‘Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora members want to return’

While there might be some pro-LTTE elements among the diaspora, there are many persons who are very moderate, says SLFP leader Rajitha Senaratne.

A “very big majority” of the Sri Lankan Tamil diaspora has been against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The community is eager to return to the country “as early as possible,” Rajitha Senaratne, Cabinet spokesperson and the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP)’s senior leader, said on Thursday.

Responding to questions on the recent dialogue between the Global Tamil Forum and the Tamil National Alliance in London in which Foreign Minister Mangala Samaraweera was also present, Dr. Senaratne said that while there might be some pro-LTTE elements among the diaspora, he knew from his interactions that there were many persons “who are very moderate.”

gtf logoWilling to invest

Pointing out that many of them were approaching the age of retirement, he said their desire was to come back to Sri Lanka; invest in the country and reconstruct their homes.

Denying reports in sections of the print media that President Maithripala Sirisena told Tamil Progressive Alliance leader Mano Ganesan that the dissolution of Parliament would take place sooner than expected, the Cabinet spokesperson said the priority of the government was to get the 20th Constitutional Amendment Bill on electoral reforms get passed.

Asked about the formation of a six-member committee in the SLFP to bring together Mr. Sirisena and former President Mahinda Rajapaksa, the SLFP leader claimed that the President had made it clear that he was not for making Mr. Rajapaksa the party’s prime ministerial candidate.

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With newfound peace and a stable leadership, the island nation offers lucrative business opportunities to Indian firms

Even after the end of Sri Lanka’s civil war in 2009, the island nation remained an international outsider, with the then-President Mahinda Rajapaksa not enjoying the best of relations with the West and India. Under Rajapaksa’s regime, India-Sri Lanka relations were strained due to issues such as Sri Lanka’s inaction to accord equal rights to the Tamil minority and the country’s growing proximity to China.

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