Ready for talks with LTTE any time: Sri Lankan Govt reports AP, 28 March 2007
"Colombo, March 28 (AP): Sri Lanka's Government said it was ready to hold peace talks anytime with the Tamil Tigers, following two days of dramatic attacks by the rebels, including their first airstrike and a suicide bombing outside a military camp. The attacks Monday and Tuesday killed 11 people and wounded 36.
``We must try to bring a comprehensive and substantial peace,'' Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogolagama told reporters Tuesday. ``Our government believes that we need to talk, we need to explore all avenues,'' he said, adding that if the rebels agreed to negotiation, ``we can have it tomorrow.'' .....
Earlier Tuesday, a rebel drove an explosive-laden tractor to the Chinkaladi military camp in the eastern district of Batticaloa, drawing fire from guards and triggering a blast... The attacks came a day after at least one rebel propeller plane bombed a Sri Lankan air force base outside the capital, Colombo, in the separatists' first airstrike since they started their campaign for a homeland for the country's Tamil minority in 1983...."
No talks with Tigers: top Lanka aide reports PTI, 28 March 2007
The daring air attack by the Tamil Tiger rebels has underscored the need to wipe out the rebels' military assets and not pursue any kind negotiations with them, a top official of the island nation said today. Dayan Jayatilleka, an Advisor to President Mahinda Rajapaksa and the man tipped to be Sri Lanka's next Ambassador to the UN mission in Geneva, said in an open letter today that there can be no more negotiations.
"The fundamental lessons of the Tiger air raid are quite the opposite of those that will be drawn by the appeasers and their patrons in the West," Jayatilleka wrote. "These elements will say that the raid proves that a military victory over the LTTE is impossible and that only a peaceful negotiated settlement is feasible. I would argue the exact opposite. The air raid demonstrates the utter impossibility of peaceful coexistence between a militarised Tiger-controlled territory and the Sri Lankan state."
His remarks follow comments by Bogollegama that the government was still willing to talk with the Tigers. However, Bogollegama qualified his remarks saying that the government was not making a new offer or launching a new initiative to resume talks which remain deadlocked since October last year.