Department of Government Information, Sri Lanka
The government has already relaxed several Emergency Regulations and certain regulations are still required to ensure peace and harmony in the country.
However, the International Groups and the local politicians who demand for relaxation of emergency regulations were silent about violation of human rights by the terrorist outfit LTTE, when they terrorized the innocent people of the country, when they denied human rights to people living in areas which were under their control, and when they denied human rights to the academics living in that area. He said that the behavior of International groups in the activities of certain countries were totally different from what they did in the case of Sri Lanka when the terrorist outfit LTTE was making blatant and gross violation of human rights in this country.
This was stated by the Minister of Environment Mr. Anura Priyadarshana Yapa in response to questions raised by media personnel at the end of the Media Conference held today at the Department of Government Information to announce Cabinet Decisions taken yesterday.
He said that the baseless allegations being made by these groups about human rights violations in the country cannot be accepted. He pointed out that the people of this country can now freely enjoy their life in any part of this country, whether it is North, East, South or West and the value and the strength of this freedom will be more evident in the forthcoming New Year season which will be celebrated in all parts of the country.
The Minister further said that Sri Lanka has not done anything contrary to the international law and everything is being done to safeguard the sovereignty of this country. He said that the country has its own laws and regulations and neither these laws and regulations nor the international laws have been violated at any time.
Referring to a question on a statement that had been made by Mrs. Sonia Gandhi on Sri Lanka, the Minister said that she has made this statement at an Election Rally, and the Ministry of External Affairs will take appropriate measures to obtain a clarification on this matter.
In response to a question about the incident that had taken place at the Peliyagoda Fish Market Complex, the Minister said that law and order agencies have taken appropriate measures on the incident, people involved in the incident have been taken into custody and legal action has been instituted. Minister Yapa strongly refuted the allegation of involvement of a Minister of the area and said that it is highly unethical to level such allegations merely because a Minister represents that area and just because a person taken into custody happened to be a politician.
Commenting on the threatened bus fare hike by the private bus owners, the Minister said that the Minister of Transport has already made a statement in the Parliament clarifying that there is no justification for a price hike, and it cannot be allowed. (niz)