Nov 14, 2019

Tri Forces confined to barracks during presidential election Featured

The Tri Forces will be removed from security duties and confined to barracks and kept on alert from tomorrow (15), it is reported.

This decision is said to have been taken due to protests by the European Union election monitoring team.

Accordingly, the Tri Forces would be removed from road blocks and other street patrols from 6.00 am tomorrow until the ballot boxes are taken to the counting centres.

However, the Defence Ministry is said to have issued an order yesterday (13) to confine tri forces troops to barracks.

This decision has been taken after discussions were held between the Defence Secretary Shantha Kottegoda, Tri Forces Commanders, CDS and IG.

Therefore, the tri forces troops would be confined to barracks from 6.00am tomorrow until after 5.00 pm on Saturday (16).

However, in the event the police requests for the assistance of the military troops, they would be deployed.

The Security Council had taken a decision to deploy the tri forces to strengthen the country’s security after Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith had notified President Sirisena in a letter regarding a danger of another attack similar to the Easter Sunday attack.

Accordingly, road blocks were set up and tri forces personnel were deployed to provide security at schools.

In addition road blocks and street patrols were increased in the North and East to curb drug trafficking.

The Aruna Newspaper had reported that around 300 foreign observers had arrived in the country for election monitoring and they had travelled throughout the country and had notified their countries in writing against the deployment of Tri forces for security duties.

It states that they had paid special attention on the tri forces road blocks and street patrols particularly in the North and East.

It is stated that a senior security official had stated that these security measures had been deployed over the past two months and as most of these foreign observers are in the country for the first time and this situation had arisen because the Election Commission had failed to brief these foreign observers regarding the country’s security measures.  

However, he said that only the police would be deployed during the election period and once the election is completed, the tri forces would be re-deployed for security.