By Colombo Telegraph –
“Akashi agreed that the All Parties process is a “slender hope that should not be discounted” and urged the Co-Chairs to press President Rajapaksa to use all his energies to bolster the process and sell its final proposal. Akashi said the international community should not try to isolate Rajapaksa, but rather capitalize on whatever positive actions emerge. Although Akashi felt All Parties Chairman Vitarana may be overconfident about the All Parties process, Vitarana is also highly competent. If and when the All Parties reach a consensus, the Co-Chairs should press Rajapaksa to push the package through parliament and a referendum quickly.” the US Embassy Oslo informed Washington.
A Leaked “CONFIDENTIAL” US diplomatic cable, dated July 24, 2007, recounts the details of a meeting the representatives of the Sri Lanka Co-Chairs (United States, European Union, Japan, and Norway) had in Oslo on June 29,2007 to discuss the developments in Sri Lanka.The Colombo Telegraph found the related leaked cable from the WikiLeaks database which is classified by DCM Kevin M. Johnson.
“Japanese Special Representative Yasushi Akashi led the discussion on development assistance. The largest aid donor to Sri Lanka, Japan reported that total aid flows to Sri Lanka fell from $1.6 billion in 2005 to $1.5 billion in 2006 (reflecting a decrease in tsunami recovery assistance). The Japanese also revealed that because all of their longstanding aid in concessionary yen loans, the value of Sri Lankan repayments on such loans exceeds the value of the new money Japan is allocating. The Co-Chair participants agreed that external humanitarian assistance to the civilian population should continue. However, development assistance for the east should await an improvement in the security situation in the East and improved access for international non-governmental organizations. Co-Chairs and other donors must also press for improved humanitarian access to the Vanni region. Several participants expressed concern that the Government equates aid with support for its policies. The EU noted that it plans to increase aid, channeled through the government, conditioned on the improvement of the political situation. Norway suggested engaging China in aid discussions. The EU suggested such a dialogue be conducted in Brussels where recent engagement with China on Africa has proved productive.” the US embassy Oslo further wrote.
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