Sri Lanka to improve living standards in former war-torn north

COLOMBO, Nov. 19 (Xinhua) — The Sri Lankan government on Thursday said it will launch special projects in war-ravaged north to improve living conditions of the families residing there.

Co-Cabinet Spokesperson and Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilaka told a media briefing here that on a proposal submitted to the cabinet by Minister of Rehabilitation and Resettlement, D.M. Swaminathan, the government had approved implementation of ten projects to upgrade the living status of these communities.

The projects are also to be implemented for the families who are residing in more than six islands around the northern Jaffna peninsula, Karunathilaka added.

The projects include upgrading the transport system in these areas for families to travel from the islands to the mainland, Karunathilaka said.

Sri Lanka’s north was one of the worst affected in a 30-year civil war between government troops and Tamil Tiger rebels and was almost cut off for most duration of the war from the rest of the country.

After the end of the conflict in May 2009 with the defeat of the Tigers, thousands of people were left displaced with the north left crumbled.

In June, government officials in the Northern Province, called for private investments in many key areas including construction and healthcare, in order to improve the conditions in the former war areas.