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Sri Lanka asks Norway to save peace bid amid war fears

Sri Lanka said Wednesday it has asked Norway to keep trying to broker peace with Tamil Tiger rebels, amid a recent spate of violence which has killed 29 and raised fears that the country could slip back into war. Sri Lanka said Wednesday it has asked Norway to keep trying to broker peace with Tamil Tiger rebels, amid a recent spate of violence which has killed 29 and raised fears that the country could slip back into war. The new government of President Mahinda Rajapakse -- who had earlier promised to overhaul the peace bid and review the role of the Norwegians -- made a U-turn and asked Oslo to stay on.

The president told Norwegian ambassador Hans Brattskar to keep up the effort even though two key government allies had earlier insisted that Norway should be expelled from the faltering peace process.

"President Rajapakse invited the Royal Norwegian government to continue its role as facilitator to the peace process in Sri Lanka," a government statement said.

Norway reacted cautiously and said it would continue its efforts under unspecified conditions.

"Our initial reaction is that it is positive that we have been asked to continue our work. This is a vote of confidence," said Erik

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