EU external relations commissioner to meet LTTE

[TamilNet, Thursday, 20 November 2003, 17:01 GMT]
The Commissioner of External Relations of the European Commission, Mr. Chris Patten, will visit Sri Lanka next week and meet the Liberation Tigers, President Chandrika Kumaratunga and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe, according to a press release issued by the Delegation of the European Commission to Sri Lanka Thursday.

Mr. Patten is to arrive in Colombo Tuesday morning 4.55 a.m. on the first leg of his seven day official tour of South Asia. He will be in Sri Lanka from November 25 to November 27. During his stay he will also have discussions with the leader of the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress and the head of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission, according to the release.

He will speak on ‘Conflict resolution: EU experiences’ at the Sri Lanka Institute for International Relations on Tuesday afternoon.

The press release states that Mr. Patten is scheduled to meet the leader of the Liberation Tigers, Mr. Velupillai Pirapaharan on Wednesday in Kilinochchi.

LTTE officials in Kilinochchi said they were not in a position to confirm the meeting.

He leaves Thursday morning to Chennai in India.

Mr. Patten’s itinerary in Sri Lanka according to the press release is as follows:

Tuesday 25th November 2003

11.00 am-11.45 a.m. Briefing Norwegian Ambassador Mr.Hans Brattskar and Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission acting head Mr.Hagrup Haukland.

12.00- 12.30 p.m. Meeting with President Ms Chandrika Kumaratunge

13 p.m.- 14.30 p.m. Lunch-meeting with few MPs of selected other political parties

14.45. p.m.- 15.30 meeting with Sri Lanka Muslim Congress ( SLMC) leader Minister Mr. Rauff Hakim

15.45 p.m. 16.15 p.m.- meeting Minister G.L. Peiris (chief negotiator of the Government of Sri Lanka)

17.00-18.00-Press interviews and speech- Venue: - Sri Lanka Institute for International Relations Purpose: Speech (Conflict resolution: EU experiences to civil society, academics, media, Peace Secretariat and Human Rights Commission)

18.15-18.30- Meeting Foreign Affairs Minister Mr. Tyronne Fernando 18.30- 19.15 p.m. Reception-Oxford University Graduates 20.00-22.00.p.m.-Official meeting and Dinner hosted by Minister Mr. Milinda Morogoda

Wednesday- 26th November

8.00- 9.30 a.m. helicopter to Killinochchi 9.15-11.00 a.m.- meeting with LTTE leadership (Pirapaharan, Thamilchelvan, Maheswaran) 11.00-11.45 a.m.-visit to EC demining project in the neighborhood 13.00-15.30 p.m. Anuradhapura cultural triangle

17.15 p.m.- EU Head of Mission’s debriefing. 18.15-18.45 p.m. meeting with Indian High Commissioner 19.00-20.00 p.m.-Press Conference (followed by side interview with TV programme “ Black and White”)

20.15 p.m.- bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Mr. Ranil Wickremasinghe and dinner hosted by the PM

 

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