Norwegian ambassador meets civil leaders in Jaffna
[TamilNet, Friday, 22 August 2003, 11:51 GMT]
Norwegian ambassador in Colombo Mr Hans Brattskar paid his first official
visit to Jaffna district Friday and held discussions with the Government
Agent, members of Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) and representatives of
non-governmental organizations in the peninsula, district secretariat
Mr. Brattskar arrived in Palaly military air base by special aircraft
accompanied by his first secretary Mr.Thomas Strangeland Friday morning.
The military officials received him and thereafter he proceeded to Jaffna
district secretariat where he held a one to one discussion with
Mr.S.Pathmanathan, Government Agent. No government officials and media
persons were allowed to participate in the discussion, district secretariat
Later Mr. Brattskar addressed Jaffna journalists about his visit held
at the district secretariat premises, sources said.
"This is my first visit to Jaffna district after assuming office as the
envoy of my country. I have seen the devastation of the war on my way to
Jaffna town from Palaly," said Mr. Brattskar.
"The aim of my Jaffna visit is to see the situation in Jaffna district and
to make necessary preliminary arrangements for the proposed visit of NORAD
Director to Jaffna next month," said Mr. Brattskar.
"The Government of Norway will not contribute in anyway in the consultation
now being held by the LTTE leaders with their constitutional experts at
Paris on the interim administrative structure proposals submitted by the
Government of Sri Lanka. However our special peace envoy Mr. Erik Solheim
will participate at the end of the consultation to provide necessary
technical advice to the LTTE leadership. The advice provided by Mr. Erik
Solheim would certainly help to take forward the peace process," said
Norwegian ambassador Mr. Hans Brattskar, sources said.
The Government of Norway is contributing to the development of
Sri Lanka for more than twenty-five years and it will continue its
contribution, said Mr. Brattskar.
All parties concerned are determined to continue the present peace process
but it is not an easy task to achieve peace. We cannot expect peace very
soon, replied Mr. Brattskar in reply to a question at the press briefing,
Thereafter Mr. Brattskar held discussions with the members of the SLMM in
Jaffna at the SLMM office which is located along Temple Road.
Later he met
the representatives of the Jaffna District NGOs Consortium. The discussion
continued for about an hour. Consortium President Mr.V.Thiayagarajah,
Secretary Ms. Ponmalar Rajeswaran and several others participated. Media
persons were not allowed to cover the discussion with NGOs representatives,