Piyaseeli’s four decades in Kilinochchi

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Piyaseeli at work

By Arthur Wamanan in Kilinochchi

Her smile widens as she hears the familiar language – Sinhala. “You know Sinhala?” she asks.
Piyaseeli, a domestic aide, has been living in Tharmapuram, 20 kilometers east of Kilinochchi, a shade over four decades. She has seen, experienced and shared the harrowing experiences of 30 years of war with thousands of people in the area popularly known as the Wanni.
Having lived in a predominantly Tamil area, it was not often that she came across people speaking the language spoken in the rest of the country. Originally from Matara, Piyaseeli moved to Kilinochchi with her husband in 1972 and has been living there since. For Piyaseeli, life brought many uncertainties after moving to the Wanni. Little did she know that the Wanni would soon be a war zone, in years to come. “We came here seeking a quiet peaceful life,” she says. Continue reading →