Tigers await Colombo outcome, vow to observe truce
[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 January 2004, 00:07 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers have given a solemn pledge to the Norwegian facilitators of the peace process in Sri Lanka that their organization would abide by the terms and conditions of the two year old cease-fire agreement and maintain peace, irrespective of the continuing turmoil in Colombo.
The assurance was given by the LTTE's theoretician and chief negotiator, Mr. Anton Balasingham, when he met Wednesday with a Norwegian delegation led by Oslo's Special Envoy to Sri Lanka, Mr. Erik Solheim, sources told TamilNet.
A similar pledge was given by Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan, head of the LTTE’s Political Wing, when he met Norway’s ambassador to Sri Lanka, Mr. Hans Brattskar, in Kilinochchi, also on Wednesday.
Mr. Solheim, along with Mr. Erik Giercksky, a senior executive officer of Norway's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and another Norwegian official met Mr. Balasingham at his London residence, sources said.
They discussed the constitutional crisis in Colombo and the possibility of resuming talks during their three hour meeting, the sources said.
Mr. Balasingham emphasized to the Norwegian diplomats that the LTTE was prepared to participate in negotiations when a stable government assumed power in Colombo.
"We are prepared to enter into negotiations with the a government that has a mandate for peace from the Sinhala masses and also has the necessary legislative and executive authority to implement decisions," Mr. Balasingham said.
"We do not want to interfere in the current constitutional crisis between the President and the Prime Minister. We are prepared to wait until the dispute is resolved by the Sinhala leadership," he said further.
"Until such time we will strictly observe the terms and conditions of the cease-fire agreement and will maintain peace," he added.