President Mahinda Rajapakse has been invited to take part in the celebrations of Queen Elizabeth II’s diamond jubilee.
Mr Rajapakse will travel to the UK on June 3 for a four-day visit, but according to sources in the British High Commission in Colombo it will not be a state visit and no meetings with British government officials have yet been confirmed.
British Tamils have expressed regret the decision to invite the president to the UK.
Speaking to TamilNet, Arujuna Sivananthan of the British Tamil Conservatives said,
“Her Majesty has led an exemplary life binding together various communities not just in the United Kingdom but the the world. As Conservatives committed to the principle of individual liberty, we do not wish the celebration of her six decade reign tarnished by the presence of individuals alleged to have committed war crimes and crimes against humanity.”
Mr Rajapakse’s last visit to the UK was met by large scale demonstrations, which led to his address at the Oxford Union to be cancelled.