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Illegal sand miners reportedly arrested in Mullaitivu

Sri Lankan police have arrested two illegal sand miners with tractors in Mullaitivu on Monday. 

The police reportedly caught the men in Kaiveli engaged in illegal sand smuggling activities based on a tip.

Police are conducting further investigations and are taking steps to present the suspects before the Mullaitivu court.

Sand smuggling has been a long-standing issue across the North-East, causing serious environmental damage across the region. The issue has also been a strong source of tension between Tamils and the Sri Lankan security forces as unarmed Tamil men have died in 2010, 2017 and 2020 during confrontations with reportedly to do with sand smuggling.

Tamil civil societiy organisations have expressed concern that state forces have used the issue as a guise to target and surveillance communities, while taking bribes to protect actual perpetrators.

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