Thank you for publishing the article on Sri Lanka (Feb. 10). The statement made by the Sri Lankan government's aide about "leftist Tamils" did not surprise me at all. I am sure the government aide is putting it this way in order to gain continued arms support from the U.S. government.
But in truth, his accusations are not entirely accurate. Because on Jan. 6, 1985, at 1 a.m. at St. Anne's Rectory Vankalai, a Catholic priest, the Rev. Mary Bastian Manuelpillai, was shot and killed by the Sri Lankan government's security forces. Along with him two of my relatives were also shot and killed by the same group! One was Michael Nathan Croos (age 21) who was preparing to enter a Catholic seminary, and the other was Thangachiammal (age 72), who was my aunt.
I presume your readers would know that there is a definite move to make Sri Lanka a sacred state for Buddha. This is ingrained in the constitution of Sri Lanka. But must a sacred state come about by eliminating and persecuting other religions? The Sri Lankan minister of security claims that he is British-educated. And I question whether a British college education gives him the license to kill. In the magazine, Hindu (Nov. 24, 1984), the minister is quoted as saying "We are arming the people to kill people."
I want the American people to know that meanwhile Sri Lankan government security forces are killing any and all Tamils and labeling them terrorists/separatists. Can a 72-year-old woman be considered a terrorist?
ANGELITO PERIES CSsR
St. Mary's Church