TNA Leader meets Belgium delegation | Sunday Observer

TNA Leader meets Belgium delegation

The Visiting Belgium-Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group met with the Leader of the Opposition and the Tamil National Alliance, R Sampanthan, on Wednesday (18), at the office of the Leader of the Opposition in Parliament.

Briefing the delegation, Sampanthan highlighted that the present Sri Lankan Constitution is not enacted based on consensus. The processes of enacting a new Constitution, recognizing the multi-ethnicity and pluralistic nature of this country has begun, he said.

He stressed that the new Constitution must be adopted before the end of this year, in order to take this country on a new journey, as the country is faced with a choice either to take the country forward or to drag it backwards.

Speaking on the reconciliation process, Sampanthan highlighted that the people are not happy as they do not receive prompt relief for their problems. He brought to the notice of the delegation, a number of issues faced by the Tamil people in the North and East. Highlighting the large extent of lands occupied by the armed forces, Sampanthan said, people have lived in these lands for generations and they want their lands back, but the progress in this regard has been slow.

On the issue of Missing Persons, Sampanthan said, people want to know what happened to their loved ones, and they cannot live in uncertainty forever. Although our people are staging protests for many months now, the progress made is not up to expectations.

Appreciating the EU’s role in the past Sampanthan appealed to the delegation to impress upon the government to take necessary steps to solve the issues faced by the people.

The delegation led by (Prof) Ms Petra De Sutter, Senator, President of the Belgium – Sri Lanka Parliamentary Friendship Group, comprised Members Ms Ozlem Ozen, Georges Dallemagne, Alain Destexhe Senator, Andries Gryffroy Senator, Marc Jolling, Secretary , Inter-Parliamentary Union Office in the Belgium Federal Parliament, and the Belgium Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Jan Luykx.