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Jaffna bishop hails gesture

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Efforts by the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government to provide relief to civilians caught in the warn-torn Sri Lanka have won appreciation from the bishop of Jaffna, Reverend Thomas Savundaranayagama, who toured relief camps and other areas where fighting is raging between the armed forces and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

In a letter to the Indian High Commissioner in Colombo, he wrote at length about the food assistance being provided by India, including the Tamil Nadu government, and conveyed his appreciation of the “beautiful humanitarian gesture.”

The bishop, who toured the areas around Kilinochchi and interacted with priests and others, spoke of the difficult living conditions and about how India’s food assistance reached most of the targeted families.

He reported seeing a convoy of lorries from Tamil Nadu carrying clothing for the internally displaced.

While calling for a political settlement of the ethnic issue on the island, New Delhi has consistently called upon Colombo to ensure the well being of civilians displaced by the conflict in the north and east. Subsequently, Sri Lanka allowed access to relief materials being sent by New Delhi and Chennai to the internally displaced.

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