retrieved 10 August 2011.
- "Suicide terrorism: a global threat". Jane's Information Group. 20 October 2000. Archived from the original on 4 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Q&A: Sri Lanka, killing of Former Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadiragamar was killed by LTTE in 2005. elections". BBC. February 2009. Retrieved 10 May 2007.
- "Sri Lanka: Searching for a solution". BBC. 11 August 1999. Retrieved 10 May 2007.
- T. S. Subramanian (August 1999). "Chronicle of murders". Hindu Net. Archived from the original on 9 July 2010.
- Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (28 February 2005). "Sri Lanka". Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2004. United States Department of State. Retrieved 9 February 2009.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
- United Nations Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions (5 September 2006). UN Expert welcomes Proposed Sri Lanka Commission. Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Ganguly, Meenakshi (11 September 2006). "Sri Lanka: time to act". Open Democracy.
- Clapham, Andrew (27 January 2006). "Human Rights Obligations of Non-State Actors" (PDF). Academy of European Law, European University Institute. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 February 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) (10 January 2008). "Taming The Tamil Tigers". U.S. Federal Government, U.S. Department of Justice. Archived from the original on 13 February 2008. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "No, war doesn't have to mean rape". womenundersiegeproject.org. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Wood, Elizabeth (1 March 2009). "Armed Groups and Sexual Violence: When Is Wartime Rape Rare?". Politics & Society. 37 (1): 131–161. doi:10.1177/0032329208329755. S2CID 154539643. Retrieved 27 February 2021.
- M.R.R.Hoole, The Tamil Secessionist Movement in Sri Lanka (Ceylon): A Case of Secession by Default? http://www.uthr.org/Rajan/selfdet.htm Archived 3 October 2020 at the Wayback Machine
- Nadira Gunatilleke (24 May 2007). "Aranthalawa massacre, one of the darkest chapters in Lankan history". Daily News. Archived from the original on 7 February 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- "Sri Lanka Tamil Terror". The Time. 27 May 1985. Archived from the original on 14 January 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- "Human rights violations in a context of armed conflict". Amnesty International USA. Archived from the original on 14 February 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- David Shelby (15 June 2006). "United States Condemns Terrorist Attack on Sri Lankan Bus". US Department of State. Archived from the original on 2 February 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- "Timeline of the Tamil conflict". BBC News. 4 September 2000. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- "1996: Fifty dead in Sri Lanka suicide bombing". BBC News. 31 January 1996. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
- Hawdon, James; Ryan, John; Lucht, Marc (6 August 2014). The Causes and Consequences of Group Violence: From Bullies to Terrorists. ISBN 9780739188972.
- "Tamil National Leader Hon. V. Pirapaharan's Interview "The Eye of the Tiger"". eelamweb.com. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "Tamil National Leader Hon. V. Pirapaharan's Military Campaign messages". eelamweb.com. Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- Bose, Sumantra (30 June 2009). Contested Lands. Harvard University Press. p. 21. ISBN 9780674028562.
- "Rebels Reported to Kill 119 in Sri Lanka". The New York Times. Associated Press. 13 August 1990. Retrieved 9 February 2021.
- "Sri Lanka's North I: The Denial of Minority Rights" (PDF). International Crisis Group. pp. 22–23. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 May 2016. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "THE LONG SHADOW OF WAR THE STRUGGLE FOR JUSTICE IN POSTWAR SRI LANKA" (PDF). Oakland Institute. pp. 20–22. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "REFUGEES AND RELATED MATTERS". uthr.org. UTHR-J. Archived from the original on 7 May 2020. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
- "Human rights and The Issues of War and Peace". uthr.org. UTHR. Archived from the original on 6 May 2020. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
- "SRI LANKA: At least 90 more civilians killed" (PDF). amnesty.org. Amnesty International. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
- Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (23 February 2000). "Sri Lanka: Country Reports on Human Rights Practices". United States Department of State. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "Human Rights Watch World Report 2006 – Sri Lanka". United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 18 January 2006. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "Child Soldier Use 2003: A Briefing for the 4th UN Security Council Open Debate on Children and Armed Conflict: Sri Lanka". Human Rights Watch. January 2003. Archived from the original on 16 May 2007. Retrieved 13 February 2009.
- Raman, Nachammai (29 November 2006). "Outrage over child soldiers in Sri Lanka". The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "UN plea to Tigers on child troops". BBC News. BBC News. 14 February 2006. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "UN says Sri Lankan group continues to recruit child soldiers". International Herald Tribune. Associated Press. 27 April 2007. Archived from the original on 28 October 2007. Retrieved 10 February 2009.
- "Children being caught up in recruitment drive in north east". United Nations Children's Fund. 26 June 2004. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Sri Lanka: Child Tsunami Victims Recruited by Tamil Tigers". Human Rights Watch. 13 January 2005. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Tamil Tigers 'drafting children'". BBC News. BBC News. 13 January 2005. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Sri Lanka: Amnesty International urges LTTE to live up to its pledge to end child recruitment". Amnesty International. 10 July 2007. Archived from the original on 22 October 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Status of UNICEF database on underage LTTE members". Peace Secretariat of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam. 23 January 2009. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Security Council open debate on children and armed conflict: Statement by SRSG Radhika Coomaraswamy". Relief Web. 29 April 2009. Retrieved 15 May 2009.
- "Living in Fear". Human Rights Watch. 11 November 2004. Retrieved 11 June 2016.
- "IV. LTTE Recruitment of Children During the Cease-Fire". hrw.org. Human Rights Watch. Retrieved 3 May 2020.
- "Agreements Reached Between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam". Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission. 23 February 2006.[dead link]
- "Karuna faction recruiting child soldiers in Lanka: UN". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 31 January 2008. Archived from the original on 7 November 2012. Retrieved 7 March 2009.
- "Tamil Tigers: A fearsome force". BBC News. BBC News. 2 May 2000. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Reddy, B. Muralidhar (13 April 2007). "Ethnic cleansing: Colombo". The Hindu. Chennai, India. Archived from the original on 1 May 2007. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Rubin, Barnett (1987). Cycles of Violence: Human Rights in Sri Lanka Since the Indo-Sri Lanka Agreement. Human Rights Watch. ISBN 9780938579434. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
- Nubin, Walter (1 January 2002). Sri Lanka: Current Issues and Historical Background. Nova Publishers. p. 11. ISBN 9781590335734.
- Morland, Paul (23 May 2016). Demographic Engineering: Population Strategies in Ethnic Conflict. Routledge. p. 67. ISBN 9781317152927.
- Dixit, Priya; Stump, Jacob L. (26 June 2015). Critical Methods in Terrorism Studies. Routledge. ISBN 9781317692942.
- McGilvray, Dennis B. (16 April 2008). Crucible of Conflict: Tamil and Muslim Society on the East Coast of Sri Lanka. Duke University Press. p. 11. ISBN 978-0822389187.
- "The Expulsion And Expropriation of Muslims in the North". University Teachers for Human Rights (Jaffna), Sri Lanka. 2001. Archived from the original on 18 August 2009. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- Pararajasingham, Ana (December 2005). The Conflict in Sri Lanka: Ground Realities (PDF). International Federation of Tamils (IFT). p. 16. ISBN 978-0-9775092-0-1. Retrieved 9 February 2009.
- "Recalling the saddest day in Lankan Police history". Lanka Newspapers. Lanka Newspapers. 2011. Archived from the original on 15 June 2011. Retrieved 12 June 2011.
- "Strategic Pooneryn's fall a humiliating blow to Tiger Supremo; Battle of Pooneryn efficiently accomplished". Sri Lanka Army. Sri Lanka Army. Retrieved 12 June 2011.[dead link]
- "The Sunday Times Situation Report". sundaytimes.lk.
- "Account Suspended". crimesofwar.org. Archived from the original on 31 December 2008.
- Take a Step to Stamp Out Torture (PDF) (Report). Amnesty International. 2000. p. 18. Retrieved 1 March 2021.
- Jayatunge, Ruwan (22 June 2014). "The POWs Of The Eelam War". Colombo Telegraph. Retrieved 15 March 2021.
- Block, Wendell; Lee, Jessica Lee; Vijayasingham, Kera (10 October 2017). "Mercy for money: Torture's link to profit in Sri Lanka, a retrospective review". Torture. 27 (1): 37. doi:10.7146/torture.v27i1.26532. PMID 28607228. Retrieved 2 March 2021.
- Report of the OHCHR Investigation on Sri Lanka, September 2015 (Report). OHCHR. September 2015. p. 1.
- "Sri Lanka: US War Crimes Report Details Extensive Abuses". Human Rights Watch. 22 October 2009. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- "Govt.: LTTE Executed Soldiers". The Sunday Leader. 8 December 2010. Archived from the original on 12 December 2010. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- "Report of the UNSG's panel of experts on accountability in SL". The Island, Sri Lanka. 16 April 2011.
- "UN panel admits international failure in Vanni war, calls for investigations". TamilNet. 16 April 2011.
- "Summary of UN Panel report". Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka). 16 April 2011. Archived from the original on 19 April 2011. Retrieved 22 April 2011.
- "Sri Lankan military committed war crimes: U.N. panel". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 16 April 2011.
- "Leaked UN report urges Sri Lanka war crimes probe". France24. 16 April 2011. Archived from the original on 3 May 2011.
- Balasingham, Adele (2003). The Will to Freedom – An Inside View of Tamil Resistance (2 ed.). Fairmax Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1-903679-03-6.
- Balasingham, Anton (2004). War and Peace – Armed Struggle and Peace Efforts of Liberation Tigers (1 ed.). Fairmax Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1-903679-05-0.
- De Votta, Neil (2004). Blowback: Linguistic Nationalism, Institutional Decay, and Ethnic Conflict in Sri Lanka. Stanford University Press. ISBN 978-0-8047-4924-4.
- Gamage, Siri; Watson, I. B. (1999). Conflict and Community in Contemporary Sri Lanka – 'Pearl of the East' or 'Island of Tears'?. SAGE Publications. ISBN 978-0-7619-9393-3.
- Gunaratna, Rohan (1998). Sri Lanka's Ethnic Crisis and National Security (1 ed.). South Asian Network on Conflict Research. ISBN 978-955-8093-00-9.
- Gunaratna, Rohan (1987). War and Peace in Sri Lanka: With a Post-Accord Report From Jaffna (1 ed.). Institute of Fundamental Studies. ISBN 978-955-26-0001-2.
- Hellmann-Rajanayagam, Dagmar (1994). The Tamil Tigers:armed struggle for identity. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-3-515-06530-6.
- La, J (September 2004). Forced remittances in Canada's Tamil enclaves. Peace review 16:3. pp. 379–385. ISBN 978-3-515-06530-6.
- Mehta, Raj (2010). Lost Victory: The Rise & Fall of LTTE Supremo, V. Prabhakaran (1 ed.). Pentagon Press. ISBN 978-81-8274-443-1.
- Pratap, Anita (2001). Island of Blood: Frontline Reports From Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Other South Asian Flashpoints. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-0-14-302906-9.
- Swamy, M.R. Narayan (2003). Inside an Elusive Mind Prabhakaran: The First Profile of the Worlds Most Ruthless Guerrilla Leader (1 ed.). Literate World, Inc. ISBN 978-81-220-0657-5.
- Swamy, M. R. Narayan (2010). The Tiger Vanquished: LTTE's Story (1 ed.). Sage Publications Pvt. Ltd. ISBN 978-81-321-0459-9.
- Swamy, M. R. Narayan (2002). Tigers of Lanka: from Boys to Guerrillas (2 ed.). Konark Publishers. ISBN 978-81-220-0631-5.
- Chellamuthu Kuppusamy (2009). Prabhakaran – The Story of his struggle for Eelam. New Horizon Media Pvt Ltd. ISBN 978-81-8493-168-6. Archived from the original on 17 November 2012.
- Chellamuthu Kuppusamy (2008). பிரபாகரன்: ஒரு வாழ்க்கை. New Horizon Media Pvt Ltd. ISBN 978-81-8493-039-9. Archived from the original on 26 December 2012.
- "Child Soldier Use 2003: A Briefing for the 4th UN Security Council Open Debate". Human Rights Watch. January 2003. Archived from the original on 16 May 2007. Retrieved 13 February 2009.
- "Taming the Tamil Tigers, From Here in the U.S." Federal Bureau of Investigation. January 2008. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.|
LTTE web sites
Sri Lanka Government
- Humanitarian Operation – Factual Analysis, July 2006 – May 2009 A report on strength and impact of LTTE from Sri Lanka Ministry of Defense
- Humanitarian Operation timeline, 1981–2009 The history of Sri Lankan armed forces operations and area controlled by LTTE
- Sri Lanka Ministry of Defence LTTE in Brief An overview of LTTE by Sri Lanka Ministry of Defense
- An analysis of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam organization and operations by Federation of American Scientists
- Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora After LTTE Relationship between LTTE and the Tamil diaspora, and consequences of LTTE defeat, by International Crisis Group
- Background information on the Tamil Tigers by Council on Foreign Relations
- Overview of Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam by Anti-Defamation League
- Funding the "Final War" A Human Rights Watch report on LTTE's fund raising strategies
- Trapped and Mistreated Human rights violations of LTTE, a Human Rights Watch report
- Sri Lankan Civilians Trapped by Tamil Tigers 'Last Stand' Article appeared on The Christian Science Monitor, 3 May 2009
- Guerrilla Tactics – How the Tamil Tigers Were Beaten in an 'Unwinnable' War Article appeared on The Times, 19 May 2009
- Rise and Fall of the LTTE – An Overview A Sri Lanka Guardian article on characteristics of LTTE