A muted Christmas | india | Hindustan Times
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A muted Christmas

Church leaders in Lanka had called for restrained celebrations in memory of the tsunami that killed over 35,000 on this island.

india Updated: Dec 26, 2005 02:40 IST

The Christmas decorations start from the airport itself, but Christmas in Sri Lanka has been subdued by the memory of one disaster and the possibility of another. Church leaders here had called for restrained celebrations in memory of the tsunami that killed over 35,000 on this island last December 26.

Meanwhile, war clouds are milling. And the truce between the government and the LTTE is shaky.

A Tamil legislator, Joseph Pararajasingham, was shot dead in the Roman Catholic church in Batticaloa in eastern Sri Lanka, while attending a Christmas midnight mass. The government says the LTTE did it. The LTTE say Sri Lankan military intelligence and rebel LTTE commander Karuna are behind the killing. In the past few days, tension between government security forces and the LTTE have risen after 13 Navy men were killed by the Tigers last Friday.

In his Christmas message to the nation, President Mahinda Rajapakse has stressed the need for peace. The President will address the nation from Peraliya, the site of the tsunami train disaster, on December 26.