Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse declared Saturday that he would not be inhuman as to try the children forcibly recruited by former Tamil Tiger rebels in court.
"We have no heart to send them before court. They are children of just 13 and 14 years of age. They will be re-integrated into the society," President Rajapakse told a ceremony to pay tribute to soldiers at Mahiyangana, a central town in Sri Lanka.
Rajapakse said that similarly those over 60 years among the Tamil civilians who are now housed in government welfare camps have already been released.
"Among them were even top terrorists," Rajapakse stressed.
He said his government's target to resettle the displaced civilians within 180 days was progressing well.
About 300,000 Tamil civilians displaced by the final battles between the government troops and Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) rebels are being housed in several relief villages in the northern Vavuniya and Jaffna districts, waiting to be resettled to their original homes.
After nearly 30 years' struggle for a separate homeland for the minority Tamils in the north and east, the LTTE came to be wiped off in May as a result of a sustained military crackdown on them by the government troops.
(Xinhua News Agency July 19, 2009)