June 22, 2006 (AFP) – Sri Lanka Thursday labelled as “impractical” a demand by Tamil Tiger rebels that European Union truce monitors on the troubled island be replaced within a month, saying more time was needed. “We are concerned that the LTTE has informed the Norwegian facilitator that the change… should be effected within one month, instead of the six months transitional period suggested by Norway,” the country’s peace secretariat said on its website.
“It is highly impractical to expect that these changes could be effected within a one month period as demanded by the LTTE,” it said.
“We hope that the LTTE would reconsider its position and agree to Norway’s more practical and reasonable suggestion.”
In a meeting Wednesday with Norway’s ambassador, Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) political head S. P. Thamilselvan demanded that monitors from EU members Finland, Sweden and Denmark go, saying they undermined the peace process.
The demand was a response to the EU’s outlawing of the rebels and effectively hamstrings the Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission (SLMM), which is comprised of members from the three Nordic nations, as well as Norway and Iceland.
The removal of the three EU members would