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Government not ready to bargain cease-fire Media Minister
[08 Jan 2001]

The government yesterday ruled out the possibility of a temporary suspension of security forces operations in north and east of Sri Lanka in response to the LTTE's 30-day unilateral cease-fire, beginning midnight Christmas day.

Addressing a cabinet press briefing in Colombo, Media and Information Minister Anura Priyadharshana Yapa yesterday said " there would not be a cease fire" as LTTE had already violated their so called temporary truce several times.

The ongoing military operations will continue stressed both the minister and the military spokesman Brigadier Sanath Karunaratne.

The government would consider LTTE's proposal for cease-fire only after the two parties enter into fresh round of negotiations, sources revealed.

Further Minister Yapa accused the LTTE of seeking a temporary cease-fire in a bid to regroup and energise their weakened military structure. 

The military spokesman revealed that the government forces had lost 1464 personnel killed in the last year, with 8520 being wounded.

Meanwhile LTTE had lost over 2433 cadres. This situation had pushed their organisation into a desperate situation. Currently they are running short of manpower to face the ongoing military operations.

The media minister further said that for an abhorrent group of terrorists like LTTE "can always lie low, bide their time, and attack even areas where there are civilians. But the government forces cannot do that."



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