Peace talks could be delayed: Norway

Updated on May 03, 2004 10:43 AM IST

The Norwegian peace brokers have said that the stalled peace talks between the Lankan Govt and LTTE could take time to revive.

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PTI | ByPress Trust of India, Colombo

The stalled peace talks between the Sri Lankan Governement and Tamil Tigers rebels could take time to revive, Norwegian peace brokers said on Sunday while warning both sides to honour a truce.

Norway's Deputy Foreign Minister Vidar Helgesen who held talks with President Chandrika Kumaratunga on Sunday said there could be delays in getting the two sides back to the table.

"It might take some time before the parties are in a position to return to the negotiation table," Helgesen said in a statement.

"In the meantime it is important for both sides to respect and abide by the cease-fire agreement and to work closely with the truce monitors."

Helgesen opened talks with Kumaratunga on renewing Oslo's peace brokering efforts in Sri Lanka where 60,000 people have died in three decades of ethnic violence.

Kumaratunga in a separate statement said she told the Norwegians that there should be speedy rehabilitation work in the island's embattled northern and eastern regions with the full participation of the Tamil Tigers.

"The exchange of views was constructive and cordial. The discussions focussed on a range of issues related to the modalities and substance of the negotiations process and the need to commence development work in the north and the east without delay, with the full participation of the LTTE," Kumaratunga's office said in a statement.

Sri Lanka's Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar also joined the talks, which included another Norwegian envoy, Erik Solheim at the central hill resort of Nuwara Eliya, 180 kilometres east of here.

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