COLOMBO, Feb 26 Sri Lankan police on Thursday arrested a leading Tamil journalist, Nadesapillai Vithyatharan, who edited `Sudar Oli` and `Uthayan`, the former published from Colombo and the latter from Jaffna in the north.
Sources said the police could be investigating his possible links with the banned Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE).
Police spokesman Ranjith Gunasekara gave no reasons for the detention, but the cabinet spokesman Anura PriyadarshanaYapa told reporters that Vithyatharan was arrested because “there were some issues”.
The pro-LTTE Tamilnet website said that prior to his arrest from the Mahinda Florists` funeral parlour in Mount Lavinia, south of Colombo, Vithyatharan had been grilled for six hours on last Sunday by the Terrorist Investigation Department.
The website said the questioning was on some reports on the killing of civilians by the Sri Lankan armed forces in the war zone, which had appeared in the publications edited by him.
He was also questioned on his links with top functionaries of the LTTE in the past. Sources said Vithyatharan had also been used by the Sri Lankan establishment, to pass messages to the LTTE at a time when the government was toying with the idea of negotiating with theTigers.