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Issues faced by Tamils discussed in meetings between TNA and Cyril Ramaphosa

The South African deputy president and special envoy to Sri Lanka, Cyril Ramaphosa, discussed with the Chief Minister of the Northern Province, CV Wigneswaran, issues faced by Tamils in the Northeast, during a meeting in Jaffna on Tuesday, reported the Colombo Gazette.

Ramaphosa also met with Tamil National Alliance MPs in Colombo, where the party outlined the post war situation in the Northeast, highlighting continuing land grabs by the Sri Lankan military.

The TNA told the envoy that the landgrabs have to be stopped immediately, as the first step towards reconciliation.

Speaking to the Asian Mirror, spokesperson Suresh Premachandran said that the Sri Lankan government should first return the land that the army has occupied.

"The main livelihood of the people in North East is farming. But after the war Sri Lankan army has occupied this land preventing them from resettling in. Before talking about 'reconciliation' there should be a 're-establishment' for the thousands affected by war", he said.

Premachandran added that the envoy has agreed to provide assistance towards a political settlement.

Ramaphosa also held discussion with President Mahinda Rajapaksa and opposition leader Ranil Wickramasinghe on Monday, in addition to a meeting with a government delegation led by External Affairs Minister G.L. Peiris, including ministers Nimal Siripala de Silva and Rauff Hakeem.

“The meeting between President Rajapaksa and Mr. Ramaphosa were one on one and dinner followed,” Presidential Spokesman Mohan Samaranayake told the Daily FT, adding that the discussions were private.