Tamil people preparing for war: Sri Lankan rebel commander

May 25, 2006 (AFP) – The Tamil people are preparing for war and nobody can defeat them, a top Sri Lankan rebel military commander was quoted as saying Thursday. Colonel Jeyam, of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), was quoted by the pro-rebel Tamilnet.com website at a memorial ceremony for another senior rebel commander who was gunned down on the weekend.

The Tamil Tigers blamed government forces for the killing of Colonel Ramanan, deputy commander for eastern Batticaloa district.

Government military officials denied security forces were involved and said they suspected a breakaway rebel faction may have been responsible.

The rebels have said Ramanan’s killing was intended to drag the Tigers into “major war”, further raising tension on the island where mounting violence is undermining a four-year-old ceasefire.

“I can see the people of Tamil Eelam getting ready for the war. We know where we should stand — on the power of our people’s support, the guidance of our leader, on the sacrifices we have made for freedom in our own territory,” said Jeyam, identified as a top LTTE commander.

“Nobody can defeat us now when the Tamil people hav