Sri Lankan Ambassador to the US Jaliya Wickramasuriya has asked the Tamil Tigers to stop the use of child soldiers in the conflict,alleging that the LTTE is recruiting them to serve its political agenda.
“It is alarming that LTTE terrorists continue their blatant pattern of recruiting children to serve their own political agendas. It is an intolerable practice and must be stopped,” the Sri Lankan Ambassador said in a statement.
The statement has been issued coinciding with launch of a media campaign by UNICEF and the Sri Lankan Government to bring to an end such a practice by the LTTE.
“We are hopeful this new campaign with UNICEF will help end the manipulation and suffering of Sri Lankan children,” Wickramasuriya said.
“The image of Sri Lanka,for far too long,said Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the launch of the Sri Lanka National Campaign against the Recruitment of Children for Use in Armed Conflict,has been stained by the presence of child soldiers in our country,” he said.
“But,more important than erasing the stain in our image,is the need to save our children from this special horror of terror,the most savage of the chosen weapons of terror,that has been the menace of our society for nearly three decades,” he said.
UNICEF has recorded more than 6,000 cases of children recruited by LTTE from 2003 to 2008.