LTTE offers cease-fire for safe withdrawal

[TamilNet, Monday, 08 May 2000, 09:35 GMT]
The Liberation Tigers said Monday that they are prepared to declare a temporary cease-fire to allow the Sri Lanka Army troops in the northern Jaffna peninsula to withdraw safely. In a statement from its London offices, the LTTE said its offer was "gesture of goodwill" to prevent further bloodshed and "to create a congenial environment" for the SLA "to withdraw from the unfavourable theatre of war with dignity and honour".

The full text of the press release follows:

"The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) wishes to state that it is prepared to declare a temporary cease-fire suspending all armed hostilities against the Sri Lankan armed forces to facilitate the beleaguered government troops to be evacuated safely from the Jaffna peninsula.

"Our proposed cessation of hostilities will come into effect as soon as the Sri Lanka government indicates to us, without delay, its willingness to observe the same. We call upon the International Committee of the Red Cross to supervise and assist the orderly evacuation of troops.

"The leadership of the Liberation Tigers has made this decision as a gesture of goodwill to prevent further escalation of violence and bloodbath and to create a congenial environment for Sri Lankan soldiers to withdraw from the unfavourable theatre of war with dignity and honour.

"We call upon the government of Sri Lanka to consider our proposal seriously and respond positively without delay. A positive response, we are confident, will create cordial conditions for a permanent cease-fire, peace talks and negotiated political settlement for the Tamil national question. We also wish to indicate to the Sri Lanka government that it will bear total responsibility for the disastrous consequences of heavy military casualties if it rejects our proposal for de-escalation and continues the war effort."

 

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