Mullaitivu incident no obstruction to cease-fire agreement -Minister
[TamilNet, Thursday, 21 February 2002, 12:00 GMT]
Media spokesman and a senior minister of the United National Front Government Professor G.L.Peiris told a press conference this morning that clashes between the Sri Lanka Navy and the Liberation Tigers, Thursday morning would in no way obstruct the signing of the cease-fire agreement between the government and the LTTE. Defence Ministry sources in Colombo said a Sri Lanka Navy officer was killed in the clashes that took place off the northeastern coast of Mullaithivu. The clashes erupted when navy patrol boats intercepted a flotilla of LTTE boats. Sri Lanka Air Force jets were called in to assist the navy, the sources said.
Minister Peiris further said," such violations would take place until the signing of MoU, which would pave way for a permanent cease-fire. Such instances of violation of cease-fire take place in countries where there is war."
Professor Peiris announced measures decided by the UNF cabinet held Thursday to reduce the cost of living. One of the decisions was to remove defence tax levy on flour completely with immediate effect.
Minister Peiris said with the removal of 6.5 % defence tax, the price of flour would come down by six rupees in open market, thus reducing the price of bread and flour related food items.