Sampoor Navy Camp relocation
Relocation will allow civilian
Navy camp to be built with all facilities
in an adjoining land
The resettlement of the displaced in the Sampoor
region will continue. A total of 1272 families in five Gramaniladari areas
were displaced from the Sampoor area. The state
will take necessary measures to resettle them in their original
areas and provide them initial livelihood assistance as well.
The navy camp in Sampoor will be relocated to an
adjoining land where it will be permanently established with state
of the art facilities. This was revealed by Eastern Province
Governor Austin Fernando during a press briefing held at the
Information Department on Thursday (07th May 2015).
categorically denied allegations that the relocation of the navy
camp was politically motivated or done under duress by external
forces. The decision to relocate the navy camp was taken
after consultation with all stake
holders including the Secretary to
the Ministry of Defence and the Navy Commander.
The new location was
selected to ensure the safety of the naval base and the Trincomalee
harbor. The camp will be relocated to an 180 acre land which will
have a 4km long stretch of beach front. Even though the former land
was larger (237 acres) it had only about 1.5km of beach front. The
new location would be much conducive for training and security
The navy camp, SLNS Vidura will be shifted to
resettle the IDP families who were displaced due to terrorist
activity. About 579 families will be resettled in their original
land vacated by the navy. Their ownership of the land has been
verified through legal documents such as the elections registry,
householders list and Gramaniladary data, the Governor said.
With the end of the terrorist conflict the
government embarked on a resettlement programme to resettle all
displaced families. During the post war reconciliation programme it
was pledged to resettle all IDP's in their original places by the
Government. Up to now most of the displaced families of Sampoor are
living in temporary locations under deplorable conditions. Many of
the families had been displaced more than once.
Sampoor is situated about 30 km South-East of
Trincomalee on the South-Eastern side of the Trincomalee Harbour.
Due to its strategic location Sampoor was used as a launching pad by
the terrorist to attack the naval base and craft in the Trincomalee
harbor and generally destabilize the region. LTTE terrorists
launched many attacks on naval crafts and the Trincomalee base from
this area. In order to deny the advantage of this strategic location
a naval camp was established in November 2007 which was later
commissioned as SLNS Vidura in August 2013. Its proximity to the
Trincomalee naval base and the Eastern seaboard proved ideal for
further securing the region against any destabilising activity by
terrorists. The camp was used as a recruit training centre. The
trainees and the staff were housed in some buildings of an abandoned
school and temporary pre-fabricated huts. With the end of the
humanitarian operations the LTTE terrorists were defeated and peace
returned. Thus the Government was able to commence its resettlement programme.
The new naval training camp will be established
with all modern state of the art facilities in the new location with
funds from the Government. The Governor stressed that the camp is
being shifted literally just across the fence and will not
jeopardize security as some critics say.
Presidential Secretary, Secretary to the Ministry
of Defence, Chief of Defence Staff, Commanders of Army and Air
Force, Director General Operation of the Navy and senior government
officials were present during the press briefing.