'Need advisors to promote peace, not war' - Wickremesinghe

[TamilNet, Saturday, 06 September 2003, 12:12 GMT]
Sri Lanka's Prime Minister Mr.Ranil Wickremasinghe appealed to his ministerial colleagues during last week's cabinet meeting that he needed persons who could advise him on how to achieve permanent peace and not to launch war again, according to Colombo media sources.

Mr.Wickremasinghe further told his ministerial colleagues that majority of the people support peace and they mandated the present government to restore peace in the island. "In these circumstances my government will not launch another war in the country to appease some defence ministry officials," stressed Mr.Wickremasinghe, media sources said.

"In the past, governments of United National Party (UNP) and Peoples Alliance (PA) conducted war in the country on the advice of defence high officials. This course has led the country and its economy to disaster.

"The governments in past failed to carry out its activities according to cabinet decisions. Instead they gave priority to decisions made by top officials of the security forces. People of the country are now suffering because of that policy. We cannot allow the people to suffer the same in future. The devastation and destruction the country and its people suffered in past is enough," Mr. Wickremasinghe had told his colleagues, sources said.

LTTE had given an assurance that they would continue the present ceasefire and would be engaged in peace talks without a deadline. This assurance has been given inspite of stalled peace talks. The security establishment is also not suspecting the bonafide of the LTTE in this regard, he said.

The government will make the policy decisions to improve welfare of the country and the responsibility of the high officials is to implement those decisions. It is the responsibility of the ministers to safeguard the security of the country. Ministers are controlled by parliament. Instead of the word "war" the word "peace" should prevail everywhere. Only peace could salvage the country from disaster, Mr.Wickremasinghe has told his colleagues, according to Colombo media sources.

Meanwhile Mr.Wickremasinghe addressing a public meeting in Moneragala, a Sinhala town in the south, Friday, warned that if the present peace process collapsed the economy of the country would be ruined.

 

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