No de-proscription, but ban may be suspended, says Tyronne

From Sujeeva Nivunhella in London
Foreign Minister Tyronne Fernando appearing on the Sirasa TV UK channel said that the government had no plans to deproscribe the LTTE but Colombo could temporarily suspend the ban if the Tigers disarm and come for peace negotiations.

"If they become violent, the government could reimpose the ban,’’ the minister said.

He said that the Tigers must drop their separate state demand if they want the ban revoked and come up with an alternative to Eelam that the government can consider.

"We got a mandate at the last election to resolve this problem by negotiations. Norway is at present preparing the ground to start these talks and we will have to wait and see whether we can make peace with the LTTE this time,’’ Fernando said.

He accused the JVP of trying to stir up the people unnecessarily and said that the government’s resolve was to politically settle the Tamil problem without dividing the country.

Fernando attended a Commonwealth meeting attended by Sri Lanka, India, UK, Australia, Canada, Tonga, Bahamas, Tanzania, Malaysia and South Africa in Marlborough House in London.

This meeting addressed the issue of eradicating terrorism worldwide. Sri Lanka, Malaysia and South Africa urged that this scourge cannot be eliminated by war alone and political solutions must be found where necessary.

The Commonwealth meeting also discussed measures to stop money laundering worldwide.