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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 82

Doublespeak of Erik Solheim

[b]Doublespeak of Erik Solheim [/b]

[b] Colombo, 19 November, ([/b] A former Peace Envoy and the present Norwegian Minister of International Development Erik Solheim, while warmly congratulating Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse on his election as President of Sri Lanka in a statement released through the Norway Embassy, has also said "There may be a danger that Sri Lanka can slide further into uncontrolled violence in considerable parts of the country,” in an interview he had with the Norway’s NRK public radio.

Eric Solheim has said in a message that “the Norwegian government looks forward to continuing our close cooperation with the new President and the Government of Sri Lanka in a wide range of areas, including support for efforts to achieve a lasting peace that inspires confidence in all Sri Lankans.”

However, Mahinda Rajapakse has so far not finalised whether to continue the peace facilitation arrangements with Norway, though he had received a mandate from voters to work towards a negotiated political settlement to the conflict.

But Solheim has extended uncalled for assurances of strong international support as the new President grasps the key challenges of preserving the ceasefire with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam and taking forward the peace process.

In the interview with the Norway’s radio Eric Solheim expressed fears of widening violence in Sri Lanka after ”hawkish Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse” won the island's presidency on Friday.

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