[QODLink]
Archive
Tamil Tiger apology to India
A senior Tamil Tiger leader has apologised to India for the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi, a former Indian prime minister, in 1991.
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2006 15:11 GMT
Congress leader Rajiv was killed by a suicide bomber in 1991
A senior Tamil Tiger leader has apologised to India for the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi, a former Indian prime minister, in 1991.

"I would say it is a great tragedy, a monumental historical tragedy for which we deeply regret and we call upon the government of India and people of India to be magnanimous to put the past behind," Anton Balasingham, the chief negotiator for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), said in an interview with India's NDTV news channel.

Rajiv was killed in protest at India's involvement in Sri Lanka's civil war. Indian soldiers were sent to the north of the island as peacekeepers in 1987.

They ended up fighting with the Tigers and withdrew in 1990.

The Tigers have admitted their role in the attack before but this is the strongest expression of regret from the separatists.

Rajiv was killed by a suicide bomber while campaigning for his Congress Party in the run-up to national elections.

Fourteen other people were also killed in the attack in the town of Sriperumbudur, near Chennai [formerly Madras], the capital of the southern state of Tamil Nadu.

The Tigers have pledged not to work against India's interests, Balasingham told NDTV, saying India should be "actively involved in the peace process".

The LTTE fought a civil war against the Sri Lankan government which lasted nearly two decades. They want to create an homeland for ethnic Tamils in the east of the country.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Indonesia's digerati could be crucial to success in the country's upcoming presidential election.
How Brazil's football legend turned every Corinthians' match into a political meeting for democracy.
As the Pakistani army battles Taliban forces, civilians in North Waziristan face an arduous escape for relative safety.
Nepalese trade in a libido-boosting fungus is booming but experts warn over-exploitation could destroy ecosystem.
Featured
Sri Lanka refugees stranded on a boat near Australia's shoreline are in legal limbo and fear torture if sent home.
The death of Hamed Shehab on Wednesday in an Israeli air strike has triggered fear and anger among journalists in Gaza.
Israel's strategy in Gaza remains uncertain, as internal politics are at play for PM Netanyahu.
Greece is holding as many as 6,000 migrants in detention centres, in conditions that have been called appalling.
Long derided for trivialising women, Bollywood is shrugging off its trademark social apathy by upping anti-rape crusade.
join our mailing list