Norwegian peace brokers to test Sri Lanka’s turbulent political waters

Norwegian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Vidar Helgesen, will arrive in Sri Lanka on Monday, for a five day political update. Norwegian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Vidar Helgesen, will arrive in Sri Lanka on Monday, for a five day political update. Helgesen is scheduled to meet President Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga and key stakeholders of Sri Lanka’s peace process, including the LTTE and other political parties during his visit.

“He will have meetings with President Kumaratunga, representatives of the government and with the LTTE. He will also meet with representatives from other political parties and civil society,” said a statement from the Norwegian embassy on Friday.

“Mr Helgesen will also meet with the Muslim community in Kalmunai and visit tsunami-affected areas in Ampara district,” it said.

The Norwegian embassy however, maintains that the visit is not connected to the joint mechanism that was instrumental in tearing apart the island’s ruling coalition government.

On Thursday the JVP withdrew from the UPFA coalition government over the joint mechanism – a tsunami aid delivery m