The Graveyards of Sri Lanka's War Zone

Expansion of a gravesite in Sri Lankan “Civilian Safe Zone”: On April 19 (left) roads are present, but the area is mostly deserted. By May 24 (right), a large graveyard with an estimated 342 graves has emerged. Analysis provided by AAAS.

Expansion of a gravesite in Sri Lankan “Civilian Safe Zone”: On April 19 (left) roads are present, but the area is mostly deserted. By May 24 (right), a large graveyard with an estimated 342 graves has emerged. Analysis provided by AAAS.

A final analysis of satellite images – requested by Amnesty International USA’s Science for Human Rights project – was released by the American Association for the Advancement of Science today. It provides rare evidence of a conflict zone still inaccessible to independent observers. In addition to evidence of impact craters in close proximity to Internally-Displaced Person (IDP) shelters, the final analysis reveals two new alarming features: The new analysis shows large gravesites and evidence of mortars used in and around the so-called civilian save zone, which raises further questions about the military tactics deployed by the Sri Lankan Army and the use of human shields by the Tamil Tigers. The fact that we are forced to rely on satellite technology to collect information about the conduct of hostilities is a pressing reminder of the urgent need for an independent investigation with unimpeded access to the area. The Sri Lankan government has severely restricted access to areas where grave human rights violation may have occurred.

Graveyards
The analysis identified three different graveyards, counting a total of 1,346 likely graves. The satellite images can neither reveal if these graves contain civilians or Tamil Tiger fighters, nor reveal in themselves much about the scope of civilian suffering as a result of targeted or indiscriminate attacks. This uncertainty, together with the highly disputed civilian casualty figures, requires an independent investigation with full and unfettered access to the former war zone and IDP camps. Additionally, the UN must immediately disclose its reports about civilian casualty figures, which – according to media reports – are as high as 20,000.

Probable mortar positions
The identification of potential Sri Lankan Army mortar positions in the proximity of the so-called Civilian Safe Zone (CSZ) are an alarming piece of evidence. Mortars are indirect fire weapons. When used against the Tamil Tigers who set up its defensive positions among tens of thousands IDPS – as confirmed by aerial photographs obtained and analyzed by AIUSA’s Science for Human Rights project – the use of such weapons in that context may constitute a serious breach of international humanitarian law. The satellite images reveal several possible mortar craters in close proximity to IDP shelters.

Numerous possible mortar emplacements are located throughout the area of the CSZ. One such emplacement (left), is arrayed similarly to the ‘Lazy W’ formation detailed in a US Army Field Manual (right; FM 7-90 Tactical Employment of Mortars). Analysis provided by AAAS

Numerous possible mortar emplacements are located throughout the area of the CSZ. One such emplacement (left), is arrayed similarly to the ‘Lazy W’ formation detailed in a US Army Field Manual (right; FM 7-90 Tactical Employment of Mortars). Analysis provided by AAAS

An estimated 17 possible mortar positions were identified on May 10 in the area surrounding the CSZ. One location is arranged in a “Six Star” formation while the other can be categorized as a “Lazy W” by a US Army Field Manual. Most of the sites are simply in a parallel or single line formation, and are oriented both towards the CSZ and surrounding roads. Conclusive evidence is still lacking, as no mortar tubes are visible in the image. There is no indication of heavy artillery pieces, which are generally discernable in imagery unless camouflaged. It has to be noted that the Sri Lankan Army uses various artillery pieces that range beyond the area of analysis (approximately nine kilometers around the CSZ). Although the imagery cannot be fully conclusive, the mortar positions are persuasive enough to require further investigations with full access to the former conflict and civilian zones.

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27 thoughts on “The Graveyards of Sri Lanka's War Zone

  1. Pingback: Satellite images show Sri Lanka graves « UKTamilNews.com

  2. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who's brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed "the matter is too sensitive", this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely "conflict of interest", considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the "UN figure" for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite's images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be "few dozens". One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define "few dozens"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it's genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  3. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who's brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed "the matter is too sensitive", this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely "conflict of interest", considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the "UN figure" for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite's images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be "few dozens". One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define "few dozens"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it's genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  4. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who's brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed "the matter is too sensitive", this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely "conflict of interest", considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the "UN figure" for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite's images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be "few dozens". One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define "few dozens"
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it's genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  5. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who’s brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed “the matter is too sensitive”, this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely “conflict of interest”, considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the “UN figure” for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite’s images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be “few dozens”. One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define “few dozens”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it’s genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  6. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who’s brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed “the matter is too sensitive”, this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely “conflict of interest”, considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the “UN figure” for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite’s images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be “few dozens”. One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define “few dozens”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it’s genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  7. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who’s brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed “the matter is too sensitive”, this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely “conflict of interest”, considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the “UN figure” for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite’s images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be “few dozens”. One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define “few dozens”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it’s genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  8. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who’s brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed “the matter is too sensitive”, this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely “conflict of interest”, considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the “UN figure” for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite’s images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be “few dozens”. One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define “few dozens”
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it’s genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.

  9. George, I will advice you to listen to Matthew Lee, who had been drilling UN officials on Sri-Lanka:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    Yes, definitely these three can be charged for the complicity in the War Crimes, for playing down the genocide.

    Vijay Nambiar:
    Vijay Nambiar, who’s brother is Satish Nambiar is a paid consultant to Sri-Lankan defense ministry. Vijay Nambiar was chosen by Ban-Ki Moon and sent to Sri-Lanka for fact-finding mission. While returning from Sri-Lanka, he made a short visit to India and met Indian officials. At the UN Vijay Nambiar refused to brief on Sri-Lanka, since he claimed “the matter is too sensitive”, this is when several NGOs claimed casualties surpassed 7,000 within 2 months, and evidences of using chemical weapons against the civlians. Vijay Nambiar should not have been chosen to send to Sri-Lanka since it is definitely “conflict of interest”, considering the role his brother was playing for Sri-Lanka.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UiD_b2KJttI

    John Holmes:
    Constantly played down the causalities of the civilians, refused to disclose the “UN figure” for the civilians casualties, despite of several satellite’s images where shown of mass graves. Even after the casualties surpassed 10,000, John Holmes kept claiming the causalities to be “few dozens”. One reporter question the credibility of John Holmes, by asking him to define “few dozens”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9b8p4MKEaFo

    UN, and the International Community, kept insisting the civilians to move to the government camps, which is surrounded by barbed wires, with NO media or aid access. There is where, now the abuses are happening:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ry6y0c_GcSU

    The elephant in the room:
    India and China played major role in the carnage of Sri-Lanka. India, China & Russia were the major powers in the UN who lobbied for Sri-Lanka to continue it’s genocidal war against the Tamils, for their own geopolitical interest.