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Wednesday, 18 March 1987
Page: 1033

To the Honourable the Speaker and Members of the House of Representatives in Parliament assembled.

The humble petitioners of the undersigned electors of Australia respectfully showeth that:

The conflict in Sri Lanka arising out of the attempt by small groups of people in that country to partition it on racial lines through the exercise of terrorist violence, has several aspects which are vital to the interests of Australia, to wit

(a) international terrorism has been introduced into a region of concern to Australia leading to its destabilisation;

(b) the smuggling of narcotics has been one of the principal ways of financing the terrorist operation, and Western countries have been the major victims of this traffic in narcotics;

(c) several terrorist groups are self-proclaimed pro-Soviet Marxists, and in the eventuality of their success they could introduce a Soviet military presence into the parts of Sri Lanka which they hope to control, which includes Trincomalee, a prime site for a naval base that could control much of the Indian Ocean;

(d) terrorist agents and economic adventurers are smuggled into Western countries in the guise of ``refugees'' in an attempt to circumvent immigration rules in force in these countries;

(e) the international press has reported that Sri Lankan terrorists are supplied with funds and arms from their supporters in Western countries including Australia; and

(f) Indian support for Sri Lankan terrorism through the provision of bases, weapons, training and even diplomatic support, has made that country, which is close to Australia, a sanctuary for international terrorism.

Your petitioners humbly pray that the House of Representatives, in Parliament assembled, urge the Australian Government to take into consideration the above facts in the formulation of its policy on the Sri Lankan question.

And your petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray.

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