In Ukraine, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said “Problems can only be resolved through the will of the people instead of external intervention.” In earlier remarks, he had said “By defeating the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), one of the most ruthless terrorist organizations in the world by launching a humanitarian operation, we have set an example for the world.” This reference to ‘the will of the people’ regards his governments preference that a locally appointed commission investigate the end of Sri Lanka’s 30 year war. The government is opposed to the external UN Panel set up to advise Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and has denied them visas.
In the debate over local vs external, China and Russia are firmly on Sri Lanka’s side. The EU has supported the UN Panel and also withdrawn its GSP+ tax concession pending the satisfaction of 15 conditions, mostly regarding human rights. Locally, government spokesman Keheliya Rambukwella has said “We will not tolerate and infringement of our sovereignty” and Housing Minister has gone so far as to call for a siege of the UN compound, a move the government has disavowed.
On this issue, President Rajapaksa reiterated that he considered Ukraine and ally, closing by saying “President Rajapaksa also expressed his gratitude to the Ukrainian Government for the assistance extended to his country’s fight against terrorism.”