Sri Lanka marks victory over Tamil Tigers

  • Updated: May 18, 2014 - 7:54 PM
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Sri Lankan army soldiers march during a Victory Day parade in Matara, about 150 kilometers (94 miles) south of Colombo, Sri Lanka, Sunday, May 18, 2014. Sri Lanka's government Sunday marked the fifth anniversary of the civil war victory over ethnic Tamil separatists by displaying its military strength, while preventing Tamil civilians from publicly remembering their dead. (AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena)

Photo: Eranga Jayawardena • Associated Press,

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Sri Lanka’s government on Sunday marked the fifth anniversary of its victory over Tamil insurgents with a military parade in the south and a broad crackdown on journalists, opposition politicians and students in the once-restive north and east. Government troops largely sealed off the offices of Uthayan, a newspaper based in the northern city of Jaffna that has long been critical of the governing alliance. The government also closed Jaffna University. In Pottuvil, in the east, troops blocked a meeting of the Tamil National Alliance, an opposition party. The measures, confirmed by a military spokesman, were part of a crackdown in Tamil-dominated areas intended to prevent open demonstrations of grief for the tens of thousands killed during the country’s 26-year civil war. In the southern town of Matara on Sunday, President Mahinda Rajapaksa viewed a military parade, above, and air show to mark Victory Day.

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