Krishna launches Northern Railway line in Sri Lanka

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Jaffna (Sri Lanka), Nov 28 (ANI): Indian External Affairs S.M Krishna has inaugurated the Northern Railway lines for which New Delhi has pledged a 800-million dollars credit that will spur the reconstruction of the war-ravaged Sri Lanka.

Speaking on the occasion, Krishna said that even as Sri Lanka was focussing on the immediate task of providing relief and rehabilitation to those displaced by the war, long-term reconstruction was vital.

He reiterated India's commitment to help Sri Lanka in this task. And he renewed New Delhi's appeal for a lasting political settlement of the Tamil ethnic issue.

"The end of armed conflict in Sri Lanka in May 2009 provides an unparalleled opportunity to address all outstanding issues in a spirit of understanding and mutual accommodation and to work towards genuine national reconciliation," he said.

He further hoped that a process of dialogue and discussion would start soon with the participation of all communities.

"The ultimate goal is to live in dignity and peace," he added.

Krishna's visit comes over five months after President Rajapaksa"s state visit to India in June 2010. Then, a Joint Declaration was adopted, outlining a roadmap for infusing greater vigour, greater content in the India-Sri Lanka relationship.

It was decided during President Rajapaksa's visit that India would be constructing 50,000 housing units for IDPs.

Krishna would return to New Delhi today. (ANI)

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