(May 20, Colombo, Sri Lanka Guardian) Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama has welcomed the official reaction by the Government of the Russian Federation to the historic victory achieved by the Sri Lankan security forces against LTTE terrorists, resulting in the restoration of Government control over the entire territory of the country and the freeing of civilians held as human shields by the LTTE.
The Minister pointed out that the Statement issued by the Russian Foreign Ministry reflects the invaluable support of the Russian Federation for Sri Lanka’s counter-terrorism measures, both in the bilateral context, as well as at regional and international fora. He underscored the sincere appreciation of the Government and the people of Sri Lanka for Russia’s consistent stand in upholding Sri Lanka’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Minister Bogollagama also noted that the sentiments expressed in the Russian Statement underline the strength and vitality of the abiding friendship between the two countries, based on mutual trust and goodwill.
The full text of the Statement of the Russian Foreign Ministry issued on 19 May 2009 is as follows:
Statement by Russian MFA Spokesman Andrei Nesterenko in Connection with Completion of Antiterrorist Operation in Sri Lanka
Moscow welcomes reports of the completion by Sri Lankan authorities of their operation against the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) extremist organization, resulting in government forces restoring control over the entire territory of the country and freeing civilians held by LTTE as a "human shield."
The Russian side supports the fight of the Sri Lankan government against terrorism and separatism and for state sovereignty and territorial integrity. We hope that the end to the bloody armed conflict that lasted in Sri Lanka for more than a quarter century will be a guarantee of the establishment of an enduring peace, security and stability in the country.
Moscow wishes the government and people of friendly Sri Lanka success in rapidly overcoming the consequences of the conflict and in achieving economic and social progress based on consensus among and respect for the rights of all the ethnic and religious groups inhabiting it.
Russia reiterates its readiness to strengthen further its cooperation with Sri Lanka both in a bilateral format and in regional and international organizations on counterterrorism and on other themes of mutual concern.