Australia to consider more assistance for Lankan IDP

Last Updated: Monday, November 30, 2009 - 17:27

Colombo: Expressing satisfaction over the
expeditious resettlement of the Tamil IDPs in Wanni, Australia
has assured Sri Lanka that it would consider more assistance.

"With the post conflict process now underway in Sri
Lanka, Australian Foreign Minister Stephen Smith agreed to
consider providing more assistance to Sri Lanka for the
ongoing resettlement and reconstruction programmes," Sri
Lankan Foreign Ministry said in a statement here.

This issue came up for a discussion when Sri Lankan
Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama had held a meeting with
his Australian counterpart Stephen Smith late last week on the
sidelines of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting
(CHOGM) in Port of Spain, it said.

"Australian Foreign Minister during the meeting stated
that he welcomed the early resettlement of the IDP from the
welfare villages and recent announcement regarding the freedom
of movement of those remaining IDP in the welfare villages,"
the statement said.

Recalling his recent visit to Sri Lanka, Smith has
said this had afforded him an opportunity to get first hand
experience about the positive development in the post conflict
phase, the statement said.

Smith also thanked the Government of Sri Lanka for its
support in minimising illegal migration from this country to
Australia. Referring excellent bilateral relations between Sri
Lanka and Australia, Bogollagama expressed confidence that
this relationship would further enhance in the years to come.

Meanwhile, during a meeting with his Canadian
counterpart Lawrence Cannon, Bogollagama has exchanged views
on assistance required with regard to reconstruction in the
post conflict phase in Sri Lanka.

Bogollagama has recalled with appreciation Cannon`s
visits during this year which he said had contributed to
bringing about greater understanding on the requirements for
the resettlement on the IDPs, the ministry statement said.

Referring to the large Sri Lankan Diaspora in Canada,
Cannon has said they play an important role in Canadian
political, economic, social and cultural spheres.

Bogollagama`s discussions with his two counterparts
also have centered on regional and international issues of
mutual concern, it said.
PTI



First Published: Monday, November 30, 2009 - 17:27

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