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Forces action not against Tamils, reiterates President

COLOMBO: Our Forces are not waging a war against the Tamil community. It is only a humanitarian operation to liberate them from LTTE terrorists. We are not ready at all to negotiate with the LTTE until they lay down arms, said President Mahinda Rajapaksa at a discussion held with foreign and local religious dignitaries at the Temple Trees.

The President said after being voted to power for over seven months he did not take any action against the LTTE because he believed the LTTE would opt to join the peace initiative. The LTTE however, resorted to violence killing unarmed soldiers and civilians.

It was the terror unleashed by the LTTE itself that necessitated the humanitarian operation. The President cited the harmony with which the Sinhala and Muslim people live with the Tamils in other parts of the country.

"The military which liberated the East handed over the reins of power to the civilian authorities" the President stressed.

The religious dignitaries said they had set up an organisation to urge the LTTE to lay down arms and come to the negotiating table.

Ven. Maduluwawe Sobitha Nayake Thera, members of the Maha Sangha, Rev. Bishop Nobert Andradi, Kurukkal Ramachandra Aiyar, Moulavi M. A. Abdulla, and several members of the clergy and laity from Cambodia, Japan, USA and Norway were present.

 

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