The Times carried serious allegations against Sri Lanka and posted satellite images to substantiate it's claims.
The Times also posted this article, advising people against travel to Sri Lanka or the purchase of Sri Lankan products in the international market. Note the name of the author, Jeremy Page.
This has compelled me to do my own 'investigation'.
According to Nick Paton Walsh's Facebook profile he is a friend of Jeremy Page. For those who don't recall. Nick from Channel 4 was the only journalist to have been deported from Sri Lanka. Several international journalist were present in Sri Lanka at the time of Walsh's deportation. Only Nick was sent back.
I didn't realise Nick's gripe with Sri Lanka rubbed off on his mates.
Now, The Times claims Evidence gathered by The Times has revealed that at least 20,000 Tamils were killed on the beach by shelling as the army closed in on the Tigers.
This allegation appeared moments after the Sri Lankan military announced that over 22,000 Tiger combatants had been killed and 9000 had surrendered.
The Times (UK)
Photographs taken by The Times present clear evidence of an atrocity that comes close to matching Srebrenica, Darfur and other massacres of civilians. In the sandy so-called no-fire zone where the trapped Tamil civilians were told to go to escape the brutal army bombardment, there are hundreds of fresh graves as well as craters and debris where tents once stood. This was no safe zone. This was where terrified civilians buried their dead as the shells landed - after the Government had declared an end to the use of heavy weapons on April 27.If you know the Tamil Tigers and if you have followed them closely as I have. You would know that the noble cause of a journalist is just open to exploitation by the group (LTTE). In the coming months it may come to light how the Tamil Tigers used members of the international media in their fight against Sri Lanka.
If you look at how the Sri Lankan war played out, it's clear the Tigers intended on large scale civilian casualties to save their organisation. The Tigers needed to create that impression that thousands were dying or fleeing from Army shelling.
Since September of 2008 the Tigers moved and confined more than 200,000 people around their senior leadership. As the UN and others have repeatedly pointed out, they used innocent Tamils as a human shield.
The Tigers knew that the western media would cry foul if the Sri Lankans attacked them, given the circumstances. They knew that being the terrorist served them well. Nothing they did was out of character. Everything Sri Lanka did would be scrutinised.
Photos of graves or craters don't mount to any evidence that Sri Lanka killed innocent Tamils, or that they shelled areas after reassurances that it would not.
The Tigers as shown on the video below did not always wear military apparel. They were in civilian attire and not fatigues.
The craters in the 'No Fire Zone'? The video here shows the Tigers setting off large scale explosions during the final days of the battle, in areas they still had control of within the 'No Fire Zone', or 'Safety Zone'.
The article published on The Times does not prove anything. It merely presents the Tamils with more reason to hate the Sinhalese. More reason to hate the state.
If there was substantiated evidence to prove that 20,000 Tamil civilians were killed in the 'No fire Zone', I would be the first to condemn the Sri Lankan government and call for a war crimes investigation. Thankfully though, there is more evidence pointing to the contrary.
Approximately 280,000 Tamil refugees are currently housed in refugee camps. The original figure thought to have been held by the Tigers' as a human shield was 200,000.
When common sense prevails things become much clearer.