The professionalism of the Sri Lankan military was able to prevail eventually allowing the work of re-stabilising the country in the aftermath of the tragedy or war which didn’t seem to know boundaries leaving the people traumatised, Admiral William J. Fallon (Retd) of the US Navy said.
He said this when delivering the keynote speech at the Colombo Defence Seminar today.
He said he believed that the ending of the war had set a couple of examples to the rest of the world — one being the people live in peace and security.
“The second is that people continue to work, live and enjoy security throughout the world. However, we should keep in mind that lot of work needs to be done. Also, it is the responsibility of respective governments and State actors to pull together and contain violence for the best interests of today and tomorrow,” he said.
“There is no better example in the world than what really happened in this country by way of violence. Violence always needs a lots of collective action since expectations on the part of civilians are very high as far as their security is concerned. Audience here today may have experienced a cauldron of violence in different situations, although they are basically tragedies. I was in the Pentagon when 9 /11 strike took place.” he said.
The two-day seminar on the theme ‘Countering Violent Extremism: Global Trends’ is the 7th in the series of Defence Seminars first initiated in 2011 with the objective of establishing intellectual connectivity on preserving strategic national, regional and global security.
President Maithripala Sirisena participated as the Chief Guest while Field Marshal Sarath Fonseka, State Minister of Defence, Tri-forces Commanders, Inspector General of Police, Pujith Jayasundara, former Secretary of Defence, Past Commanders, Senior Army tri-service Officers and a host of dignitaries were present at the inaugural ceremony.
Meanwhile, Army Commander Lieutenant General Mahesh Senanayake said the Sri Lanka Army was keen on restraining the re-emergence of violence on its shore and help maintain the security in the region and in Asia.
Delivering the welcome speech at the Seminar, the Commander said the Sri Lanka Army is to have done its duty in liberating the country from the three decades of terrorism.
“With first-hand experience in defeating terrorism and being in possession of a highly-trained professional outfit, a potent combination in the contemporary setting, the Sri Lanka Army earnestly aspires to engage in sharing its related security expertise by playing a vigorous role in influencing the security architecture of Asia and the region, and to strengthen regional integration in security ties,” he said.
The Commander said the Defence Seminar was initiated in 2011 with the intention of sharing experience and knowledge earned from a three-decade long terrorist that ended in 2009 after wiping out one of the most ruthless terrorist organizations in the world.
“Violence is one of the most challenging problems of our times. It doesn’t matter any more of which part of the world you live in. The unfortunate reality is that violence spurred by terrorism has gone global and every human being is equally susceptible and vulnerable to its ferocity, “ Lieut. Gen. Senanayake said.
Defence Secretary Kapila Waidyaratne said this year’s seminar was organised not only to share the valued experiences gained by the military, but also to establish intellectual connectivity on preserving strategic national, regional and global security. (Darshana Sanjeewa)