- Published on Wednesday, 24 April 2013 09:43
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As long as this government is in power no one or no parties will be allowed to take up arms against the motherland and will not leave room for anyone to divide the country.
The people should have complete faith and confidence that the land that was liberated from terrorism through great sacrifice of life will not be handed over to the forces of separatism again.
This was emphasized by President Mahinda Rajapaksa at a function held on Tuesday (23) for the presentation of the President’s and Regimental Colours to the Sri Lanka Artillery regiment. The function was held at the Artillery Regiment base in Panagoda.
The President said that some countries are still groping in the dark without understanding the nature of terrorism and the only way to eliminate the scourge of terrorism from the world is to understand its true nature and fight it for what it is, instead of giving terrorism various definitions and tags.
The President emphasized that wherever it happens, be it in Asia, Middle East countries or anywhere in the world, terrorism is terrorism, and all countries should make determined efforts to totally eliminate terrorism.
He said that the dignity and the delight when the National Flag flutters in the air get increased with the artillery sounds of the artillery regiment. He said that the artillery regiment is a supreme sign of our national pride, and said that because of the artillery regiment we were able to win the war and save the life of several thousand soldiers.
The President said that several countries although they are very powerful are still unable to defeat terrorism and they are suffering from the scourges of terrorism, and bombs are being blasted in several towns in the powerful countries. The President said that with dedication and determined efforts terrorism can be defeated and said that he is praying for befall of wisdom on all countries in the world to totally eliminate terrorism.
The President pointed out that Sri Lanka had silenced the guns of terrorists in 2009 and since then Eelamist’s have realized that they cannot divide the country by the force of weapons. However, terrorist remnants now residing in other countries are resorting to new tactics to divide the country.
Making special reference to the Gunners of the Artillery Regiment, the President said, although Sri Lankans’ first saw Artillery guns in 1505 when the Portuguese invaded the island, they were not taken aback. Instead in a few years the Lankans designed their own artillery guns and used them successfully against the enemy.
The President also stated that although when fighting against the LTTE, we had to seek foreign help largely to get weapons, we need to do research and as Sri Lankans we should produce what we need in our own soil. He said that this is how we can add value to our hard won peace.
Referring to the battle waged by the artillery regiment, the President said that the regiment lost 23 officers and 529 personnel from other ranks. In addition many were injured, some permanently. He said that their sacrifices will be remembered for ever. He said Artillery Gunners are a symbol of a nation and that their performances at national events always invoke pride. He said that there is no other befitting time for the Regiment to be presented with President’s and Regimental Colours than when it is celebrating its 125th Anniversary.
Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development Gotabhaya Rajapaksa, Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunge, Army Commander, Lt.Gen. Jagath Jayasuriya, Artillery Regiment Commandant Maj. Gen. JC Rambukpotha, many distinguished invited guests, soldiers of the regiment and their parents attended the function. (niz)