President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga in a letter Thursday has instructed Minister of Interior John Amaratunga to ascertain and inquire into the controversial Athurugiriya incident.
“The police raided a legitimate unit of the army’s elite forces - a safe house at Athurugiriya on January 2, which resulted in a serious breach in national security,” Presidential spokesman Harim Peiris told the media on Thursday.
Peiris said that President Kumaratunga had decided to order a special probe after the Interior Minister, who is responsible for the Police Department had failed to conduct a proper investigation into the incident.
“Subsequent events put in jeopardy the lives of the members of the deep penetration unit responsible for a series of successful operations behind the LTTE lines in the north-east,” he said.
Soon after the incident it was reported in the media as a conspiracy to assassinate Prime Minister Ranil Wickremasinghe.
Speaking of the President’s support to the on-going peace process, Pieris said that the President is ‘totally committed to’ and ‘cautiously optimistic’ about it.
He also said that it was a misconception that the President and the PA campaigned against peace before the last election but that they were only against the ‘secrecy and the unusual nature’ of the process between the UNP and the LTTE.
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