Letter to Interior Minister Asks For Tamil Tigers Investigation

The Foreign Affairs Ministry has written to Interior Minister Sar Kheng requesting his ministry investigate the actions of a foundation supporting Sri Lanka’s separatist Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam in Cambodia, according to a copy of the letter received Sunday.

Dated Feb 26 and signed by Foreign Affairs Ministry Secretary of State Long Visalo, it states that the ministry received a diplomatic notice from the US Embassy warning of the existence of the US-based Tamil Foundation.

“Please minister, be informed about this organization and take measures to investigate the actions of this organization,” the letter states, but does not elaborate or state whether the Tamil Foundation is known to be active within Cambodia.

In July 2007 an international security magazine, Jane’s Intelligence Review, reported Cambodia was a significant source of weapons for the Tamil Tigers, but failed to mention its sources. The government denied the report’s findings at the time, saying that Cambodia had destroyed many of its surplus arms, and that the report referred to the situation before 1998.

Foreign Ministry Secretary of State Long Visalo, declined to comment on the request to the Interior Ministry, adding he did not remember receiving the US Embassy’s diplomatic notice 133, which is specified in the letter.

US Embassy spokesman John Johnson said he was unfamiliar with the notice, adding that other embassy staff he contacted Sunday also did not know about the document.

The US Treasury Department said in a news release on its website that it had designated the Tamil Foundation, based in Cumberland, Maryland, as a terrorist group.

The foundation had co-mingled funds and carried out coordinated financial transactions with another charitable organization, which acts as a front to facilitate fundraising and procurement for the Tigers, ac-

cording to the statement.

Deputy National Police Chief Sok Phal said Sunday he could not com-

ment as he was unaware of the request.

The Tamil Tigers have been wag-

ing a violent secessionist campaign since the 1970s and have been sanc-

tioned as a terrorist organization by dozens of governments, including the US, European Union and India.

 

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