Friday, February 27, 2009

Re-double our efforts to combat the menace of terrorism individually and collectively – Sri Lanka President

Colombo, 27 February, ( "We, in the region of South Asia, today face several common challenges. Common challenges require collective responses. Terrorism is such a challenge and it requires our immediate and united attention due to the impact it has on all of us, in one way or another" said President Mahinda Rajapaksa addressing the SAARC Foreign Ministers Conference in Colombo today.

President Rajapaksa in his address to the SAARC Foreign Ministers in Colombo, today - 27 February Contunued to say, "Our societies bear the brunt of the evil force of terrorism. But, we cannot and should not allow even a single citizen of South Asia to suffer as a result of the brutal violence un-leashed by terrorists. Therefore, we need to re-double our efforts to combat this menace individually and collectively. We cannot shy away from taking firm and forceful action to combat terrorism, including internationally. We, among other measures, should uphold democracy, support each other’s democracies and make it a vehicle towards defeating terrorism.

"In this regard, I recognise that in the SAARC region, and in multi-lateral fora like the United Nations, we have agreed on a series of measures as to how to combat terrorism in line with accepted universal values and standards. The time has come to re-dedicate ourselves to fully implement such agreed measures. We must not hesitate to go further towards taking innovative action in combating terrorism to make our societies, our cities, and our villages safe for our people to live in. Our rich cultures cannot be allowed to be riddled by the curse of terrorism. I hope this ministerial meeting will be able to give further direction on this important current issue for people in this region.

On the global financial melt down, President Rajapaksa said: "The depression in the commodity market is adversely affecting most of us, even negating the gains resulting from the declining oil prices. Trade flows, production lines and the service sector are suffering from the domino effect of this crisis and there are looming liquidity problems.

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