Unless long-term reconciliation is achieved the problem will come back at some stage to haunt everyone in Sri Lanka, Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East and North Africa Alistair Burt has said recently. Speaking at the UK parliamentary debate on “Sri Lanka and the UN responsibility to protect” last week Burt said,  there is more to be done to ensure that there is lasting peace and prosperity. “Addressing the progress of the implementation of recommendations of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC) the Foreign Minister said he will be visiting Sri Lanka in a “couple of weeks” to see if Sri Lanka will consider implementing all the LLRC recommendations and how they will be implemented. Responding to the suggestions by some parliamentarians that UK should boycott the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) to be held in Sri Lanka in November, Burt said it is too soon to talk about UK’s attendance plans for the meeting. He noted that Sri Lanka was scheduled to host CHOGM in 2011, but given ongoing concerns about the humanitarian and human rights situation, the UK and other Commonwealth members did not support its bid. “We expect the Sri Lankan Government to demonstrate that they uphold the values of the Commonwealth,” he emphasized. Dismissing the suggestion by some MPs in the debate that UK should not let the Queen attend the Commonwealth meeting, the British minister clarified that the Queen, will attend the meeting as the head of the Commonwealth, not as the UK head of state. “Her attendance is not a decision for the UK Government. If she were to ask for advice, it would be from all Commonwealth members,” he said. Recognizing that process of reconciliation following the resolution of the conflict is not easy, the British Minister said, unless long-term reconciliation is achieved the problem will come back at some stage to haunt everyone in Sri Lanka.]]>

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