Criticism against Sri Lanka should be constructive, President says

08:58, July 12, 2011      

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Sri Lanka said it is ready to accept criticism, but it should be constructive criticism which can be addressed and rectified.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa told a gathering Monday in the southern town of Galle Monday that the international community may raise allegations against the country but his government will not be deterred.

Sri Lanka is facing severe international criticism over the manner in which it handled the final stages of the war against Tamil Tiger rebels in May 2009.

The Sri Lankan president said his government is ready to face the challenges posed by the international community including the Sri Lankan minority Tamils who fled the war and are now living overseas.

"Some groups which left the country and went, some diaspora groups are trying to show a different picture about this country and are not talking about the freedom that we have gained," Rajapaksa said.

The Sri Lankan Tamil community mostly living in western countries have been calling for Rajapaksa to be tried for war crimes.

A panel appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had said in a report earlier this year that over 40,000 civilians were killed during the last stages of the fighting between the Sri Lankan military and the Tamil Tigers.

The report had also accused the Sri Lankan military and the Tamil Tiger rebels of committing war crimes during the final battle.

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