Statement of the Government of Japan on the Tokyo Conference on Reconstruction and Development of Sri Lanka

May 23, 2003

  1. The Government of Japan, as the host country and one of the co-chairs of the Tokyo Conference on Reconstruction and Development of Sri Lanka scheduled on 9-10 June, is concerned over the recent developments regarding the LTTE's participation in the Tokyo Conference, especially the latest stance reported to have been expressed by the LTTE at the press conference held on May 22.

  2. The Tokyo Conference is intended to provide an unprecedented and unique opportunity, in which the international community would express its unified and strong commitment to reconstruction and development of the entirety of Sri Lanka, particularly of the war-torn North and East. Thanks to the laborious efforts by the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the UN System, the preparations for the Tokyo Conference have already reached the final stage.

  3. In light of these circumstances as well as the acute needs of assistance to Sri Lanka, especially to the people in the war-torn areas of the North and East, the Government of Japan is of the view that the Tokyo Conference should be held as scheduled. If the Conference were not held as scheduled, it may mean an irreparable loss to the long suffering people of Sri Lanka.

  4. The Government of Japan, therefore, urges the LTTE to make its utmost efforts to reach an acceptable agreement urgently with the Government of Sri Lanka on some of the outstanding issues before the Tokyo Conference with a view to resolving other remaining issues later with fresh momentum generated at the Tokyo Conference.

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