Military solution within the next year — Ratwatte
[TamilNet, Wednesday, 16 September 1998, 20:00 GMT]
"Our president began to talk to the LTTE with an open mind in 1995, to bring about peace and unity in this country, but the talks collapsed when they suddenly attacked ships in Trincomalee harbour, and now, the government is determined to build peace after wiping out terrorism", said Mr. Anuruddhe Ratwatte, the deputy minister for defence.
He was speaking at SLFP's Kandy district summit held in Bohambare grounds on September the 12.
He went on to say, "I am speaking before you after a long time, due to the difficult situation in the country, it is all your duty to ensure that our country does not breakdown into two". "When we came to power, the north was in LTTE hands, but now the situation has changed".
The war we began against the LTTE on October 17 1995, has reached a crucial stage, and it is at this stage, the opposition leader Mr. Ranil Wickramasinghe is asking us to talk to the LTTE". "Is this what we were fighting for, during the past years?". "In today's situation, we can not solve the problem without eliminating the Tigers", he said.
Furthermore, he accused the UNP politician, Mr. Jalath Jayewardane, who visited vanni for the Madu religious festivals, of talking to the LTTE's Thamilchelvan and Sutha and conspiring against the government.
He also asked the audience to remain patient until the government finished the war, which, in his terms would be soon. He also assured that it was the LTTE's final hour.
He said that the government conducted war only during three years of its term and would solve the problems within the next year.
08.09.98 UNP conspiring with the LTTE - President
06.09.98 Conditions for peace talks