With regard to With regard to stamps originating in France, bearing various symbols representing the LTTE, La Poste said these stamps are not in any way a part of the official French philatelic programme and no other stamp will be undertaken by their services “with these visuals and for this association.
La Poste, the issuing authority for official stamp in France has accepted that a collection of “stamps with inappropriate visuals” associated with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, an association classified by the EEC as a terrorist group, had been printed “by mistake”.
La Poste has apologized for this error on behalf of Phil@poste, the entity engaged in the overall administration of the online service, the Sri Lankan Embassy in France said.
The Embassy said it has been in communication with La Poste with regard to the matter of stamps bearing the symbols of an organization which was responsible for many atrocities that are well known by the world community.
The Embassy informs that it has received a communication from La Poste informing us that one of their services includes the possibility for the public to create customized or personalized stamps with the option of choosing and uploading freely the image they expect to see. This facility is administered by 3 designated agents who receive over 2000 requests per week. These agents are required to put in place the necessary means for the verification of the images sent to their service by the clients/customers.
The Embassy of Sri Lanka has initiated a process of further representations to the relevant authorities at the highest level about these stamps, which prima facie violate the terms and conditions that have to be met in order to be produced, one of which is that no weapon of any sort should be reproduced. This Embassy also intends to make the case that the systems and controls in place to prevent further occurrences of this sort should be adequate and be sufficiently monitored.
LTTE is a listed terrorist organization by the EU since 2006.
Meanwhile, the Embassy of France in Sri Lanka also said that no such stamp is a part of the official philatelist programme of France, neither on sale in the French post offices.