COLOMBO, May 29 (Xinhua) — The Sri Lankan government on Thursday dismissed fears that the new Indian government under BJP leader and Prime Minister Narendra Modi could work against Sri Lankan interests.
Government Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said that the recent meeting between President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Modi further strengthened ties between the two countries. “There were reports that we will face issues with a BJP government. They said it will not be like things were under the Congress. Some said our government will be removed. But the first meeting between the president and Modi was very successful,” the Minister said.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa met Modi a day after Modi was sworn- in as the new Indian prime minister this week and discussed several issues including the 13th Amendment and the fishermen issue.
Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva said that President Mahinda Rajapaksa had conveyed to Modi Sri Lanka’s stand on some of the issues and also gave an ear to what Modi had to say.
“We will look at addressing any issue through discussions and not through confrontational politics,” Minister de Silva said at a press briefing.
He also expressed confidence in India’s new External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, saying she is well aware of the developments in Sri Lanka as she visited the country as the opposition leader following the end of the war.
Sri Lanka defeated the rebels in May 2009 after 30 years of war but has been accused by some groups including political parties in South India of committing grave human rights abuses during the final stages of the war.