Government rules out talks with banned diaspora 

By Easwaran Rutnam 

The Government has ruled out talks with banned Tamil diaspora groups but will instead look at engaging with others. 

President Gotabaya Rajapaksa had told UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres during his recent visit to the UN that internal issues of Sri Lanka should be resolved through an internal mechanism of the country and that the Tamil Diaspora would be invited for discussions in this regard.

However, in an interview with Daily Mirror, Foreign Minister, Professor G.L Peiris, insisted that there will not be any direct talks with banned diaspora groups like the Global Tamil Forum.

The Global Tamil Forum (GTF), British Tamil Forum (BTF), Canadian Tamil Congress (CTC), Australian Tamil Congress (ATC), National Council of Canadian Tamil, Tamil Youth Organisation and the World Tamil Coordinating Committee are among those proscribed by the Ministry of Defence.

“We can’t speak to organisations that have been banned by the Sri Lankan government. That is not possible because that would be a violation of our law. But there are other shades of opinion. So, it’s useful to engage with them,” he said.

The Minister said the government is having discussions with several groups and individuals as part of the reconciliation process.

“It is always good to get feedback and we are now having extensive discussions with people right across the spectrum. And I think that is enriching the processes of reconciliation that we have embarked upon,” he said.

Professor G.L Peiris said that President Gotabaya Rajapaksa will meet the Tamil National Alliance on his return from COP26, which he will attend at the invitation of the British Prime Minister.

“So be it the NGO community or the foreign diaspora or the parliamentary opposition in Sri Lanka. We want to engage with all of them and that is very much the way forward,” the Foreign Minister said.

 

3 COMMENTS

  1. Don’t get upset with Tamil diaspora but focus on the western driving forces which divide and conquer others. If you don’t talk to particular groups, the West will continue to use them to achieve western interests. I met few pro LTTE Tamils in Australia. The majority of them see the truth after I explained to them that the West hijacked the LTTE from India to achieve western interests. Then only the civil war became so brutal and thousands had died. Some of them will not change, but the majority will see the truth if you create an environment for them to listen. If I can make a difference, surely the government can. The government should not expect anything but continue to talk them. Eventually, things will change.

  2. 70% of GDP is spent repaying Chinese loans. A debt burden so great that it may trigger a sovereign debt default for the first time in Sri Lanka’s history. The sole purpose of these loans is to ensure a pliable government through a debt trap.

    Sri Lankan politicians motivated purely by personal enrichment have little consideration for the consequences of this gross financial mismanagement.

    But at least, Professor Peris is a class above the loin cloth clad Dinesh Gunawardena.

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