Terrorism Update
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Sri Lanka Government

Press release
Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
Sri Lanka
Sri Lanka appreciates necessity for US military action

"Sri Lanka, a country that has for over 20 years with hardly any assistance from the international community, borne the brunt of particularly vicious bouts of terrorism, including frequent massacres of innocent civilians, assassinations of elected leaders by suicide bombers and attacks on economic and religious targets, strongly deplored and condemned the terrorist attacks in the United States on 11th September and welcome the resolve of the Government of the United States, the UN Security Council and a large number of other states, to root out terrorism wherever it may exist. The Government and people of Sri Lanka believe that all terrorist attacks irrespective of their scale are attacks on humanity and the basic values shared by all the religious faiths that have enriched human civilisation.

Sri Lanka has offered and reiterates its offer to render to the US Government all possible assistance to pursue and bring to justice the perpetrators of the heinous acts committed in the United States on 11th September. Sri Lanka appreciates the necessity for military action against targets in Afghanistan carefully selected on the basis of available evidence and welcome the statements made by the US Government that the action is not directed against the people of Afghanistan. It hopes that every effort will continue to be made to avoid civilian casualties and provide maximum humanitarian assistance for the people of Afghanistan who have for so long suffered so much hardship and deprivation due to the ravages of war and the misguided philosophy of the ruling Taliban Movement."

October 10, 2001

Source: Daily News, Colombo, October 11, 2001


Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sri Lanka,
Following the September 11-terrorist attacks in the United States
September 24, 2001

The terrorist attacks, which were witnessed on 11 September 2001 in New York and in Washington are unparalleled and constitute an attack on the international community as a whole.

As the world knows, Sri Lanka has suffered vicious terrorist attacks for over 20 years at the hands of one of the deadliest terrorist organisations operating in the world the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The chronicle of their terroristic activities need not be repeated.

The message of President Kumaratunga to President Bush of the United States extending the condolences of the Government and the people of Sri Lanka stressed the paramount necessity for concerted action by the international community for the suppression of the forces of terrorism. Sri Lanka has over the years consistently cautioned the international community at various international fora of the dangers that lay ahead, if the democratic countries did not unite to fight terrorism, collectively.

The recent events demonstrate beyond any question the need for the universal interdiction of the international financing network of terrorist groups on which international terrorism depends. Fundraising activities on foreign soil, be it directly or indirectly, through so-called charitable funds must be effectively countered.

It is vital that the United Nations continues to play a central role in devising collective measures and ensuring the effective implementation of relevant international instruments, in particular, the International Convention on the Financing of Terrorism, which should be brought into force at the earliest.

Sri Lanka, which is playing an active role in the UN Ad-Hoc Committee on the Elimination of International Terrorism as its present Chairman, will continue to work together with all member States at the current session of the UN General Assembly in devising a comprehensive international legal framework to ensure that perpetrators of terrorism do not find safe haven in any part of the world and are brought to justice.

The international community needs to be aware of the global network and the linkages amongst terrorist groups which facilitate the carrying out of their campaigns of terror. Concerted, cooperative efforts by all States are imperative in dismantling these linkages. In response to a request from the US Government for assistance the context of the recent terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the Government of Sri Lanka has already indicated to the US State Department its unhesitating willingness to extend to the US Government all such assistance as may be requested to combat terrorism. The specific modalities of such assistance will be worked out through mutual consultations.

24th September 2001

Message from Lakshman Kadirgamar,
Minister of Foreign Affairs,
Sri Lanka to
Colin Powell, United States Secretary of State
Following the September 11-terrorist attacks in the United States

"I am profoundly shocked by the horrendous terrorist attacks and the consequent loss of life, injury and destruction of property in New York and Washington. I offer to you my deepest sympathies on this tragic loss."

"I was particularly distressed to learn of the bomb attack outside the State Department. My colleagues at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs join me in conveying to you our deep concern for the safety of you and all your colleagues at the State Department."

"Acts of terrorism cannot be condoned under any circumstances whatsoever. We condemn in the strongest possible terms these acts of wanton destruction, which cannot be tolerated by civilised society. The time has come for the international community to close ranks and to take practical and meaningful action to eradicate terrorism."

"Sri Lanka as always stands ready to work closely with the United States and the rest of the international community towards the realisation of this objective."

Lakshman Kadirgamar P.C M.P.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
September 11, 2001

Message from Chandrika Kumaratunga, President, Sri Lanka
to US President George W. Bush Jr.
Following the September 11-terrorist attacks in the United States

We have watched with horror the unfolding scenes of devastation in New York and in Washington. I am deeply shocked and dismayed at the unprecedented scale of the attacks on the World Trade Centre, the Pentagon and other targets in the United States resulting in massive loss of innocent life, injury and widespread destruction of property.

The Government and the people of Sri Lanka join me in unreservedly condemning this dastardly attack. We offer our heartfelt condolences to the people of the United States of America, in particular to the people of New York and the families affected by this national calamity.

We, in Sri Lanka, having often experienced terrorist attacks, most recently when our only international airport was attacked, fully comprehend the despair of the people of the United States and share their anguish.

These attacks once again highlight the paramount necessity for concerted action by the international community for the suppression of terrorism. We should redouble our efforts in combating this menace. Sri Lanka stands fully committed to support all international initiatives in pursuit of this objective.

Chandrika Bandaranaike Kumaratunga
President of Sri Lanka
11th September 2001

Message from Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka,
Prime Minister, Sri Lanka to
United States President George W. Bush Jr.
Following the September 11-terrorist attacks in the United States

I, who unhesitatingly condemn the cowardly terrorist attack on American citizens and establishments, express my wholehearted sympathies to the American people and to President George W. Bush and extend my deepest condolences to the bereaved family members of the victims. This is not merely an attack on American citizens. In my view, it is a most deplorable strike on all humanity. No one or nothing can justify this type of barbarism. The thoughts of the people of Sri Lanka as well as of mine, are at this moment with the people of America.

I am convinced more than ever that all governments and peoples must unite to eradicate this scourge of terrorism, which respects no boundaries, nor states large or small. The perpetrators of such acts should be thoroughly and mercilessly investigated and brought to justice.

Ratnasiri Wickramanayaka
Prime Minister of Sri Lanka
September 11, 2001





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