Cardijn Community International (CCI) welcomes with great relief the announcement by the government of Sri Lanka that the combat operations have been put on hold and that the security forces will confine their attempts to rescuing civilians and to provide rehabilitation. LTTE on its part had also announced cease fire preceding this announcement. It also hopes that this is not a temporary pause but will lead to a negotiated, peaceful settlement.
CCI takes this opportunity to thank the international community, heads of governments, the United Nations, international organizations, church and other religious and community leaders who had appealed for peace in Sri Lanka. CCI had appealed several times to the President of Sri Lanka for a cease fire and for UN’s intervention.
Every one is aware that the conflict in the island nation has thrown life out of gear for hundreds of thousands of people. Women, children and the elderly have suffered the most. What is urgently needed is immediate and proper medical care to the injured and the sick, food, clothing and shelter for the displaced and dispossessed people. It will take a long time before these people could overcome their mental and physical trauma of these people. The human dignity of the ethnic minority needs to be restored and communal harmony promoted in the island nation.
CCI while appreciating the cessation of hostilities, appeals to the government of Sri Lanka to take all possible steps to work out a permanent solution to the ethnic conflict acceptable to the parties concerned.
M. J. Ruben
International Convenor April 27, 2009