President meets Tamil leaders to allay fears in N & E

Saturday, 10 September 2011 00:28 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

President Mahinda Rajapaksa met a delegation of six Tamil leaders from the North and East to discuss arrangements for the resolution of matters resulting from recent alleged incidents in the two provinces.

The Tamil representatives at the meeting held at Temple Trees were from the TNA, TULF and PLOTE.

There was understanding reached on the necessity for cooperation between the Police and organisations of the people on the concerned areas, with a view to the speedy removal of fears and doubts among the people.

Minister Susil Premjayanth, Secretary General of the UPFA, who visited Jaffna at the request of the President to study and report of the current situation, said that at that meeting with the Governor of the Northern Province, senior military and police officers, administrators, members of the clergy, local politicians, and members of civil society, there was agreement reached for resolving the issues through committees at three tiers. On would comprise the Governor, senior administrators, police, and security forces officers, members of the clergy, academics, and politicians.

The other would be at the Divisional Secretary level with the participation of local politicians, and the third would be at the Grama Niladhari level with the participation of the people. The members of the Tamil political parties were invited to participate in these committees.

It was the overall consensus at the meeting that the situation was fast returning to normal, with agreement to pursue all initiatives for further understanding on the need for unity and the assurance of peace. All steps would be taken to remove any hardships caused to the people from these alleged incidents.

In his summing up President Rajapaksa said that the Tamil people had been the worst affected by the 30 year armed conflict. The rich Tamil culture and traditions had been destroyed, and what is needed now was to ensure that Tamil people were given the opportunity to have a new beginning to restore their culture and live according to their cherished values. The Government would take every measure to see that unity was built, he said, urging the Tamil political parties to also join in this effort to help the Tamil people and the country.

The Tamil leaders preset were V. Anandasangaree (TULF), D. Siddharthan (PLOTE), and Suresh  Premachandra, P. Selvarajah, Sumanthiran and Saravanabhavan (TNA).

Associated with the President were Minister Basil Rajapaksa, Minister Susil Premjayanth, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga and the IGP N. Illangakone.