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Public Statements

It's Time for Reconciliation in Sri Lanka

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. CHABOT. Mr. Speaker, May 18th marks the 4th anniversary of the end of a brutal 26 year civil war in Sri Lanka--a war which claimed tens of thousands of lives and cost the Sri Lankan economy billions of dollars.

Four years later, many in Sri Lanka still suffer from the lingering effects of that war. Many have not been able to return to their homes. Land mines are still being cleared, and minority Tamils have yet to be fully integrated into local affairs.

It is my hope, and the hope of most Sri Lankans, I believe, that political reconciliation can finally come to Sri Lanka and that the battle-scarred nation can enter a new era where former combatants live in harmony. But that reconciliation can only come if a legitimate mechanism for reconciliation and accountability is established. True reconciliation, Mr. Speaker, will come not from government edict but from the establishment of an equal justice system with full respect for the rule of law.

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