Is it Endgame for LTTE?

M. Mayilvaganam is Associate Fellow at Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detail profile.
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  • January 2009

    The LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) struggle against the Sri Lankan Government has taken different forms at different times since early 1970s. However, developments since 2006 have had an adverse impact on the LTTE and its efforts to seek a solution through violent means. The LTTE's numerical strength has fallen and it is also not doing too well in drafting recruits and procuring arms. The territory under its control is shrinking visibly: from the loss of the East and now with the intrusion of the Sri Lankan troops deep inside Killinochchi. The global war on terrorism (GWOT) and the ascendancy of the Sri Lankan Security Forces (SLSF) have contributed for the present quagmire. Despite the support from Tamils in Sri Lanka and diaspora, the LTTE's depleting profile raises certain fundamental questions about the efficacy and its existence. While the LTTE is weakened, it is doubtful that it will be completely dislodged from the Sri Lankan scene. There is even less reason to believe that the LTTE would concur with the government conceding its armed struggle for Eelam to save its strength. The argument in this article is mainly about the importance of taking into account the LTTE's profile in the post-2006 scenario.