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Lankan Tamils slam controversial field commander's appointment as Army chief

Press Trust of India  |  Colombo 

The Tamil minorities in Sri Lanka on Monday slammed the appointment of Lt Gen Shavendra Silva as the country's new Army chief, calling it a "serious affront".

Silva headed the Army's 58th Division in the final battle against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels in the final stages of the civil war in 2009.

"An individual who stands accused of grave crimes (appointed) as Army Commander is a serious affront to the Tamil people," Tamil National Alliance spokesman M A Sumanthiran said.

"We are deeply disappointed by this appointment," he said.

Silva, 55, will take charge as incumbent Army chief Lt Gen Mahesh Senanayake's service was not extended.

His brigade was accused of attacking civilians, hospitals and stopping humanitarian supplies to trapped Tamil civilians.

The Tamil National Alliance is a political alliance in Sri Lanka that represents the country's Sri Lankan Tamil minority.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, August 19 2019. 18:10 IST