COLOMBO, SinhalaNet 2006.05.16 02:37PM] A petition blaming the BBC for hampering Sri Lanka's peace attempt was handed over to the BBC officials at Bush House yesterday by the Sri Lankans Against Terrorism (SLAT).
The Sri Lankans against Terrorism launched a massive protest against the false pro-LTTE propaganda of the BBC world service and Sandeshaya near the BBC Bush House London on May 15 prior to the handing over of the petition.
The protest is mainly due to the false propaganda provided by the BBC service to the LTTE claiming them to be rebels fighting for a homeland.
Accusations had been repeatedly made against the BBC's coverage of the Sri Lankan peace process and their attempts to undermine the LTTE death campaign against the Sri Lankan military and innocent civilians while exaggerating reports on Army retaliation of LTTE terrorists.
The BBC continues to call the LTTE rebels despite the fact that they had been banned as a terrorist outfit in UK as well as in USA and the EU countries considering a ban on them. It was also the BBC, which raised false alarm that the Sri Lankan Army is targeting Tamil civilians in an attempt to pressurise international community to pressure Sri Lankan government to stop air attacks on Sampur.
BBC erroneously reported the mass evacuation of 40,000 people from Sampur during the Air raids although Census and Statistics Department had reported only 16,000 populations Sampur even during the times of peace.
Nicki Clarke, Executive Editor of the Asia Pacific Region and Priyath Liyanage, Head of Sinhala Service of the BBC World Service were handed over the petition on Monday.
The protestors accused BBC Sandeshaya of badly influencing the whole of the BBC on Sri Lanka's conflict.
"Viewed internationally as an icon for the dissemination of the truth about various countries and their affairs, it (BBC) has been less than impartial or straightforward or factual in its reports about Sri Lanka," a statement by the SLAT said.