JVP seeks ouster of Nordic monitors
The Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP), a key ally of the ruling United Peoples' Alliance (UPA), has asked President Mahinda Rajapaksa to throw the Nordic truce monitors out of the country, as they have stopped functioning and the LTTE too is dissatisfied with their work.
"There was no peace process, and there is no peace process. The SLMM (Sri Lanka Monitoring Mission) is virtually defunct.
The LTTE is also not accepting its role. The SLMM should be thrown out of the country," demanded Somawansa Amarasinghe, the top-most leader of the JVP.
"The Sri Lankan government has no guts to throw the SLMM out," Amarasinghe told the media here on Wednesday.
He said that the SLMM had stopped monitoring movements in the sea following the LTTE's hostile actions.
The LTTE has also been refusing to recognize monitors belonging to the European Union countries after the EU banned it in May this year. It has also charged the monitors of a pro-government bias.
Assault on sovereignty
The JVP leader said that the international community, including the co-chairs of the Tokyo donors' conference and the Japanese Special Envoy Yasushi Akashi, were lecturing to Sri Lankans about how to run their country, and abridging Sri Lanka's sovereignty in the process.
They were also equating the sovereign state of Sri Lanka with a terrorist group like the LTTE.
These were not acceptable, Amarasinghe said.
The Sri Lankan armed forces were fully capable of defeating the LTTE, the JVP leader said.
But defeating the terrorists was not the only objective of the JVP, he added.
Democracy had to be restored in the North East where the LTTE held sway, and it should be ensured in the rest of the country, so that all Sri Lankans, whether Tamils, Muslims or Sinhalas, enjoyed freedom and the fruits of economic development equally.
Lanka not a failed state
Amarasinghe took exception to a document released by the US-based "Fund for Peace" which said that Sri Lanka was number 25, between Ruwanda and Somalia, in a list of "Failed States".
Even a person with a little acquaintance with Sri Lanka would be able to see how erroneous this was, he said. He attributed this to hostile propaganda in the West.
Amarasinghe also charged that the Fund for Peace was funded by the LTTE.
He pointed out that the terror group had gone to town on the US organisation's characterization of Sri Lanka, and had gone on to say that, as a failed state, Sri Lanka was incapable of solving the ethnic problem.
Condition for joining Rajapaksa govt
The JVP leader charged that President Mahinda Rajapaksa was not implementing his own election manifesto called Mahinda Chintanaya (Mahinda's thoughts).
The JVP was engaged in a dialogue with the President to "reinvigorate and operationalise the Mahinda Chintanaya", Amarasinghe said.
Asked if the JVP was planning to join the government as desired by the President, he said that if the peoples' mandate for the Mahinda Chintanaya was implemented fully, his party would join the government.
Everything would depend on the outcome of the current discussions, he added.
The JVP was hopeful of obtaining its objectives, and towards this end, the talks with the President were being conducted in a "friendly manner", Amarasinghe said.
The media here has been reporting that the JVP is on the verge of joining the government, and is only waiting for President Rajapaksa to accept some of its demands.
According to The Morning Leader of Wednesday, the JVP has put two conditions for joining the government: First, annul the 1988 merger of the Northern and Eastern province (a province with a majority of Tamil-speakers); second, disarm the LTTE before re-commencing talks with it.