Sri Lankan Tamil party says no progress on political solution
Colombo, July 3 (Xinhua-ANI): The main minority Tamil political party in Sri Lanka said on Tuesday that moves aimed at reaching a political solution to the ethnic issue in the country remained deadlocked.
Tamil National Alliance (TNA) legislator M.A. Sumanthiran told Xinhua that his party leader R. Sampanthan and the leader of the main opposition United National Party (UNP) Ranil Wickremesinghe had met over the weekend in an attempt to look for a way forward.
Following the end of a 30-year war between the Tamil Tiger rebels and the military three years ago the government and the TNA began talks aimed at reaching a political solution.
However the talks were suspended late last year after the government insisted that the TNA take part in a parliament process involving all the political parties to reach a political solution.
The TNA refused to be part of the process known as the Parliament Select Committee (PSC) until an agreement is reached at direct talks between the government and the TNA.
"Mr. Sampanthan met Mr. Wickrememesinghe and discussed several issues regarding the PSC. But there is still no decision or progress. Our position remains that we will join the PSC only once an agreement is reached in bilateral talks with the government. However the government does not seem keen to resume bilateral talks," Sumanthiran said.
Sumanthiran also said that there was an attempt made by the UNP leader to push the government to have bilateral talks with the TNA while also going ahead with the PSC but the government had failed to respond positively to the request.
Amidst pressure from its allies the government of President Mahinda Rajapaksa has refused to have talks only with the TNA on the basis that they are not the sole representatives of the Tamils.
However the UNP has refused to take part in the PSC until the government reaches an agreement with the TNA to join the process.
As a result the PSC has also remained deadlocked despite pressure from Sri Lanka's biggest neighbor India which wants the government to reach a speedy political solution which is acceptable to all the communities in the country. (Xinhua-ANI)
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