Colombo condemns the attack on its Embassy in Oslo; International pressure grows on both Colombo and LTTE to stop the fighting and allow civilians safe passage; Narayanan and Menon meet Rajapakse and convey Indian concerns about civilians
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  • The Sri Lankan government condemned the attacks on its embassy in Oslo. It brought to notice of the Norwegian government Article 22(2) of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of April 18, 1961, which obliges the State “to take all appropriate steps to protect the premises of the mission against any intrusion or damage and to prevent any disturbance of the peace of the mission or impairment of its dignity.” Colombo criticized the failure of the Norwegian government in fulfilling its obligations under international law and urged it to arrest the perpetrators immediately1.

    International pressure meanwhile grew on both Colombo and the LTTE to deal immediately with the thousands of trapped civilians in the conflict zone. Japan called on the LTTE to allow freedom of movement to the trapped civilians and urged the government to explore possibilities for a political process towards a permanent solution for the ethnic problem2. France on its part pledged to increase humanitarian aid in order to cater to the needs of the trapped civilians. Permanent Representative of France to the UN Jean-Maurice Ripert also called on the LTTE to join the political process3. The Sri Lankan government on its part stated that it would not surrender to international and domestic pressure to stop the ongoing military operations4.

    President Rajapakse meanwhile briefed the visiting NSA M.K. Narayanan and Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon on the ongoing operations. Reports noted that the Indian delegation expressed their concern about civilian welfare5.

    In other developments, Claude Heller, President of the UN Security Council termed the LTTE a terrorist organization which was using civilians as human shields. The Security Council however did not call for a ceasefire. The UNSC also urged the LTTE to give up arms, and stated that there was no military solution to the conflict6. Canada on its part announced that it would not bow down to any pressure regarding the decision to lift the ban on the LTTE. Canada had placed the LTTE on a list of banned terrorist organizations under the federal Anti-Terrorism Act, which prohibits the financing of such groups7.