After 30 years, the writ of the central government now runs throughout the whole country, consequent to the successful elimination of LTTE terrorism, and the responsibility for the revival of the battered economy now rests solely with the State Sector, said Prof. G. L. Peiris, Minister of Export Development and International Trade and acting Minister of Posts and Telecommunications at a meeting held at the Export Development Board (EDB) auditorium in Colombo last Thursday (21).
The meeting was convened to felicitate the President and the armed forces for the eradicating terrorism in the country.
The Minister said the Ministry of Export Development and International Trade and other organizations that come under its purview should be able to take the lead in this great national effort.
Even after the successful conclusion of the battle against terrorism, Sri Lanka is still faced with many significant threats. Several powerful nations in the world are arrayed against it and they intend, at the international level, to inquire into activities that had taken place in Sri Lanka during the recent past, he noted.
But, Prof. Peiris reiterated that such countries did not have any legal or moral right to make such inquiries. Even the United Nations could interfere in the affairs of a country only if a situation developing in that country would spill over into the neighbouring states or negatively affect another country. This aspect was clearly stated in Article 7 of the United Nations Constitution.
He said that such a situation never developed or existed in Sri Lanka and what occurred here was a totally internal affair of an independent country. He also highlighted the right of a sovereign nation to crush any terrorist threat to it and said that the international community had no moral or legal basis to interfere in the internal affairs of Sri Lanka.
Prof. Peiris also said that it was not only Sri Lanka that suffered at the hands of LTTE terrorism. A respected Indian leader, Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by the LTTE. As such, it is the duty and obligation of the international community to appreciate and be grateful for the total eradication of such terrorism from the face of the earth rather than engaging in prevarications.
Quoting the President, the Minister said that his Ministry had been thrust with the responsibility to play a specific role in the great effort to forge a united nation sans ethnic or religious divisions.
The address of welcome was made by S. Ranugge, Secretary to the Ministry Export Development and International Trade. Among others in attendance were Janaka Sugathadasa and W. M. K. R. Balachandra, Additional Secretaries to the Ministry, Anil Koswatte, Chairman, EDB, Ms. Sujatha Weerakoon, Director-General, EDB, Niel Maagederagamage, Director-General, Department of Commerce and C. A. N. Perera, Chairman, Sri Lanka Export Credit Insurance Corporation (SLECIC). The meeting was also attended by the staff of the Ministry of Export Development and International Trade. Export Development Board, Department of Commerce and Sri Lanka Export Credit Insurance Corporation.