India briefed on post – war reconciliation - Foreign Secretary
Sri Lanka briefed India about the progress it has achieved in the
areas of post-war reconciliation and the implementation of the
recommendations of the Lessons
Learnt and Reconciliation Commission(LLRC)
report during the eighth meeting of the India-Sri Lanka Joint
Commission, which was held in Delihi last week, External Affairs
Ministry Secretary Karunathilaka Amunugama yesterday said returning to
Colombo after the meeting.
He said Sri Lanka-India Joint Commission will be the apex body to
discuss or review matters between the two countries and India has agreed
to find collective solutions to various matters, be it political,
educational, economic or otherwise during the Joint Commission meeting.
‘Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and External Affairs Minister
Shri Salman Khurshid have expressed satisfaction -- and solidarity with
Sri Lanka, - Amunugama said.
External Affairs Ministers of Sri Lanka and India,Prof G L Peiris and
Shri Salman Khurshid, who co-chaired the meeting discussed at length the
entire spectrum of bilateral relations between the two countries. “Both
sides agreed to meet regularly with a view to enhance tourism,
people-people relations, co-operation in fisheries, agriculture, health,
education, power, technology sharing , economic and trade co-operation
among other things,” he said.
The Joint Commission took note to work for the finalization of a
memorandum of understanding for cooperation on the “Ten Year
Presidential Initiative to Steer Sri Lanka towards a Trilingual Society
Asked if India had raised any concerns about the 13th amendment,
Amunugama said, “ the state officials of India did not raise any
concerns about the 13th amendment, but Indian media did.” At a press
conference held after the Joint Commission meeting, External Affairs
Minister Prof G L Peiris explained to them that the 13th Amendment is
already law in Sri Lanka and that the government is a coalition
government and there are various views expressed by various coalition
parties about the Amendment.
“Prof Peiris told them that President Mahinda Rajapaksa has ordered
appointment of a Parliamentary Select Committee represented by all
political parties to find a workable solution to various disagreements
that have manifested around it,” he said.
“We explained to them that President Rajapaksa has pronounced his
commitment to enforce such a solution and that the Parliamentary Select
Committee has been mandated to arrive at a resolution within six
months,” said Amunugama.
Prof G L Peiris apprised them how the PSC process to reach a
political consensus regarding the matter was being dragged as a result
of non participation of the members of the Tamil National Alliance to
He said, India has been made aware by Prof G L Peiris about various
anti-government elements trying to cause unrest in the country with
disinformation campaigns. Amunugama said he did not know why certain
media establishments are prone to carry articles carrying negative views
about the country whenever they learn that some state officials from
another country plan to visit Colombo.
“For example, the news about forthcoming visits by US state officials
to the country and the much anticipated visit by UN Human Rights High
Commissioner Navaneetham Pillay has been presented to the public with a
negative tone as if the country will receive a negative impact on
account of these visits,” he said.
“The US state officials visit the country to interact with us as they
would do with other countries. They will also visit some other countries
in South East Asia. Besides, it is good that they visit Sri Lanka
because they can see for themselves the real situation and what is
happening in Sri Lanka.” “We have nothing to hide in Sri Lanka,” he