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Mr. Kadirgarmer, You Have No Equals

Daya Rathnayaka, USA

Not surprisingly, we have heard recently some negative comments about Mr. Kadirgarmer, Sri Lanka's former foreign minister. However, leaving political differences aside, one may clearly agree with the view that Mr. Kadirgarmer is one of the greatest foreign ministers Sri Lanka ever produced. His honesty, dedication and skill definitely bear witness to this assertion.

Before his time some of our foreign ministers were truly foreign to our country. There was a period when foreign ministers chose to spend tax payers money practically to live abroad. One may still remember the sarcasticjoke that appeared in the front page of a certain news paper about Sri Lankan Foreign Minister's visit to Sri Lanka. One may unquestionably agree that Mr. Kadirgarmer was totally different from such real "foreign" ministers.

Mr Kadirgarmer was asked to serve his country as the foreign minister at a crucial time. When he became the foreign minister, Sri Lanka had one of the worst human right records, which the LTTE wisely utilized to get sympathy of the world, collect funds and arms justifying their ruthless terrorist acts in our country. Mr. Kadirgarmer's fearless and relentless fight against the terrorist's false propaganda restored the dignity our country deserves.

Many expatriates around world rallied around him and fought against the LTTE lies. These combined efforts resulted in banning the LTTE in the USA in 1997 and, subsequently in the other countries. As a result, now LTTE funding has dwindled and they find it difficult to re-organize and raise money to re-arm for their terrorist acts. Contrary to what the present Sri Lankan foreign minister has said, Mr. Kadirgarmer is not a so-called prisoner at all, nor is he a coward. Instead he is a bold and courageous person who risked his own life to serve the country.

We should not tolerate the recent baseless and shameless attacks leveled on the much committed and truly honored minister Kadirgarmer.

Unquestionably, he is one of the most genuine and talented Statesman Sri Lanka produced in recent times. He always presented only facts, and his presentation was in such a pleasant manner that even his enemy could listen. Contrary to Mr Fernado's comment, many world leaders are aware of Mr. Kadirgarmer's work, they appreciate his tireless and dedicated campaign against the terrorism, and regard him as a person with integrity.

I would not even dare to compare your efforts with our other foreign ministers since it would be an insult to you. Mr Fernado, seems to have lost his determination "not to talk" as he did back in the eighties as the deputy foreign minister. Mr Fernado visited New Zealand in 1983 / 1984 after the 1983 July incidents. A Tamil student wearing a facemask protested his arrival at an airport yelling "Stop Killing Tamils, Stop Killing Tamils". This was a well-planned protest that they had the TV crews videotaping the protest. That night, this was on TV news headlines.

A day or two later Mr Fernando visited Wellington, the Capitol of New Zealand. When Newspaper reporters tried to interview him, he had covered his face with his hands to the cameras and walked away.

I was very disappointed and embarrassed to face my Kiwi friends when I saw the front page of the newspaper that day with a black rectangle in place of our deputy foreign minister's photo and a statement -Sri Lankan Deputy Foreign minister came and left saying "No comment". He had a golden opportunity to defend the country against false propaganda. A person supposedly related to Weera Puran Appu would have taken the advantage of that opportunity. Now I consider that, by keeping silence, he did great that day without making yet another blunder !


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