Britain was giving military training to Sri Lankan Armed Forces since the 1980s British SAS officers were the founders and trainers of Sri Lanka’s special ops unit, STF, and LRRP. They were exporting high tech military equipment and weapons to Sri Lanka until 2009 In 2001, Britain added LTTE to its list of terrorist organizations.
They never gave a valid reason for doing so and prevented 300,000 Tamils in the UK from donating to the LTTE, which crippled the LTTE’s budget during Eelam war 4 At that time, the LTTE wasn’t even declared a terrorist organization in Sri Lanka Strange that the LTTE was banned even when Prabhakaran was repeatedly trying to bring the abhorrent Sri Lankan government to the negotiation table and it was long before the 9/11 attacks
After the successful LTTE commando assault on Bandaranaike International Airport, the damages cost the GOSL $358US million and drastically ruined the countries image to tourists Britain was Sri Lanka’s largest financial aid after the assault
The UK, alongside the US and India, pressured the EU to ban the LTTE Maj. Gen Ulf Henricsson, Swedish Military officer who was head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission slammed Britain and the US for disturbing the peace process and giving pressure to other countries to ban the LTTE
In 2008 alone, the British Government approved the sale of £4 million of military equipment, including sonar detection components and military communication equipment, and £3million in small arms In total, the Government approved the sale of 600 assault rifles, 650 rifles, 100 pistols, and 50 combat shotguns to the Sri Lankan army.