Peace Times

Chief Regulatory Officer at CSE Renuke Wijayawardhane presenting the listing certificate to Executive Chairperson at Renuka Hotels Shibani Thambiayah

WASHINGTON, Jan 6, 2006 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said Thursday that his government did not want a war with the Tamil Tigers and appealed to the rebels to be flexible, return to the negotiating table and jointly strengthen a Norwegian-backed ceasefire. WASHINGTON, Jan 6, 2006 (AFP) – Sri Lanka’s Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera said Thursday that his government did not want a war with the Tamil Tigers and appealed to the rebels to be flexible, return to the negotiating table and jointly strengthen a Norwegian-backed ceasefire. “The next step has to be negotiations and nothing else because our government does not believe in war,” Samaraweera told AFP in an interview in Washington after holding talks with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

He said Rice gave an assurance that the United States “will do whatever possible” to kickstart the stalled peace process as early as possible.

Samaraweera said the new government of President Mahinda Rajapakse wanted to give priority to expanding the island nation’s economic growth, which hit 6.2 percent last year, on the back of tourism and foreign investments.

“So our new government is very keen to realize our full potential and war is not an option,” he said.

There has been widespread