Sri Lanka: January 16, 2003


Despite months of peace talks, army troops and rebel fighters continue to maintain their combat positions. The rebels have increased their recruiting efforts in Tamil areas, including forcibly conscripting teenagers. Rebels have also set up government operations in the areas they control, but have not cracked down on Tamils using violence to drive non-Tamils out of Tamil majority areas. Many foreign diplomats who have observed the peace talks feel that the main thing that keeps the negotiations going is the promise of foreign aid for both sides. No one wants to call this money a bribe, but it has played a large part in bringing both sides to the negotiating table. 


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