Trade Chambers welcome APC
Sri Lanka’s top chambers welcomed President Mahinda Rajapakse’s
initiative to launch all-party talks, saying confidence building
measures – in addition to the peace talks – were also
important for the peace process.
groups also urged the President to convene peace talks immediately
and halt the cycle of violence. President of the Federation of Chambers
of Commerce and Industry (FCCISL), Nawaz Rajabdeen praised Thursday’s
all party conference called by Mr. Rajapakse saying confidence building
measures for all stakeholders were as important as the resumption
of peace talks.
“Building confidence amongst stakeholders is even more important
than the resumption of talks,” he said adding that the UNP
and its leadership should also be praised for taking part in the
Ceylon Chamber of Commerce (CCC) commended the Government for its
restraint in upholding the ceasefire agreement in the face of the
killing and maiming of soldiers not engaged in combat. It said the
President is looking at developing a southern consensus as it is
vital to speak with one voice, negotiate with the LTTE and offer
a solution that will be endorsed by the people.The CCC said the
Government has reaffirmed the Norwegian government as peace facilitator
and the President has publicly invited the LTTE to negotiations
on numerous occasions.
the selection of the venue for talks, the Government has proposed
or agreed to no less than five options to meet the LTTE’s
preference for a venue acceptable to it.”
said maximum devolution of power based on the Indian model, which
is not constrained by definitions of a united or unitary state (as
Sri Lanka is in terms of the present Constitution), has been proposed.
the Joint Business Forum, also praised the Government’s restraint
but said it was the State that needs to make the first move in getting
peace talks off the ground.