Even as they expressed deep concern over the continuing war in the island, international donors on Tuesday pledged $4.5 billion for Sri Lanka as development assistance for the period 2007-2009.
Announcing this at the end of the two-day meeting of the Sri Lanka Development Forum in Galle, the Minister for Enterprise Development and Investment Promotion Sarath Amunugama said that with an already existing commitment of $4.5 billion, Sri Lanka would be getting $9 billion in the coming three years.
Amunugama said that there were no differences in perspective between the Sri Lanka government and the donors on the war against terrorism in the island.
"The government and development partners agreed that terrorism should be separated from finding a solution to the (ethnic) conflict and that a lasting solution should be found through a negotiated settlement," an official statement said.
"The government explained the role of the security forces in protecting civilians, public property and economic centres while safeguarding the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka," the statement added, justifying the on-going military campaigns against the LTTE.
The government also pointed that the intransigence of the LTTE was hampering economic development in the Tamil-speaking northeast.
Apparently satisfied, Praful Patel, Vice President South Asia in the World Bank said: " Sri Lanka has all the possibilities to reach its Millennium Development Goals by 2015."