International community must ensure Sri Lanka honours CFA and paves way for talks- LTTE

[TamilNet, Thursday, 14 September 2006, 00:03 GMT]
Welcoming the call by the Co-Chairs of Sri Lanka’s donor community for the Colombo government to abide by the February 2002 Ceasefire Agreement (CFA) and implement the pledges it made in Geneva, the Liberation Tigers said Wednesday it is the responsibility of the Norwegian facilitators and international community to ensure the Rajapakse government adheres to the territorial demarcations, terms and conditions of the CFA and thereby creates a conducive atmosphere for talks.

Speaking to Tamilnet Wednesday evening, the head of the LTTE’s Political Wing, Mr. S. P. Thamilchelvan welcomed the Co-Chairs insistence Tuesday that the Sri Lankan government “must ensure its military abides by the Ceasefire Agreement and implements the pledges from the Geneva meeting in February 2006.”

“It is the Sri Lankan government which, launching major aggression against our controlled areas, has carried out breaches of the CFA of the utmost seriousness. It is therefore the primary responsibility of the [Mahinda] Rajapakse regime to create a conducive environment by respecting the lines of territorial demarcation underpinning the CFA so that the peace process can move forward,” Mr. Thamilchelvan said.

Mr. Thamilchelvan said the LTTE’s position had been unambiguously set out when the Tigers met with a Norwegian delegation led by Ambassador Hans Brattskar on September 6 in Kilinochchi.

There was no change in the LTTE policy since then, Mr. Thamilchelvan said, adding that it had been reiterated in his recent interview with Reuters on Tuesday.

Reaffirming the LTTE’s commitment to the peace process, Mr. Thamilchelvan said it was the responsibility of the Norwegian facilitators supported by the international community to ensure Colombo takes concrete steps towards the speedy creation of a conducive environment for talks.

Asked about the dispute over supplies for the population of the Jaffna peninsula, Mr. Thamilchelvan said the LTTE has told the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) that the Tigers would cooperate fully in the transportation of humanitarian supplies through demarcated land routes.

However, the Sri Lankan government, engaged in military aggression against the LTTE, was determined not to reopen the supply routes, he said.

And apart from forcibly occupying LTTE-controlled areas by military aggression, the Sri Lankan armed forces have also sharply escalated abductions, extra-judicial killings and other abuses against the Tamil people, Mr. Thamilchelvan pointed out.

These matters would be taken up again when the new leadership of the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM) met the LTTE on Friday, he said.

Mr. Thamilchelvan hailed the international community’s recognition of the prevailing ground situation, particularly welcoming its condemnation of the Sri Lanka Air Force airstrike on Mullaitivu in August which killed 51 schoolgirls and 4 staff.


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