UPFA silent on peace process, CFA - Wickremesinghe

[TamilNet, Sunday, 14 March 2004, 11:38 GMT]
"Eventhough there is a voice in the south that is calling for the abrogation of the Ceasefire Agreement and to start war, we are determined to pursue the path of peace," said Sri Lanka's Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe speaking at an election meeting held in Vavuniya Urban Council grounds Saturday.

Vavuniya campaign

Mr.Wickremesinghe was visiting Vavuniya two years after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Liberation Tigers and the Government of Sri Lanka.

Mr. Wickremesinghe said: "Political forces in the South were earlier were campaigning that LTTE will start war after signing theMoU. After consenting to opening the A9 and agreeing to explore a Federal solution I was convinced that LTTE will not try to start a war.

"For the last forty years we have been neglecting development of the northeast region. We ignored the calls for resolving pressing issues by the people of Northeast. That is why they were forced to demand separation.

"The absence of war during the last two years have clearly showed that we can build unity and peace in Sri Lanka.

Vavuniya campaign

"Political forces in the South, led by Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), are campaigning against the Ceasefire agreement and peace. We are not prepared enter into another war. Failure to find a fair and just solution has cost Sri Lanka 60,000 lives. Many young lives, Sinhala and Tamil, were lost in the fighting. I am not prepared to allow that to happen again," said Wickremesinghe.

"Election manifesto of the United Peoples Freedom Alliance (UPFA) is silent on how to achieve peace. There is no mention of the Ceasefire agreement. They have not proposed any plans as to how they are going to move Sri Lanka forward," added Wickremesinghe.

United National Front (UNF) candidates for the Vanni districts in the forthcoming elections, Shantha Panchihewa, Noordeen Mazoor, Badiudin Abdul Rizard, R.Pakiyanathan, Mahes Thavachelvam, M.J.Pathmalal, R.D.Jeyaseelan, Habib Mohamed and Zahul Hameed and other religious dignitories attended the campaign meeting.


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