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Othiyamalai massacre of 32 Tamils by Sri Lankan military remembered

 

Residents in Othiyamalai on Friday remembered the massacre of 32 Tamils by the Sri Lankan military in 1984. Lighting lamps, families who had lost their loved ones came together to remember. 

 

Sithambarapillai Sagunthararasa, then a five-year-old boy, who lost his father and five uncles during the massacre, gave the following account:
 

"My father was listening to the radio. It was only when they caught him that we realized they were the SLA. They caught our uncle at our house. They tore up his shirt in front of us and tied his hands.

Like this, the SLA went in twos and threes to every house and caught each family head. On Pathikudippu Road, they saw a tractor. They took hold of the tractor and put everyone they had brought on this tractor.

They tied up every ones hands and eyes. They shot everyone whilst the men remained still tied. The watching villagers told us, that they put five people, all of them over fifty years old in the back of a tractor.

They took off the side doors of the tractor, placed them on top of the five old men and the soldiers then stood on top of the men singing and dancing as they drove away.”