Who is fearful of attending the forthcoming Geneva meeting, the
GOSL or the LTTE?. Mr M.P.D.Dissanayake opens his article entitled
‘Review of Ceasefire Agreement” with the startling proposition that
it is the LTTE that will attend this session most reluctantly, and
do everything they can to postpone these talks indefinitely. He
mouths this idea, despite the fact that it is the LTTE that has been
seeking to revitalize the terms of the Agreement.
On reading his article, it is obvious that he, like the present
GOSL, will resort to every tactic to replace the existing CFA with
an unrecognizable substitute, despite the fact that the primary
objective of the meeting is to ensure the effective implementation
of the existing CFA, not the replacement of it with a GOSL authored
Having commenced with this clear misconception as to the object of
this conference, he continues with a layman's misconception that
legal agreements could easily be amended and altered unilaterally by
one party to the Agreement, as and when they choose to do so.
What does the writer think? That this is some kind of a parlor game
or a serious legal agreement which binds both parties. Is this
solemn binding agreement subject to a condition that any party can
change its content whenever it wishes to do so.? Is this what this
lawyer[ if he is one] regards as the manner in which a legal
agreement is honored, or is he of the view that legal agreements are
just pointless pieces of paper, designed to be torn up, as the BC
agreement was, or amended on the unilateral decision of one party
that takes the view that its terms do not please them now? Is it a
fundamental phenomenon of Sinhalese law and justice, that propounds
the ludicrous proposition that “If we don’t like it, we can ignore
it or change it to suit our revised desires?”
What is equally alarming is his outrageous and unbelievable
assertion that there is no ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka. He brazenly
asserts that “it is abundantly clear Tamils are living peacefully in
SL with equal opportunities, with freedom of expression and movement
in any part of the island” What kind of ivory tower does Mr
Dissanayake descend upon us from?
Why would we have a civil war and a need for a CFA if that were the
is it because, as he dares to suggest that “It is the
Sinhalese and Muslims who are deprived of these rights by the Tamil
terrorists”? Why does he not ask himself a simple question.? Who
sought to be freed from whom? Was it the Tamils seeking freedom from
Sinhalese rule, ot the Sinhalese seeking freedom from Tamil rule?
Were we the masters of their destiny, or were they masters of ours?
Can one be expected to regard this writer, who turns the fundamental
realities upside down, seriously?
His first objection to the existing CFA is that the identity of the
person who signed on behalf of the LTTE is not stated in the body of
the Agreement. Have the LTTE ever denied being a party to the
Agreement? What kind of strained petty fogging concern is this, of
his? Was it not the LTTE who pressed the government to fashion a
CFA? This is nothing more that a desperate strained effort to
suggest that Amendments to the original CFA are called for.
His demand for an amendment to Article 1.3: is founded on his
misconception that obligations imposed on one party are not
His proposed amendments to article 2.12: reveal a naiveté that is
astonishing. The need to revert to the regular criminal code to
justify searches and seizures is an admirable recognition by the
Wickremesinghe government, that the Prevention of Terrorism Act,
devised by that violent anti Tamil butcher, J R Jayawardena, was
nothing more than his dictatorial effort to flatten and quash the
legitimate legal rights of Tamils.
Mr Dissanayake asks the absurd
question “Why should the LTTE fear this act if they refrain from
acts of terrorism ? What has one got to do with the other? The PTA
was designed to deny Tamils the protections afforded to them under
the Criminal Procedure Code, against illegal searches and seizures.
What has the revival of those protections got to do with, what he
regards as acts of terrorism. Here again, his logic is seriously
He goes on to suggest that if this provision was to be retained, the
LTTE should agree to lay down and return its arms. Once again we
ask, where is there any connection between the two? Does he not
further realize that the Tamils would be committing political
suicide if the LTTE agreed to lay down their arms? How unrealistic
can this isolated and withdrawn hermit be?
His objection to Article 3:3: obliging the S L monitoring mission to
report to the Norwegians rather than a host of nations, may now be
academic, in view of the government’s recognition of Norway to act
as the acceptable go between at this Geneva conference.
His final objection is that there are no punitive measures provided
for a breach of this contract. Who would determine whether or not
there has been a breach or how the alleged breach should be
punished? He suggests the The S L monitoring mission? How impartial
can one expect them to be?
Furthermore, his assessment of the number of violations by each side
are those alleged by the GOSL, which figures are highly suspect.
Does he expect the Monitoring mission to be scrupulously impartial,
who apparently adopt these assessments: and when he himself shows no
ability on his part, as a mere commentator and academic critic , to
His last suggestion is that smuggling of arms by the LTTE should be
listed as an offense. What does he expect the LTTE to do while the
SL government enters into hosts of agreements to strengthen its
military might while the Ceasefire lasts? Watch, wait and be ready
to be annihilated?
It is time that the writer realized that the Sinhalese politicians
have wished throughout our independent history, that we Tamils and
disgruntled Muslims were yesterdays news. Far from protecting the
just rights of Tamils and other ethnic groups, they have by
unyielding legislation, thwarted, stymied, intruded into and
frustrated every minority effort to be treated as equals. The
protections they pretended to afford to non Sinhalese Buddhists were
like a new wall you could not lean on, for fear that the ceiling and
roof would promptly collapse with it, if you did.
This gentleman needs to have his nose to the ground before engaging
in an exercise of this nature.
His partiality is founded on his monumental ignorance of the nations
history since Independence from Britain 1948. It is time he realized
that discrimination is an inherent instinct of the average Sinhalese
politician, who is far from ready to grant equality to anyone but
his own kind.
It is like the story of the junk salesman who was asked “How do you
know what is valuable and what is junk? The salesman replied “What
they don’t buy is junk” What the Sinhalese have offered us Tamils to
ease our dissatisfactions, has been rejected by the Tamils for the
The ultimate truth is that people like Mr Dissanayake and people of
his ilk in the GOSL will continue to live in orbits of their own
creation. To them, Tamils are a dangerous irritant, who they wish
would just go away.
“GOSL commits itself the safeguard the sovereign and territorial
integrity of SL” ....
“without engaging in offensive operations against the LTTE” Mr
Dissanayake demands that the LTTE be expressly subject to