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Wickremesinghe's statement irks SL govt

Former PM Ranil Wickremesinghe's comment to the Indian media that the Mahinda Rajapaksa Govt has failed in its war against terror has triggered sharp reactions, reports Sutirtho Patranobis.
By Sutirtho Patranobis | Hindustan Times, Colombo
UPDATED ON JUN 11, 2008 10:05 PM IST

Former PM and Opposition United National Party (UNP) leader Ranil Wickremesinghe's comment to the Indian media that the Mahinda Rajapaksa government has failed in its war against terror has triggered sharp reactions back home.

Wickremesinghe during his current visit to India told reporters that the recent series of blasts in Sri Lanka revealed that only a responsive government would be able to put an end to terrorism, indicating that the current dispensation has miserably failed to do so.

Minister and spokesperson Keheliya Rambukwalle on Wednesday condemned Wickremesinghe's statement, saying that while the opposition leader criticised the government, he failed to raise one single point against the LTTE.

“He has totally undermined all the achievements of the government. Not only have we defeated the LTTE in the East, but also held elections there,” Rambukwalle said.

Meanwhile, three sailors and four LTTE cadres were killed during a pitched battle between the Sea Tigers – LTTE's naval arm – and the Sri Lankan navy early on Wednesday in the northwestern island of Mannar.

Among the dead was Sirimaran, a senior LTTE cadre who was leading the six Sea Tiger boats, military spokesperson, UDaya Nanayakkara said.

The pro-LTTE Tamilnet website reported that the attack was carried out by a special unit of the Sea Tigers.

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