Sri Lanka on Monday stripped Norway of its role as the peace broker in the nearly three-decade old ethnic strife, a day after its diplomatic mission in Oslo was ransacked by suspected LTTE sympathisers.
The decision comes as Sri Lankan forces are poised to crush the Tamil Tiger rebels after having over run all their bases on the island.
An official statement issued to this effect said, “In these circumstances, the Government of Sri Lanka perceives that it is no longer feasible for Norway to act as facilitator in the engagement with Sri Lanka in the current context.”
“The government of Sri Lanka perceives that there is no room for Norway to act as (peace) facilitator,” a senior official said, adding that a formal letter was handed over to Norway on Monday.
Sri Lanka invited Norway to act as peace facilitator in January 2000, and Oslo managed to secure a ceasefire between the government and LTTE which came into force in February 2002. The truce was abrogated by the Government in January, 2008.
Foreign Secretary Palitha Kohona told PTI “we have questioned the effectiveness of the role of Norway as a peace facilitator.”
Around 100 Tamil demonstrators had yesterday stormed the Sri Lankan embassy in Oslo. Photographs of the attack showed broken windows and other damages in the mission.