Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Robert O. Blake during his meeting with President Mahinda Rajapaksa today discussed the report by the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).
Minister of External Affairs Prof. G. L. Peiris speaking to the Daily Mirror stated that Mr. Blake had inquired about the LLRC report and that the President assured him that the report would be out mid-November and that the government would decide on its next course of action based on this report. He had further called on the international community to not prejudge the report but to view it objectively and dispassionately.
The group present at the meeting included the Minister of External Affairs and Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga. They informed Mr. Blake that talks with the Tamil National Alliance would resume on Friday. “We informed him that these talks would resume and this would carry forward the continuous and constructive dialogue between the two groups.
He was very interested in this,” Minister Peiris said. Prof. Peiris also stated that the President dispelled any myths held by Mr. Blake that there was militarisation of the North. “We told him that there was no such thing.
There were military camps in the north like everywhere else in the island and that such a presence was necessary, as is the case of other countries,” he said. Blake will visit Jaffna tomorrow and meet with officials of the government, civil society leaders and university students, a US Embassy official told the Daily Mirror. Prior to his departure Blake will have a rap-up a meeting with the Minister of External Affairs and the Secretary to the President on Wednesday. (Dianne Silva)/