March for Peace campaign to be held in Colombo

[TamilNet, Wednesday, 16 August 2006, 19:21 GMT]
A broad coalition of people against violence and war is to participate in a "March for Peace," organized by the National Anti-war Front (NAWF), that will begin at Hyde Park in Colombo at 2:00 p.m. Thursday, culminating in a peace rally at the Viharamahadevi open Air Theatre at 3.00 p.m, said a press release issued by the NAWF Chairman, Dr Kumar Rupesinghe.

Full text of the Press Release follows:


The government and the LTTE have returned to another phase of the war. We all are aware that war will not bring peace and it will only bring deaths and destructions. Already this war has affected the lives of thousands of Muslims, Tamils and Sinhalese and pushed them into untold hardships. People living in the south as well a north are push to the situation of war fear.

The Government and the LTTE should respect the Ceasefire Agreement and must return to the negotiation table immediately. A peace march will begin at 2.00 p.m. from the Hyde Park and will reach the Viharamahadevi Parl where a Public Peace Rally will be held at 3.00 p.m. These events have been organized to pressurize the parties to the war to return to the negotiation table in order to safeguard the lived of our people being destroyed by this war.

The following religious dignitaries, political leaders and civil society activists will address the Rally:

Religious Dignitaries:

Ven. Prof. Kumburugamuwe Vajira Thero
Ven. Kali Kanagaratnam Kurukkal
Ven Madurave Shobitha Thero
Maulavi H. Abdul Nazar
Rt. Rev. Bishop Kumar Illangasinghe

Political Leaders:

Mr. Vasudeva Nanayakkara - Democratic Left Front
Hon. Dilan Perera - Peoples Alliance
Hon. Rajitha Senaratne - United National Party
Hon. Minister A.H. M. Fowzie
Mr. Baratha Lakshman Prematilleke - Peoples Alliance
Hon. Reginold Cooray - Sri Lanka Freedom Party
Hon. Prof. Tissa Vitharana - Lanka Samasamaja Party
Hon. Mano Ganeson - Western Peoples front
Hon. Nadaraj Raviraj - Tamil National Alliance
Mr. S. B. Dissanayake - United National Party
Hon. Rauf Hakkim - Sri Lanka Muslim Congress
Hon. K. A. Baiz - Sri Lanka Muslim Congress
Dr. Vickremabahu Karunaratne - United Left Front
Mr. Rangith Navaratne - Sri Lanka Mahajana Party
Mr. M. A. Rizvi - Sri Lanka Communist Party
Mr. R. Yogarajan - Ceylon Workers Congress
Hon. P. Chandresegaram - Upcounty Peoples Front

Civil Society and Trade Union Activists:

Dr. Kumar Rupesinghe - National Anti War Front
Mr. Jehan Perera - National Peace Council
Dr. Paikiasothy Saravanamuttu - Centre for Policy Alternatives
Mr. Sunanda Deshapriya - free Media Movement
Ms. Nimalka Fernando - IMARD
Mr. Victor Ivan - Ravaya
Ms. Sunila Abeysekera - INFORM
Dr. Pushpa Ramlani - Women Activists
Ms. Jasline Punchihewa - Bintenna Women's Front
Mr. Saman Ratnapriya - Health Services Trade Union
Mr. Ravi Kumudesh - Trade union Centre for the right to nation building
Mr. K. Velautham - Lanka Jathika Estate Workers Union
Mr. Dharmasiri Bandaranayake - Trikone Arts Circle
Mr. Asoka Handagama - Film Director
Ms. Swarna Mallawarachchi - Film Actress

We will be organizing a series of similar peace marches and rallies in the district in the coming weeks. We, at the National Anti War Front (NAWF), kindly invite all peace loving citizens in the country to rally around these activities in order to bring pressure to the parties of the war in order to stop the war and to push them to return to the negotiation table.

Dr. Kumar Rupesinghe

Chairman - NAWF


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