COLOMBO: The LTTE on Tuesday said it was committed to talks to demonstrate its true "character just one more time" but would be forced into "unfortunate decision to re-examine if large-scale offensives" by Colombo do not stop.
LTTE political head S.P. Thamilchelvan conveyed this to Norwegian Ambassador Hans Brattskar who visited Kilinochchi with a seven-point agenda for the Geneva talks set by the Mahinda Rajapakse Government.
Quoting Mr. Rajapakse, Defence spokesperson and Minister Keheliya Rambukwella told a news conference here that the talks would be centred on seven core issues: democracy, multi-party system, pluralism, human rights, child recruitment, development of the North and East and devolution.
It is immediately not clear if the Tamil Tigers have agreed to the Government's agenda. The LTTE has so far not announced its own.
A report said Mr. Thamilchelvan told Norwegian Special Envoy Jon Hanssen Bauer last week that the LTTE would re-examine its stand on talks if large-scale offensives were not halted.
"Thamilchelvan said that he has told this to the special envoy a week ago and again through a letter following the Panichchankerni offensive by the Sri Lankan military, and then again in today's meeting. In response to a question from the press about how the GoSL [Government of Sri Lanka] can be trusted to implement whatever is promised at the talks he said that the LTTE is not hopeful that the GoSL will implement any promises it makes.
Stress on pluralism
Thamilchelvan said that the LTTE is obliged to demonstrate this character of the GoSL to the international community just one more time," the report said.
It said Mr. Thamilchelvan emphasized the responsibility of the Norwegian facilitators and the international community to take urgent steps to facilitate the work of the Sri Lankan Monitoring Mission (SLMM).
"[The] SLMM is here for the sole purpose to monitor ceasefire violations. The Government of Sri Lanka has blocked the SLMM monitors from visiting places of military clashes thus preventing them from determining who is instigating the clashes. Behind this cover, the GoSL is persisting with the story that their military attacks are only defensive. SLMM must be given the space to determine this for themselves."
On the UNP-SLFP pact in the making, Mr. Thamilchelvan has been quoted as saying the Sinhala politicians know to conduct their politics only by using the Tamil issue. "The latest alliance must also be seen in that light. Both parties are taking part in this to save their respective political future. This alliance is neither permanent nor sincere."
Mr. Rambukwella said pluralism and democracy would enable all citizens to participate in the democratic process and multi-party system would ensure full freedom for political parties to function democratically.
He said on an invitation from New Delhi, a delegation of the All Party Committee would tour India to study the panchayat system.