Last week Amnesty International called on the UN to address the growing violence in Sri Lanka.
Unlawful killings, abductions and enforced disappearances of civilians are daily occurrences in Sri Lanka. Several hundred cases of enforced disappearances and several hundred unlawful killings have been registered in the first six months of 2007. Amnesty International is also concerned about a rising incidence of killings of journalists by unidentified armed men, and tightened restrictions on freedom of expression. The organization today called on members of the Human Rights Council to seek opportunities during its Sixth session to take action to address the rapidly deteriorating situation in the country.
Norwegian Development Aid Minister Erik Solheim told foreign correspondents at a briefing in the Norwegian capital on Tuesday that Norway was ready to help negotiate a peace deal.
Solheim said he may meet Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa in "the near future" to see if there were any peace initiatives that could be pursued.
He said direct contacts with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) had been rare recently because of the war. "But we are talking to them on the phone all the time."
The following is from Tamil-Elam News Services.
Tamils Urges Norway to Stop the Ethnic Cleansing in Sri Lanka
Oslo - Hundreds of Norwegian Tamils gathered in front of the Norwegian Foreign Ministry building to protest the Sri Lanka Minister of Human Rights Mahinda Samarasinghe with Norway Foreign Ministry Officials.
On behalf of the Tamils in Norway, Norwegian Tamils Federation (NTF) submitted a memorandum to Mr. Eric Solheim, Norwegian Minister for International Development and Jonas Gahr Støre, Minister of Foreign affairs. The memorandum urges the Norway to exert pressure on the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) to immediately stop the ethnic cleansing of Tamils in Sri Lanka.
Norwegian Special Envoy to Sri Lanka Peace Process, Jon Hanssen Bauer addressed the demonstrators before receiving a memorandum from the protesters and said Norway not in a position to influence Sri Lankan government.
The demonstrators, also urged Norway to stop providing any financial aid to Sri Lanka. Tamils consider the Norwegian aid given to Sri Lanka is being used to kill their own people, the appeal said.
Under the terms of the Norwegian-brokered and internationally backed accord, both parties pledged to refrain from engaging in any offensive military operations. But year 2006 and 2007 were marred by a bloody upsurge in violence throughout the island Nation with over 5,400 people killed including 44 aid workers and 10 journalists, close to 500,000 people internally displaced (IDP) while thousands of people were abducted and hundreds are missing in the north and east of Sri Lanka.
The Norwegian Tamils strongly feels that the Tamils has agreed to a ceasefire and the a peace process because of the international community's repeated call that they will support and help to achieve a peaceful solution to the national conflict in Sri Lanka. But, the current government in Sri Lanka closed all door for peace and perusing a military option defying all the International will.