Tamil Diaspora to publicly renounce violence and separatism
The once anti-Sri Lankan Tamil Diaspora is likely to issue a
statement renouncing violence and separatism, the Sri Lankan Foreign
Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, told parliament on Friday.
"As a result of our discussions (in London last weekend), and our
efforts, it is most likely that the Diaspora groups which were
previously hostile to Sri Lanka, would issue a declaration renouncing
violence and commit themselves to working towards a united, undivided
Sri Lanka," Samaraweera said.
Samaraweera was offering a detailed answer to the Leader of the
Opposition, Nimal Sripala de Silva, who had asked a number of questions
pertaining to the meeting with the Global Tamil Forum (GTF) and a few
Samaraweera denied that the issue of lifting the ban on the
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was discussed. He also denied
that there was any discussion on "war crimes" and the proposed domestic
mechanism to investigate charges of war crimes.
It was not a meeting which took place behind the back of the
President and Prime Minister of Sri Lanka. Both the President and the PM
had been kept fully informed, the Minister said.
However, there was discussion about de-listing those Diaspora groups
and individuals who were merely voicing the concerns of the Tamil
people. As per the notification banning these entities and individuals,
an annual review is mandatory. That review is to be done by the
Competent Authority mentioned in the notification, the Minister said.
Justifying the meeting, Samaraweera said that it was mandated by both
the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) and the Sirisena
government's declared policy of reaching out to Sri Lankans who were
alienated from their motherland by the narrow minded policies of the
previous government (led by Mahinda Rajapaksa).
The Sirisena government is building bridges which had been burnt by
the previous government, and Diaspora groups and countries which had
been alienated are now coming on board, Samaraweera said.