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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 107

Sri Lanka to press today UNESCO DG to retract statement on Voice of Tigers

Paris, 06 November, ( Sri Lanka's Ambassador in France and Permanent Delegate to the UNESCO, Chitranganee Wagiswara is expected to meet UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura today in Paris to demand on behalf of Government of Sri Lanka, an apology as well as retraction of the press statement condemning the air strike on the Voice of Tigers (VoT) radio station of the LTTE by the Sri Lanka Air force on 27 November.

Asian Tribune when contacted the office of the UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura in Paris, his Personal Assistant Ms. Carol Homely confirmed that Koichiro Matsuura has scheduled to meet today Sri Lanka’s Ambassador Chitranganee Wagiswara.

Ms. Carol Homely told Asian Tribune that yesterday UNESCO Director General was out of office and he was unable to meet with the Sri Lanka delegation which went to the UNESCO office to protest against the press statement released by him.

When Asian Tribune asked whether UNESCO Director General consulted with the Sri Lanka Embassy in Paris before releasing the statement, Ms. Carol Homely said, “most probably no” and indicated that the encounter between the Sri Lanka Ambassador and UNESCO chief Koichiro Matsuura is scheduled for today.

It is learnt that Sri Lanka has already demanded the retraction of the UNESCO Director General Koichiro Matsuura’s statement, in which he has "condemned" the air strike on the Voice of Tigers (VoT)m the clandestine radio station of the LTTE.

Sri Lanka's Ambassador Chitranganee Wagiswara and Minister Counsellor Sugeeswara Senadhira met the UNESCO Deputy Head Marcel Barboosa and DG’s spokesperson Muriel de Pierreboug at the UNSCO headquarters in Paris on Tuesday to lodge a protest. Mr Matsuura was out of France on Tuesday.

A letter of protest from the Government of Sri Lanka, addressed to the Director General of UNESCO was handed over at the meeting.

A press release issued by the Sri Lanka Embassy in Paris said that in the protest letter, Ambassador Wageeswara noted that the Government was surprised that the UNESCO saw it fit to issue such a statement on an attack on a clandestine radio station directly operated by the LTTE, a well known terrorist organisation, which is proscribed in a number of countries including India, US, Canada as well as the member states of European Union.

It adds that only two days before the UNESCO statement, the LTTE exploded a bomb in the Colombo suburbs killing 19 innocent civilians including women and children and that earlier the same day an LTTE female suicide cadre made a failed attempt to assassinate a Cabinet Minister who belongs to the Tamil community.

The letter notes that VoT is neither legal nor legitimate and its programme content promotes and glorifies terrorism and hence it cannot be considered as a "civilian radio station".

- Asian Tribune -

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