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PM placates Lanka, writes to Rajapaksa on UN vote
Ashok Tuteja/TNS

New Delhi, March 24
With sentiments running high against India in Colombo, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today wrote to Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa seeking to explain why India had supported the US-sponsored UN Human Right Council resolution against the island nation on 'war crimes.'

The Prime Minister told the Lankan leader that India had spared no effort and was successful in introducing an element of balance in the language of the resolution.

''I had instructed our delegation to remain in close contact with its Lankan counterparts in an attempt to find a positive way forward,'' he said amid apprehensions in New Delhi that Lanka would now start tilting heavily towards China, which had opposed the resolution, to make India somewhat uncomfortable.

Manmohan said India would continue its engagement with Lanka with the shared objective of building a stable, secure and prosperous environment in the island nation in which all communities can flourish and ties between the two nations can continue to grow from strength to strength.

The PM's letter is being seen as a conciliatory move by New Delhi, which voted against Lanka ostensibly due to pressure from political parties in Tamil Nadu. At the same time, however, there is a growing feeling in India that Sri Lanka had done little to provide succour to the Tamil community after the end of the prologned conflict.

Colombo has also not moved much on implementing the recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconcilation Commission (LLRC), set up after the conflict.

New Delhi apprehensive

The move comes amid apprehensions in New Delhi that Lanka would now start tilting heavily towards China, which had opposed the resolution, to make India somewhat uncomfortable.

India was successful in introducing an element of balance in the language of the resolution. New Delhi would continue its engagement with Lanka with the shared objective of building a stable environment in the island nation in which all communities can flourish. Manmohan Singh, PM

 

 

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