US embassy cable - 89COLOMBO2434

WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO THE LTTE?

Identifier: 89COLOMBO2434
Wikileaks: View 89COLOMBO2434 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Colombo
Created: 1989-04-11 05:25:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: KPRP PREL PGOV PINR PINS PTER CE IN
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
O 110525Z APR 89
FM AMEMBASSY COLOMBO
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3851
INFO AMEMBASSY NEW DELHI PRIORITY
AMEMBASSY LONDON PRIORITY
AMCONSUL MADRAS PRIORITY
USCINCPAC HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 COLOMBO 02434 
 
DEPT ALSO FOR NEA/INS - JBARNES 
 
E.O. 12356:  DECL:OADR 
TAGS:  KPRP, PREL, PGOV, PINR, PINS, PTER, CE, IN 
SUBJECT:  WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO THE LTTE? 
 
REFS:  (A)  COLOMBO 2392;  (B)  COLOMBO 2052; 
       (C)  COLOMBO 1957 
 
 
1.  CONFIDENTIAL -- ENTIRE TEXT. 
 
2.  THIS REPORT IS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT 
OF THE 1989 POST REPORTING PLAN. 
 
3.  SUMMARY:  THERE IS STILL STRONG SUPPORT FOR 
THE LIBERATION TIGERS OF TAMIL EELAM (LTTE) 
AMONG THE 1.5 MILLION TAMILS IN SRI LANKA'S 
NORTH AND EAST, WHO SEE THE TIGERS AS THE 
DEFENDERS OF LEGITIMATE TAMIL MINORITY RIGHTS. 
AT THE SAME TIME, THERE IS WIDE AGREEMENT AMONG 
LTTE SUPPORTERS AND DETRACTORS THAT THE TIME 
HAS COME FOR THE TIGERS TO LAY ASIDE THEIR WEAPONS 
AND PURSUE THEIR OBJECTIVES THROUGH DEMOCRATIC 
MEANS.  POLITICALLY, THE LTTE'S STILL DEEP 
RESERVOIR OF SUPPORT IS LITTLE THREATENED 
BY INDIA'S THREE TAMIL MILITANT ALLIES.  THE 
MORE HARDLINE EELAM REVOLUTIONARY ORGANIZATION 
OF STUDENTS (EROS) OWES MUCH OF ITS NEW- 
FOUND POPULARITY TO ITS CLOSE ASSOCIATION 
WITH THE LTTE, AND THROUGH THIS GROUP THE LTTE 
MAY BE LOOKING FOR A WAY TO MODERATE ITS 
STANCE.  MILITARILY, THE LTTE HAS BEEN WEAKENED 
BY 18 MONTHS OF FIGHTING THE IPKF.  YET IT 
CONTINUES TO RECEIVE NEW RECRUITS AND IT 
APPEARS TO HAVE THE MEANS OF CONTINUING TO 
ACQUIRE ARMS AND AMMUNITION.  THE STRONG 
CONVICTIONS OF THE LTTE LEADERS AND THEIR 
DISTRUST OF INDIAN MOTIVES HAVE MUCH TO DO 
WITH THE GROUP'S INTRANSIGENCE.  THERE ARE, 
HOWEVER, INDICATIONS THAT THE LTTE WOULD 
AGAIN LIKE TO NEGOTIATE.  IN THE VIEW OF THE 
OVERWHELMING MAJORITY  OF TAMILS IN THE NORTH 
EAST WITH HHOM WE HAVE SPOKEN, TALKS WITH 
THE TIGERS OFFER THE BEST HOPE OF FORGING 
A LASTING PEACE IN THE REGION.  END SUMMARY. 
 
4.  THE LIBERATION TIGERS OF TAMIL EELAM (LTTE) 
STILL HAVE STRONG SUPPORT AMONG THE 1.5 MILLION 
TAMILS IN SRI LANKA'S NORTH AND EAST, WHERE 
THEY ARE SEEN AS FIGHTERS IN A LEGITIMATE 
STRUGGLE FOR TAMIL MINORITY RIGHTS.  NOT ALL 
WHO SUPPORT THE GROUP AGREE WITH ITS SINGLE- 
MINDED INSISTENCE ON A SEPARATE STATE, BUT 
FEW TAKE ISSUE WITH ITS DECISION TO TAKE UP 
ARMS, AND THERE IS STRONG SYMPATHY FOR LTTE 
MEMBERS BECAUSE OF THEIR WILLINGNESS TO DIE 
FOR A CAUSE MOST BELIEVE IS JUST. 
 
 
        ------------------------------- 
        SUPPORT STRONGEST IN THE NORTH, 
            SIGNIFICANT IN THE EAST 
        ------------------------------- 
 
5.  LTTE SUPPORT IS MOST EVIDENT IN JAFFNA 
AND THE NORTHERN WANNI, WHERE LARGE NUMBERS 
OF THE POPULACE KNOW OF THE LTTE CADRES' 
ACTIVITIES AND CONCEAL THEIR KNOWLEDGE FROM 
THE AUTHORITIES.  "OUTSIDE THE TOWNS (IN THE 
WANNI) THEY'RE EVERYWHERE", JAFFNA MUNICIPAL 
COMMISSIONER AND NEWLY APPOINTED KILINOCHCHI 
GOVERNMENT AGENT ANTON ALFRED SAID.  "THE PEOPLE 
BRING THEM FOOD, AND SHELTER THE LTTE CADRES", 
HE ADDED. 
 
6.  IN TRINCOMALEE AND BATTICALOA IN THE FORMER 
EASTERN PROVINCE, THE INDIAN PEACE KEEPING FORCE 
(IPKF) AND ITS TAMIL MILITANT ALLIES, THE 
EELAM PEOPLE'S REVOLUTIONARY LIBERATION FRONT 
(EPRLF), THE TAMIL EELAM LIBERATION ORGANIZATION 
(TELO), AND THE EELAM NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC 
LIBERATION FRONT (ENDLF), HAVE KILLED MANY 
LTTE CADRES AND DRIVEN MANY MORE FROM THE TOWNS 
INTO THE COUNTRYSIDE.  YET THERE, TOO, SUPPORT 
FOR THE LTTE IS STILL THE NORM.  ALFRED 
ADDED THAT MEMBERS OF THE EPRLF-DOMINATED 
PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT HEADQUARTERED IN 
TRINCOMALEE CANNOT MOVE OUTSIDE OF THE TOWN 
FOR FEAR OF LTTE AMBUSH. 
 
7.  THE  TIGERS HAVE PARTICULARLY STRONG 
SUPPORT AMONG THE "UNDER-4O" AGE GROUP.  BUT 
THERE IS ALSO SYMPATHY FOR THE LTTE AMONG OLDER 
PERSONS WHO HAVE SEEN HOPES FOR THEIR CHILDREN 
DISAPPOINTED, DUE TO CIRCUMSTANCES THEY ATTRIBUTE 
TO SINHALA-CHAUVINIST POLICIES OF SUCCESSIVE 
POST-INDEPENDENCE SRI LANKAN GOVERNMENTS. 
ONE SIGNIFICANT BLOCK OF DETRACTORS THE LTTE 
HAS AMONG TAMILS IN THE NORTH AND EAST ARE THE 
FAMILY MEMBERS AND FELLOW CADRES OF THE ESTIMATED 
700 RIVAL TAMIL MILITANTS THE LTTE HAS KILLED 
SINCE 1986. 
 
 
          -------------------------- 
          LITTLE THREAT TO POTENTIAL 
              ELECTORAL STRENGTH 
          -------------------------- 
 
8.  IN TERMS OF POTENTIAL ELECTORAL  SUPPORT, 
THE LTTE'S DOMINANT POSITION IS LITTLE THREATENED 
BY THE THREE MILITANT GROUPS INDIA HAS SOUGHT 
TO INSTALL AS AN ALTERNATIVE TAMIL LEADERSHIP. 
IN JAFFNA, WHERE 2,000 CIVILIAN DEATHS AT THE 
HANDS OF THE IPKF DURING ITS OCTOBER 1987 
OFFENSIVE HAVE LEFT DEEP SCARS, MEMBERS OF THE 
EPRLF, TELO AND ENDLF ARE WIDELY THOUGHT OF AS 
TRAITORS.  AND IN THE EAST, WHERE A LARGER 
MEASURE OF GRASSROOTS SUPPORT EXISTS FOR THESE 
GROUPS, THE INABILITY OF THE PROVINCIAL 
GOVERNMENT TO EFFECT CHANGE, AND THE CENTRAL 
GOVERNMENT'S APPARENT INDIFFERENCE TO THE 
EPRLF'S CALL FOR A POSTPONEMENT OF THE JULY 5 
REFERENDUM ON THE MERGER OF THE NORTH AND 
EAST IS UNDERMINING CONFIDENCE IN THE PROVINCIAL 
GOVERNMENT, ACCORDING TO PUBLIC OFFICIALS AND 
EPRLF MEMBERS. 
 
9.  LEADERS OF THE EPRLF, TELO, THE EELAM 
REVOLUTIONARY ORGANIZATION OF STUDENTS (EROS), AND 
THE HARDLINE PEOPLE'S LIBERATION ORGANIZATION 
OF TAMIL EELAM (PLOTE), HAVE PRIVATELY 
ACKNOWLEDGED THE LTTE'S POPULARITY.  AS EPRLF 
COLOMBO SPOKESMAN "WILSON" TOLD POLOFF RECENTLY, 
IF THE LTTE CONTESTED AN ELECTION IN THE NORTH 
AND EAST TOMORROW, "THEY WOULD WIN EASILY". 
HIS STATEMENT WAS CONTRADICTED BY FEW OF THE 
MANY GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS, POLITICIANS, 
MILITANTS AND CITIZENS OF THE NORTH AND EAST 
INTERVIEWED FOR THIS REPORT OVER THE FIRST THREE 
MONTHS OF 1989. 
 
 
            ----------------------- 
            VOTERS "SENT A MESSAGE" 
                  TO THE LTTE 
            ----------------------- 
 
10.  AT THE SAME TIME, SUPPORT FOR THE LTTE'S 
HARDLINE EELAMIST STANCE IS DECLINING.  POCKETS 
OF SUPPORT FOR THIS POLICY EXIST, PARTICULARLY 
AMONG STUDENTS AND THE YOUNG ADULT UNEMPLOYED 
OF THE JAFFNA PENINSULA.  BUT BY AND LARGE, 
MOST PERSONS WE TALKED TO WOULD LIKE TO SEE 
THE LTTE PUT ASIDE VIOLENCE AND PURSUE ITS 
STRUGGLE THROUGH NEGOTIATION AND PARTICIPATION 
IN DEMOCRATIC POLITICS. 
 
11.  THAT WAS THE MESSAGE OF THE STRONG SUPPORT 
FOR THE EROS SLATE IN THE FEBRUARY 15 PARLIAMENTARY 
VOTING, IN WHICH 13 EROS CANDIDATES (SOME OF 
THEM CLOSELY ASSOCIATED WITH THE LTTE) WERE 
ELECTED, EROS GENERAL SECRETARY VELUPILLAI 
BALAKUMAR TOLD POLOFF.  "IT WAS NOT AN LTTE 
VOTE, AND IT WAS NOT AN EROS VOTE", BALAKUMAR 
SAID.  "IT WAS A VOTE FOR PEACE."  EROS' 
SUCCESS AT THE POLLS IS PARTLY ATTRIBUTABLE 
TO MANY VOTERS' BELIEF THAT THE GROUP'S 
CANDIDATES STOOD IN PROXY FOR THE LTTE.  BUT 
MANY RESIDENTS AGREED WITH BALAKUMAR'S 
ASSESSMENT, TELLING US THAT THE DESIRE TO 
"SEND A MESSAGE" OF THEIR WISH FOR PEACE 
CAUSED THEM TO DEFY LTTE BANS ON VOTING TO 
CAST BALLOTS FEBRUARY 15 AND IN THE NOVEMBER 19, 
1988, PROVINCIAL COUNCIL ELECTION IN THE EAST. 
 
12.  IT IS ALSO POSSIBLE THAT THE LTTE IS 
ATTEMPTING TO MODERATE ITS POSITION AND WIN 
RENEWED NEGOTIATIONS WITH INDIA THROUGH EROS. 
LTTE JAFFNA POLITICAL WING LEADER "KANDASAMY" 
TOLD AN EMBASSY FSN THAT THE LTTE PERMITTED EROS 
TO RUN AND ENCOURAGED VOTING IN THE FINAL DAYS 
OF THE CAMPAIGN.  HE ALSO SAID THE LTTE DOES 
NOT WISH EROS PARLIAMENTARIANS TO TAKE 
THEIR SEATS UNTIL THE FIGHTING STOPS IN THE 
NORTH AND EAST. 
 
 
  ------------------------------------------ 
  POTENT MILITARY FORCE, OR "NUISANCE VALUE" 
                  TERRORISTS? 
  ------------------------------------------ 
 
13.  THE LTTE'S CURRENT MILITARY CAPABILITY IS 
HARDER TO ASSESS.  SRI LANKAN MILITARY OFFICIALS, 
SUPPORTERS  OF THE LTTE AND MEMBERS OF THE 
ORGANIZATION TEND TO DESCRIBE THE GROUP AS A STILL 
POTENT FIGHTING FORCE, AMPLY ARMED, AND CONTINUALLY 
REINFORCED BY NEW RECURITS.  INDIAN MILITARY 
OFFICIALS AND LEADERS OF RIVAL MILITANT GROUPS, 
ON THE OTHER HAND, TELL US THAT THE LTTE IS 
A "SPENT" MILITARY FORCE INCAPABLE OF MORE THAN 
"NUISANCE VALUE TERRORISM" AND ATTACKS ON 
"SOFT TARGETS", LIKE SINHALESE VILLAGES IN 
TAMIL MAJORITY AREAS. 
 
14.  ESTIMATES OF THE TIGERS' NUMERICAL STRENGTH 
-- ITS ACTIVE FIGHTING MEMBERSHIP -- VARY 
ACCORDINGLY:  FROM SRI LANKAN TRINCOMALEE 
COORDINATING OFFICER BRIGADIER TILAK PARANAGAMA'S 
JANUARY ESTIMATE  OF 2,000 LTTE CADRES, TO 
NORTHEAST PROVINCE CHIEF MINISTER AND EPRLF 
NUMBER TWO A. VARATHARAJA PERUMAL'S WISHFUL 
"NO MORE THAN 300". 
 
15.  THE LTTE HAS BEEN WEAKENED BY ITS 18 
MONTHS OF FIGHTING WITH THE IPKF, ACCORDING TO 
LTTE JAFFNA POLITICAL WING LEADER "KANDASAMY". 
IPKF OFFENSIVES AT NITTIKAIKULAM, MULLAITTIVU, 
IN AUGUST 1988 AND MARCH 1989 ACCOUNTED FOR 
MORE THAN A SCORE OF TIGER DEATHS, HE SAID. 
BUT, HE ADDED, NEWSPAPER REPORTS OF 50 OR 
MORE LTTE CADRE HAVING BEEN KILLED IN EACH 
OFFENSIVE ARE INACCURATE.  THE LTTE HAS THE 
WILL, THE MEN AND THE MATERIEL TO FIGHT ON, 
KANDASAMY ASSERTED.  IN FACT, SAID KANDASAMY, 
THE LTTE HAS FORMED A 500-MEMBER "SUICIDE SQUAD" 
AND IS PLANNING TO STEP UP ATTACKS  AGAINST 
INDIAN FORCES IF THE LATEST IPKF OFFENSIVE 
DOES NOT ABATE.  (EMBASSY COMMENT:  KANDASAMY'S 
ASSERTION COULD NOT BE INDEPENDENTLY VERIFIED; 
HOWEVER, LOCAL NEWSPAPERS THIS WEEK AND LAST 
ARE REPORTING A HIGHER THAN USUAL LEVEL OF LTTE 
ACTIVITY AGAINST THE IPKF IN THE WANNI JUNGLES. 
END COMMENT.) 
 
 
            ----------------- 
            READY RECRUITS AND 
                   GUNS 
            ------------------ 
 
16.  A.J. CANAGARATNA (PROTECT), A LECTURER IN 
ENGLISH AT JAFFNA UNIVERSITY, FORMER DEPUTY EDITOR 
OF THE PRO-LTTE "SATURDAY REVIEW", AND UNTIL ABOUT 
A YEAR AGO, THE MAN WHO WROTE ENGLISH LANGUAGE 
POLICY STATEMENTS AND PRESS RELEASES FOR THE 
LTTE IN JAFFNA, SAID LTTE CADRES ARE PRESENT 
THROUGHOUT THE JAFFNA PENINSULA.  THEY OPERATE 
IN SMALL GROUPS, NEVER OF MORE THAN FIVE 
PERSONS, HIDING THEIR WEAPONS AND LIVING IN 
"SAFE HOUSES", MIXING WITH THE POPULACE BY DAY, 
AND STALKING THE IPKF AND ITS ALLIES BY NIGHT. 
ONE OF THE BIGGEST SOURCES OF NEW RECRUITS 
ARE LTTE SYMPATHIZERS HOUNDED FROM THEIR HOMES 
IN JAFFNA BY THE PRO-INDIA MILITANTS.  "THEY 
EITHER LEAVE THE COUNTRY OR GO INTO THE JUNGLES", 
CANAGARATNA SAID.  HE ADDED THAT THE LTTE GETS 
NEEDED ARMS AND AMMUNITION FROM CAPTURED 
IPKF STOCKS, AND BY BUYING WEAPONS SUPPLIED 
BY THE INDIANS FROM MEMBERS OF THE EPRLF, 
TELO AND ENDLF WHO ARE LOOKING TO MAKE EASY 
MONEY.  LEADERS OF THE RIVAL, HARDLINE GROUP PLOTE 
ALLEGE THAT THE LTTE IS STILL BEING SUPPLIED 
FROM ABROAD, WITH THE COOPERATION OF SRI 
LANKAN BUSINESSMEN. 
 
 
        --------------------------------- 
        PRABHAKARAN:  HAUNTED BY THE DEAD 
        --------------------------------- 
 
17.  DISTRUST OF INDIA'S MOTIVES IN SRI LANKA 
AND A FEELING THAT THEY HAVE BEEN BETRAYED BY 
THEIR FORMER PATRONS SEEM TO HAVE PLAYED A 
MAJOR ROLE IN HARDENING THE ATTITUDES OF THE 
LTTE LEADERSHIP.  TWO SOURCES WITH FORMERLY 
CLOSE LINKS TO VELUPILLAI PRABHAKARAN TOLD POLOFF 
THAT THE LTTE LEADER HAS REFUSED TO GIVE UP 
HIS STRUGGLE FOR EELAM BECAUSE HE FEELS A 
MORAL RESPONSIBILITY TO COMRADES WHO HAVE 
DIED FIGHTING.  BUT FORMER AIADMK FOOD 
MINISTER S. RAMACHANDRAN, WHO ACTED AS FORMER TAMIL 
NADU CHIEF MINISTER M.G. RAMACHANDRAN'S CONTACT 
MAN WITH THE LTTE, AND FORMER LTTE MEMBER 
(NOW PLOTE POLITICAL WING PRESIDENT) D. SITHARTHAN 
BOTH SAID THAT PRABHAKARAN CAN BE REASONED WITH, 
AND THAT IT IS HIS SECOND-IN-COMMAND, AJIT 
MAHATHIYA, WHO IS PROVING THE LEAST TRACTABLE OF 
ANY OF THE LTTE LEADERS. 
 
18.  OTHERS, CITING PRABHAKARAN'S AUGUST 1987 
JAFFNA SPEECH FOLLOWING THE SIGNING OF THE PEACE 
ACCORD, SAY THAT HE HAS NEVER RELINQUISHED HIS 
QUEST FOR A SEPARATE STATE.  SITHARTHAN 
SAID THAT INDIA HAD ERRED IN THINKING IT 
COULD "BUY" PRABHAKARAN WITH AN OFFER SHORT OF 
EELAM.  AND EPRLF SPOKESMAN WILSON SAID 
PRABHAKARAN'S SINGLE-MINDED ATTITUDE STILL 
DRIVES THE LTTE BECAUSE OF ITS TOTALITARIAN 
STRUCTURE, PRABHAKARAN'S RUTHLESS SUPPRESSION 
OF DISSENT, AND THE "CULT FOLLOWING" THAT HAS 
GROWN UP AROUND THE TIGERS' NUMBER ONE.  STILL 
OTHERS SAY THAT THE LTTE FEARS REPRISAL AT 
THE HANDS OF THE RIVAL MILITANT GROUPS INDIAN 
CONTINUES TO ARM. 
 
 
         --------------------------- 
         LTTE MAY AGAIN BE READY FOR 
                   TALKS 
         --------------------------- 
 
19.  THERE ARE, HOWEVER, INDICATIONS THAT THE 
LTTE WOULD AGAIN LIKE TO NEGOTIATE WITH INDIA. 
FORMER LTTE PROPAGANDA MAN CANAGARATNA SAID 
THE RIFT BETWEEN PRABHAKARAN, WHO NOW FAVORS 
COMPROMISE, AND MAHATHIYA, WHO WANTS TO KEEP 
FIGHTING, HAS WIDENED.  HE AND LTTE JAFFNA 
POLITICAL LEADER KANDASAMY SAID THAT THE LTTE 
IS PREPARED TO ACCEPT SOMETHING SHORT OF A SEPARATE 
STATE AND THAT IT WANTS A CEASEFIRE AND 
NEGOTIATIONS WITH INDIA.  BUT, SAID KANDASAMY, 
THE LTTE BELIEVES INDIA IS RESISTING TALKS 
AND PURSUING THE MILITARY OPTION AGAINST THE 
TIGERS IN ORDER TO STRENGTHEN ITS CLIENT GROUPS 
AND INSURE ITS OWN FUTURE INFLUENCE IN THE 
NORTH AND EAST.  THE CEASEFIRE IS AN IMPORTANT 
FIRST CONDITION TO THE TIGERS, BECAUSE PRABHAKARAN 
REPORTEDLY WANTS NO REPETITION OF THE FIASCO OF 
THE LAST ROUND OF TALKS IN WHICH "JOHNNY", THE 
LTTE EMISSARY BROUGHT FROM MADRAS BY THE INDIANS 
TO MEET PRABHAKARAN, WAS SHOT DEAD BY THE IPKF 
IN THE WANNI.  NOR, IT IS SAID, DOES HE WANT 
TO EXPOSE HIS CADRES TO ATTACK BY THE EPRLF, 
TELO, ENDLF AND PLOTE. 
 
              --------------- 
              EMBASSY COMMENT 
              --------------- 
 
20.  FOR THOSE CONCERNED WITH HOW DURABLE A 
SOLUTION TO THE SRI LANKAN COMMUNAL CONFLICT 
CAN BE FORGED IN THE NORTH AND EAST, ONE GOOD 
MEASURE MIGHT BE TO ASSESS NOW ACCEPTABLE IT IS 
TO THE PEOPLE IT WILL MOST DIRECTLY AFFECT. 
IN THE VIEW OF THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY OF 
TAMILS IN THE NORTH AND EAST WITH WHOM WE HAVE 
SPOKEN IN RECENT MONTHS, THERE CAN BE NO LASTING 
SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM WITHOUT THE PARTICIPATION 
OF THE LTTE. 
 
21.  SUPPORT FOR THE LTTE IS NOT GOING TO 
DISAPPEAR SOON.  THERE DOES NOT APPEAR TO 
HAVE BEEN ANY SIGNIFICANT MOVEMENT OF POPULAR 
SYMPATHY FROM THE LTTE TO THE THREE GROUPS 
INDIAHAS TRIED TO INSTALL AS AN ALTERNATIVE. 
AND EFFORTS TO IMPOSE A "MILITARY SOLUTION", 
WHICH INEVITABLY RESULT IN CIVILIAN DEATH, 
HAVE IN THE PAST TENDED TO HARDEN ATTITUDES 
AND BROADEN THE TIGERS' POPULAR BASE. 
 
22.  MANY BELIEVE THAT THE LTTE IS ENCOURAGING 
EROS' EFFORTS AT MEDIATION, AND SEE IN THIS 
INDICATIONS THAT THE TIGER LEADERSHIP HAS 
DECIDED ON THE NEED FOR A CHANGE OF TACK. 
THEY BELIEVE, WITH EROS' BALAKUMAR, THAT THE LTTE 
"IS LOOKING FOR A WAY TO SAVE FACE" AND MODERATE 
ITS STANCE.  THERE IS NO GREAT OPTIMISM 
ON THE PART OF TAMILS IN THE NORTH AND EAST 
THAT THIS APPROACH WILL WORK.  BUT FEW SEE 
WHY IT SHOULD NOT BE TRIED.  END COMMENT. 
 
 
SPAIN 

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