Sri Lanka needs new power sharing deal to end conflict: US

May 20, 2009 (LBO) – The United States said a new power sharing deal and tolerance was required to achieve lasting peace in Sri Lanka and truly defeat terrorism. “The United States welcomes the cessation of fighting in Sri Lanka and the apparent conclusion to its long-running conflict,” a statement issued by the US embassy in Colombo said.

It came a day after the Sri Lankan government officially declared it had completely defeated Tamil Tiger rebels and killed rebel leaders, including Tiger supremo Velupillai Prabhakaran, in a final assault by army commandos.

“To truly defeat terrorism, the government of Sri Lanka needs to begin to heal the wounds of the conflict and work toward building a democratic, prosperous, tolerant and united Sri Lanka and work toward justice and reconciliation for both sides,” the statement said.

“A lasting peace in Sri Lanka depends on Sinhalese, Tamils and all other Sri Lankans working together to achieve new power sharing arrangements that safeguard and promote the rights of all Sri Lankans.”

The US statement said the 26-year-old conflict has cost tens of thousands of Sinhalese and Tamil lives, uprooted countless Sri