COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena has said that the message of ethnic reconciliation should be conveyed to the majority Sinhalese community first.
“The message of the importance of reconciliation should be delivered to the Sinhala Buddhists in the South, than to those living in the North,” the President told The Sunday Times.
The Sinhalese live predominantly in South Lanka and the Tamils live largely in the North.
Referring to the importance given to “war victory” by Sinhalese Buddhists in South Lanka, Sirisena said that they should now turn their attention to reconciliation to prevent another war.
“ In victory we should taken into consideration the reasons which led to the war. If the youth in the North take up arms again, it is a defeat for the country. We should stop it. To do that, we should resolve their issues. Reconciliation should be strengthened,” he said.
“National unity must be strengthened. Those who work against this are “jaathi drohiyo” (traitors). If they work against this we consider them “anthavaadin” (extremists). There are extremists both in the South and North. There are extremists outside as well. They try to interrupt or scuttle this program. We will deal with them firmly.”