Sri Lanka rejects Tiger demand for unconditional talks

Sri Lanka’s government Wednesday rejected a rebel demand for an unconditional resumption of talks and accused Tiger guerrillas of using “threateneing language” to undermine peace efforts. Sri Lanka’s government Wednesday rejected a rebel demand for an unconditional resumption of talks and accused Tiger guerrillas of using “threateneing language” to undermine peace efforts. In its first reaction to rebel warnings to return to their “freedom struggle” unless the 19-month impasse in peace talks was ended by Colombo, the government said the rebel position was unacceptable.

“A call, couched in threatening language, from the LTTE Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) now for a resumption of negotiations without conditions, while setting conditions itself by insisting unilaterally on a single agenda item is scarcely conducive to good faith negotiations,” the government said.

However, Colombo said it was still committed to a negotiated settlement.

“The government of Sri Lanka is in communication with the Royal Norwegian Government on future steps to be taken in the peace process,” it said in a statement.

Colombo was ready to discuss the LTTE’s proposal for self-rule, but wanted