On political settlement that will go beyond the 13 Amendment to the Constitution of the Island Nation

Given Sri Lanka’s track record of reneging on earlier commitments, it remains to be seen whether the country will fulfil its promises made to National Security Adviser Shivshankar Menon during his recent visit to Sri Lanka, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam president M. Karunanidhi said on Thursday.

Referring to Mr. Menon’s assertion after his meeting with President Mahinda Rajapaksa that Colombo should fulfil its commitment to India and the international community regarding a political settlement that would go beyond the 13 Amendment to the Constitution of Sri Lanka, Mr. Karunanidhi expressed the hope that elections to the Northern Province would be held in an independent, fair and credible manner.

Though Sri Lanka had reportedly said that its forces would not indulge in attacks against fishermen from Tamil Nadu but would adopt a humane approach, its track record showed that it had consistently gone back on its promises. The promises made by leaders of Sri Lanka to Mr. Menon would be discussed at the forthcoming meeting of the Tamil Eelam Supporters’ Organisation to be held here on July 16, he said in a statement.

Mr. Karunanidhi reiterated his demand for firm action from the Centre to put an end to the frequent attacks on Tamil Nadu fishermen and their detention by the Sri Lankan Navy as the appeals made by political parties in the State, including the letters written by the Chief Minister, Jayalalithaa, to the Prime Minister, did not have any impact.

He suggested that the government could facilitate migration of Sri Lankan Tamil refugees to Australia, if they were confident of leading a better life Down Under. No purpose would be served by arresting and detaining them in prison whenever the refugees attempted to flee to Australia, he said. Condemning the serial blasts in Bodh Gaya, the former Chief Minister called for appropriate action against those responsible for it.

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