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* Top ranking Indian delegation meets Sri Lanka President
Friday, April 24, 2009, 14:06 GMT, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Apr 24, Colombo: Visiting top ranking Indian officials comprising its Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon and India's National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan met with Sri Lanka President Mahinda Rajapaksa this afternoon to discuss the catastrophic situation in the Northeast of the country.

Presidential Media Unit said that the visiting Indian group and Sri Lanka President Rajapaksa discussed several issues today related to the country's ethnic conflict and ongoing war.

Reportedly the Indian officials have asked the Sri Lanka President to call a ceasefire, but it was not confirmed yet whether the President agreed.

However the Indian government has expressed their compliments to Sri Lanka over the successful rescue operation carried out by the government forces and its welfare process for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).

President Rajapaksa has also thanked the Indian government over the support given by them for the welfare programs of IDPs, Presidential Media Unit said.

Indian Minister of External Affairs Pranab Mukherjee yesterday expressed his concern over the continued Tamil civilian casualties due to the fighting between government forces and the Tigers and urged the two sides to immediately stop any killing of the civilians.

Indian High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, Alok Prasad, Sri Lanka's President's Secretary Lalith Weeratungaand and Sri Lanka's Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa also participated in the discussions. Indian delegation is to return to India this evening.

Picture by Chandana Perera

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