Sri Lanka’s top Nordic peace envoys to visit the island next week

Mar. 29 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Nordic peace envoys will visit the island next week for a series of meetings with the government and the Tamil Tiger rebels, the Norwegian embassy said Wednesday. New special envoy Jon Hanssen-Baur will make his maiden visit to the island on Monday April 3 for four-days.

Hanssen-Baur, a Middle East expert, will meet President Mahinda Rajapakse, government representatives and officials from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Ealam (LTTE).

He will also meet with other political leaders, the Norwegian statement said.

Norway’s International Development Minister Erik Solheim, who earlier handled the island’s peace process on a day-to-day basis, will make a brief visit to Colombo on Thursday April 6 for meetings.

Solheim is responsible for Norway’s role as facilitator of the peace process.

Top Tamil Tiger peace negotiation Anton Balasingham is due to meet Solheim in London today to prepare the groundwork for next month’s meeting between the Colombo government and the LTTE.

The statement comes as Sri Lanka’s chief peace negotiator Nimal Siripala de Silva assured the government’s commitment to go ahead with talks in Switzerland, despite Saturday