Colombo set on war path say Tamil parties

[TamilNet, Sunday, 22 April 2001, 15:52 GMT]
Tamil party leaders Sunday strongly condemned statements made by Sri Lanka’s Prime Minister Ratnasiri Wickremanayaka, that the war against the Liberation Tigers has begun and that his government will not declare a ceasefire again. “ The Prime minister’s pronouncement on Friday makes it amply clear that the Sri Lankan government is not interested in peace negotiations at all. The PM is a confidante of the President. His renewed belligerence shows that the government is on the war path again”, charged a spokesman for the alliance of ten Tamil parties.

The Sri Lankan Prime Minister made the hard hitting speech in Panadura, a large town south of Colombo city, on Friday, saying that there no room for a ceasefire again and that the military drive against the Liberation Tigers would continue relentlessly. He also said that the Tigers have to enter peace negotiations unconditionally.

“The PM has declared that war is the only solution to the ethnic problem at a time when the Liberation Tigers have reiterated their commitment to peace by unconditionally observing for four months the ceasefire they declared unilaterally as a goodwill measure to create a suitable climate for the peace process to begin. This proves once again that the government cannot be trusted”, said Mr. Joseph Pararajasingham, Tamil United Liberation Front MP for Batticaloa.

“Why should the PM who was silent all these days make the statement at this particular juncture? It clearly indicates that the government is only interested in war. I therefore urge the government not to dupe the Tamil people, the international community and the Norwegian government but to take a clear and constructive stand on the peace process”, the MP added.

“The PM’s attitude shows that the government is preparing to destroy the north and east again under the pretext of war”, said Suresh Premachndran, the leader of the Eelam People’s Revolutionary Liberation Front (EPRLF).

Mr. Selvam Adaikalanathan MP for Vanni and the leader of the Tamil Eelam Liberation Organisation said that it was obvious that the government has no genuine interest in starting peace talks when tried to fool the world by saying that it was easing the economic embargo on the Vanni and by falsely claiming that it was releasing LTTE prisoners.

“That the government was more keen on preparing for full scale war in the north and east was quite evident even before the PM made the statement in Panadura”, the TELO leader said.

 

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