The White House has reportedly rejected a request by Mahinda Rajapaksa, Sri Lankan president, to meet the US President Barack Obama or his officials when he was in the US to meet the Sri Lankan Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne who is in hospital, a Sri Lankan official told to the Eelam-e-news on condition of anonymity. However, Rajapaksa’s spokesman Mohan Samaranayake said that the visit to the United States is not official and so he will not be having discussions with the American government. He said that the Rajapaksa was in the US to meet Prime Minister D.M. Jayaratne who is in hospital and there were no official meetings scheduled with US government members, as it was a private visit. But there was speculation that Rajapaksa may have talks with the US government after he met Prime Minister Jayaratne in hospital, because his visit was the first top-level visit after the US presidential election. Rajapaksa has met US officials on each of his previous US trips as Sri Lankan leader since 2005. Relations between the US and Sri Lanka’s leadership have also been strained over human right issues and other issues, such as militarisation in north and Chinese relation. Last week, the United States said that it is pleased and proud of its accomplishments during its first term in the UN Human Rights Council, which includes the way it dealt with Sri Lanka. A US State Department release said that on Sri Lanka the United States led the Council in adopting a resolution, which sent a strong signal that Sri Lanka still needs to address outstanding issues of reconciliation and accountability.]]>

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