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    No intention to engage SA to solve national problem Featured

    July 10, 2014

    Deputy External Affairs Minister Neomal Perera said in Parliament today (10) that the government had no expectation to engage South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa or the South African government as an international mediator to solve the national problem of Sri Lanka.

    Responding question raised by DNA MP Anura Kumara Dissanayake, Deputy External Affairs Minister Neomal Perera told Parliament yesterday that Ramaphosa had visited Sri Lanka at the invitation of Government of Sri Lanka.

    Deputy Minister Perera said the visit was following a request from the government of Sri Lanka. During the bilateral meeting that took place between the President of Sri Lanka and the President of the Republic of South Africa, Jacob Zuma, on the sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in November 2013, the President of Sri Lanka expressed interest in ascertaining what lessons, if it all, Sri Lanka could elicit from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) process in South Africa.

    Thereafter, President Zuma designated Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, Deputy President of South Africa as Special envoy to Sri Lanka, to share South Africa’s experience of the TRC process. The visit therefore was undertaken in the capacity of a mutual sharing of views on the TRC in order to explore the possibility of adopting a similar mechanism taking into account social and cultural particularities of the country. For the success of such a domestic reconciliation process the imperative need of all stakeholders participating in the Parliamentary Select Committee required to be discussed as well.

    MP Dissanayake said that the people of this country would naturally be left with a question as to how and why the government was inviting an international agent soon after it had adopted a resolution with a two-third majority against international interferences in local affairs.(HC)

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