Source Pravda.Ru

Sri Lankan military commander says country not to return to war

Sri Lanka military commander here Friday said the country was not likely to return to war despite last week attack by Tamil tigers against security forces in the Northern Jaffna peninsula. The Chief of Defense Staff Daya Sandagiri told reporters "we are ready for war but we do not see it is happening." Sandagiri accompanied by the Army Chief Sarath Fonseka, Air Force Chief Donald Perera and the Police Chief Chandra Fernando said Sri Lanka's security forces have the capabilities to face any threat from the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eeelam .

The tigers on Dec. 4 and Dec. 6 killed some 15 soldiers of the Sri Lankan army through to separate claymore mine attack in Jaffna. The attacks despite the ongoing ceasefire have raised fears of resumption of hostility for the first time since February 2002. The Air Force Commander Donald Perera said the tiger have acquired air capability with two aircraft but he was confident of facing any tiger threats.

All commanders agree that the two attacked will not lead to war. The LTTE rebels had been fighting against government forces to set up an independent Tamil homeland in the north and east since 1983 until they entered into a Norwegian-brokered peace process in February 2002.

Peace talks between the government and the LTTE aimed at ending the island nation's two-decade civil war, which killed over 64,000 people, stalled in April 2003 after six rounds of talks started in September 2002. The peace talks was deadlock over the demand by the LTTE rebels for the setting up of an interim power structure for the war-torn north and east of the country, reports Xinhua. I.L.

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