Give peace a chance

THERE is hope in Sri Lanka. Contrary to growing apprehensions that the election of Mahinda Rajapakse could derail the peace process, the island nation appears to be making a fresh attempt to resolve the Tamil question.

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Published: Wed 30 Nov 2005, 9:26 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 6:48 PM

The tone and tenor of the statements by both LTTE chief Prabhakaran and President Rajapakse this week have revived the hopes of Sri Lankans that the conflict resolution may after all be possible.

In his heroes’ day speech, Prabhakaran talked tough with an eye on his Tamil constituency. However, when he said the Tigers could return to the gun if the new president didn’t settle the Tamil question by next year, he was only reaching out to Colombo. It was talking peace, LTTE style. This is why President Rajapakse lost no time in responding to Prabhakaran’s overture by inviting the Tigers to peace talks.

Indeed, peace and resolution of the Tamil question once and for all should be the first priority of President Rajapakse, who having served as the prime minister knows the formidable challenges he faces. The new leader mustn’t lose any more time. He knows what is at stake. Sri Lanka’s future and survival as a nation state depend on the peaceful resolution of the Tamil question.

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