Mr. Deputy Speaker, in speaking on this Motion I should perhaps start by saying that I do not think the way it has been put quite expresses the enormous relief in this country at having got rid of the need for Emergency Regulations, in fact at the removal of an Emergency situation in Sri Lanka. This has happened after a very long time. Even though in the past forty years we have sometimes had brief alleviation of the Emergency Regulations, we knew that the Emergency situation still continued, and very soon the Regulations were reintroduced.

So the fact that this Emergency is now lifted for good is a most welcome. But I also think it is important for us to remember the need to make sure that terrorism does not arise again. It is for that reason that, unfortunately or otherwise, certain regulations have been reintroduced under the Prevention of Terrorism Act. However, I agree with the last speaker from Jaffna who mentioned that we all hope the Prevention of Terrorism Act will also be lifted soon. We cannot forget the genesis of that Act in 1979, which was unfortunate. It was accompanied by excesses of the part of the then Government, which led to an increase of terrorism rather than a reduction. I think it is important therefore that, in our usage of the Act, we make sure that it prevents and does not exacerbate tensions, it prevents terrorism and does not allow it to expand

However, having said that, I think we need to remember that for the future there is a need for greater regulations, given the rise of terrorism worldwide. In the West you have things like the Homeland Security Act. We need to rethink our whole security situation and make sure that laws are introduced that are justiciable but that still make very clear the need to guard against modern methods of terrorism.

Recalling the speech of the Hon. Member of the Opposition from Jaffna, we need also to keep in mind the fact that in a context of uncertainty it is important that we, all of us together, try to build up the situation of trust that the last speaker just mentioned. I have never made any secret of the fact that I think the Prevention of Terrorism Act was introduced wrongly in 1979, it was applied wrongly, and the then Government of President J.R. Jayewardene exacerbated the terrorist situation which could have been dealt with much better, if only President Jayewardene acted in the way the present President is acting, by assuring better development not only of infrastructure but of opportunities to all citizens in all parts of the country. Instead, he just used a heavy hand without trying to develop the country and without allowing the people of that region to participate in the development process as this Government is trying to do. But I think we should also remember that some of the politicians of those days, unfortunately the Members of TULF, were not tough enough about the burgeoning terrorist movement of the time. You have to remember that in those days Tamil policemen, Tamil politicians were ruthlessly shot in Jaffna, and while I am sure the present Membership of the TNA would absolutely abhors such actions they should not be frightened to say so. It was partly because of the fears, perhaps not justified, that the Tamil politicians at that time were encouraging terrorist movements that the state at that stage reacted in what I think was a very heavy handed fashion.

I think it is vital that in the future we do not make that same mistake. Therefore, I think it is particularly important that people like the Hon. Member who just spoke, who has at his disposal a newspaper, uses that to raise issues rather than making threats of further terrorism which I am afraid some politicians occasionally use. I think it is very important that everybody abjures the use of terrorism so that we on the side of the Government can very quickly alleviate all the extreme measures that had to be introduced, if we are to prevent the tragedy of the last 20 years hitting this country again.  Thank you Mr. Deputy Speaker.

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