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Hon. Deputy Chairman of Committees, in supporting the extension of the State of Emergency for another month, I would like, if possible, to introduce some conceptual issues. I have not spoken on the state of Emergency for some time, and I was deeply sorry just now to hear that the speech of the Hon. Member from the Opposition simply repeated the mixture as before. It is very easy in an Emergency Debate to play snap and come out with atrocities and to come out with deficiencies that are perceived in the Government. Then, we can answer and point out that this Government has indeed succeeded in getting rid of terrorism within Sri Lanka to a great extent.

But I do not think we should continue to play snap about such important issues. I think we should consider instead the ways in which we can move forward, the ways in which we can finally get rid of an Emergency situation, the way in which we can get rid of the resentments and the suspicions that have dogged this country for well over 50 years.

In that respect, Mr. Deputy Chairman of Committees, I think the most important word that we need to stress and to develop is “confidence“.  I think we need to have confidence in each other. It is not going to be an easy process. There have been betrayals of confidence on many sides over the last 50 years and therefore we have to be particularly careful as we move forward towards trusting each other completely.

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Rajiva Wijesinha

August 2011
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