US asks warring Lankan parties to bolster truce

Agence France Presse

Colombo, June 27:

The United States today asked Sri Lanka’s government and Tamil Tiger rebels to strengthen a fragile truce between them after they entered into a controversial deal to share aid pledged after the tsunami.

“If implemented properly, this mechanism will help ensure efficient and equitable reconstruction assistance to those whose lives were devastated by the South Asia tsunami in the north and east of Sri Lanka,” the US said in a statement.

It said Washington hoped the experience the two sides will gain by working together would help build confidence and lead to progress in the broader peace process stalled since April 2003. “It is even more important now that the two parties take all possible steps to see that the ceasefire is observed and strengthened,” the statement said.