President Maithripala Sirisena said there is an imperative need to have a new approach to the “Tamil Diaspora”. He further added that many of them want to contribute to the country’s development.
President Maithripala made these comments in his meeting with the newspaper editors and media heads at the Presidential Palace today (March 18).
The President met several Tamil groups during his recent visit to the United Kingdom, who said that they insisted that they should not be labelled as the ‘Tamil Diaspora’ that is opposed to Sri Lanka.
“These people said that they wanted to return to Sri Lanka to contribute and participate in the country’s development. They were emphatic in stating their opposition to Eelam and their desire to assist in resolving the problems in the country,” President Maithripala said today’s meeting.
“At the same time few hundreds of Tamil Diaspora members demonstrated protesting at my visit. Though I acknowledged them with a wave, I did not want to engage with them,” he further added.
During my visits abroad and since my discussions with leaders visiting Sri Lanka since my election, one thing I noticed was the magnitude of the challenges we are faced with internationally. We have to face this challenge. We have to settle our internal issues. For that a National Government is essential as then we can work out an acceptable solution,” President Maithripala said.
“We should accept the presence of diverse opinions on this matter. We must find ways to reach a majority consensus to solve this issue if we want to ensure that there will not be another war in our lifetime. The media too have an important role in this and they should take this into serious consideration,” the President said.