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    "Grateful to India for its stand on the U.N. Human Rights Council vote’ - Sri Lanka President

    September 11, 2014

    Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa has said is open for a dialogue with the Tamil National Alliance (TNA).

    In an exclusive interview to TheHindu, President Rajapaksa has denied reports that he was upset about the meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi had with six leaders of the Tamil-majority North and Eastern provinces. It was their right in a democracy “to meet anyone,” he has said.

     

    He has said that he hopes to meet Mr. Modi on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly, if their schedules permitted, later this month. According to officials, Rajapaksa and Modi’s schedules would overlap for a day and efforts were on to find time for a meeting.

     

    In the interview, President Rajapaksa has said that he was grateful for India’s stand on the U.N. Human Rights Council vote, where New Delhi refused to endorse the demand for an inquiry by an international agency into allegations of “war crimes” by the Sri Lankan Army against the LTTE in 2009. “Our government is conducting local investigations, but we won’t allow them to internationalise it,” President Rajapaksa has further said. “The next time it [the UNHRC] will say that there must be an international inquiry into Kashmir. What would be our position? Whether it is against India or Sri Lanka, we will not allow an external inquiry.”

     

    He has also told that  the inquiry into nearly 20,000 “disappearances” during the war was pending, and they still had not concluded who was responsible for the death of Balachandran Prabakaran, son of LTTE leader Velupillai Prabakaran. (KH)

     

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