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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2647

Sri Lankan Government – Tigers Peace Talks started with Cautious Optimism.


Sattahip, Thailand, September 16 - Sri Lanka's government and Tamil Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) began therir talks in earnest, this Monday morning, at theThai Naval base Sattahip, located at the Chonburi Province, 120 Km away from Bangkok, expressing guarded optimism that they can overcome the bitterness of the past This talks was supposed yo be about beginning of the “beginning,” to end one of the protracted and deadliest wars, in the Island republic for the 20 years and more.

Whilst the talks began with earnest in Thailand, people in Sri Lanka, went to Hindu temples, churches, mosques and Buddhist shrines to pray for the success of the talks.

We turn our backs on war Declares Professor Peiris in the inaugural session

"Our nation has resolved, with a firmness of conviction that has served us well at the most critical moments in our long and eventful history, that a sea change is necessary, now that the tempests have abated. Nothing is as evident in all substantial shades of public opinion in our country today as the unquenchable thirst for peace, dignity and opportunity for all our people. The wellsprings of a cultural tradition that derives from abiding and spontaneous respect for diversity and pluralism in their ramifications throughout society fortify us as we prepare to make pivotal decisions, for ourselves and for generations to come, at the crossroads of history. This was stated by. G L Peiris, head of the Sri Lankan delegation at the inaugural session of the Peace Talks at Sattahip, Thailand, on Monday 16 September 2002.

Anton Balasingham expresses confidence about the success of the Talks

I can assure you that we are seriously and sincerely committed to peace and that we will strive our utmost to ensure the success of the negotiations. We are well aware that there are powerful political forces in southern Sri Lanka who are irrationally opposed to peace and ethnic reconciliation. Nevertheless, we are confident that the talks will progress successfully because of the fact that the principal parties in the conflict as well as the overwhelming majority of the people of the island want peace and peaceful resolution of the conflict. This was said by Anton Balasingham the Head of the delegation representing Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam at the at the inaugural session of the Peace Talks at Sattahip, Thailand, on Monday 16 September 2002

Twenty years of armed conflict cannot be resolved overnight.

There exists today a state of relative peace in Sri Lanka, built on the ceasefire agreement in force since February. This relative peace indicates that ultimately a political settlement of the ethnic conflict can be found. In this quest, the parties cannot be left alone. Neither can the accompaniment of the Norwegian Government suffice. They need to be accompanied by the entire international community. It has been a long and, at times, thorny process to get this far. No less difficult times are ahead. The parties will confront problems that can only be solved through painstaking effort and painful compromise. Close to twenty years of armed conflict cannot be resolved overnight. Coming from a very difficult past, Sri Lanka has no easy way forward. This was said by Vidar Helgesen, State Secretary, Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the inaugural session of the Peace Talks at Sattahip, Thailand, on Monday 16 September 2002 .

Lanka gets international backing

By Lasantha Wickrematunga in New York - The Sunday Leader

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe will meet with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the UN on Wednesday, September 18. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has in his report to the General Assembly on Friday said he is encouraged by the progress in Sri Lanka facilitated by Norway.

The Ministerial Vow of the BEER CHURCH:

Compiled by V.Rajeny

Though that is bizarre enough, but now the ULC has its very own
off-shoot (kind of like the Unitarians). It's called the
BEER CHURCH. That's right, folks. It's a great way to avow
your devotion to the divine beverage that God has provided
for us...according to their web site.

Muslims evicted by the LTTE are languishing in the Refugee camps for the last 12 years.


“Over 15,000 families in the Northern Provincial districts of Jaffna, Mannar, Killnochchi, Vavuniya and Mullaitivu were forcibly evicted in the third week of October 1990,”said A.C.Zarook, the Program Officer of the Community Trust Fund, of Puttalam Sri Lanka in his address in the media-briefing event organized the Forum Asia in Bangkok, Thailand.

Peiris foresee step-by-step progress.


In an exclusive interview - Sri Lanka government’s chief negotiator Minister Prof. Gamini Luxman Peiris left for Thailand Saturday morning, leading a four-member delegation to take part in the opening round of the historic peace talks with the Tamil rebels, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), which had been fighting for a separate state for the Tamils in the northeastern portion of the island country. Prior to his departure, he spoke with T.Sabaratnam, Our Editor.

Sri Lankan Government and the LTTE negotiators arrived in Bangkok.


Bangkok, September 15:The four-member Sri Lankan delegation led by Professor G.L. Peris and the head of the Tamil Tiger negotiating team, Anton Balasingham, arrived in Bangkok separately, yesterday evening.It is learnt that, already the Sri Lankan delegation has traveled to the Thai naval base at Sattahip, where the peace talks will begin on Monday.

Nedunkerni, the Ghost Town, to throb again

From: Guna Kajananth at Nedunkerni

Nedunkerni, north of Vavuniya, was the scene of intense fighting. Not a building remains intact. They are all burnt out shells. The roadside junction town was deserted for more than six years. Life is returning to it again. Former residents have begun to trickle back.

Sri Lankans Pray for Peace


Colombo, September 15 Bells were rung and prayers said in most of the places of worship throughout Sri Lanka on Sunday noon, seeking blessings from the God, for the peace talks that begin at Sattahip in Thailand on Monday.

Media Program Sri Lanka Peace Talks 16-18 September 2002

Tomas Stangeland - Embassy of Norway.. Media Program Sri Lanka Peace Talks 16-18 September 2002, Thailand.

Economic ruin drives Sri Lanka foes to Thai peace talks

Colombo (AFP) September 14 - Sri Lanka was better known for its tea until Tamil Tiger rebels grabbed the headlines with spectacular suicide bombings, but nearly two decades later empty war chests have driven the government to a Thai tea party.

Tamil Tigers sit down for peace talks

By Scott McDonald

Sattahip, Thailand (Reuters) September 14- Can the Tamil Tigers, the world's most prolific suicide bombers, change their stripes?
After fighting for nearly two decades for a separate Tamil state in Sri Lanka, they sit down on Monday for peace talks

Point Pedro students demand opening of road

by Namini Wijedasa - The Island

Trouble is brewing again at Point Pedro as students of Hartley College and Methodist Girls School are demanding that the road to their schools be open to the public, warned M. Sripathy, Hartley College principal, last week.

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