Krishna Discusses Resettlement of IDPs with Lankan FM

External Affairs Minister SM Krishna on Friday met his Sri Lankan counterpart Rohitha Bogollagama and is believed to have discussed the progress in the resettlement of internally displaced persons (IDPs) in northern parts of the country.

Krishan held long discussions with Bogollagama on the sidelines of a dinner hosted by Myanmar Foreign Minister U Nyan Win in the honour of participants of the 12th ministerial meeting of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi Sectoral, Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC)  in Myanmar last night.

According to reports, the minster is believed to have asked Bogollagama about the details of the IDPs who left the settlement camps.

Krishna also broached upon the issue of Indian fishermen straying into Lankan waters with the Sri Lankan Minister. Bogollagama is reported to have assured Krishna that the Navy has been instructed to hand over such fishermen to Indian authorities directly.

Reports said that Krishna talked about the progress on MoU to be signed for cooperation between the natives of the two countries.

The meeting in Myanmar comes hours after a three-member Lankan delegation comprising Basil Rajapaksa, senior adviser to President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Lalith Weeratunga, secretary to the president, and Defence Secretary Gotabhaya Rajapaksa held a series of meetings with the Indian leadership in Delhi.

They had also called on Krishna yesterday morning.

The Lankan delegation had told the Indian side that more than 158,000 IDPs have since left the camps and around 115,000 still remained there.

They indicated their resolve to resettle the IDPs before end-January 2010.

The Sri Lankan government had set a 180-day deadline for resettling IDPs after the Lankan forces defeated the LTTE in May, bringing to an end decades-long insurgency in the island nation.

Last night, Krishna also met Nepalese Deputy Prime Minister Sujatha Koirala and Myanmar counterpart U Nyan Win.

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