(Text of letter sent to External Affairs minister Prof. GL Peiris by Sri Lanka’s High Commissioner to Malaysia)
“I cannot quite believe it that you of all people had me ‘Recalled’. Trust you would recall what I wrote about you when you took over from Rohitha Bogollagama, yes I was delighted because I expected you to bring a professional approach to Diplomacy and to the management of our foreign relations. I came out of retirement to serve as I felt that I could yet be of service to our country.
“I agreed to come to Malaysia as I was aware of the problem here and as I speak some Tamil I felt that I could be productive. There are three Tamil groups here who are hostile towards us but I engage in a dialogue with them with the hope of informing them of the present situation and winning them over or at least softening their stance towards us.
At Diyatalawa I asked that question from you as to how I should respond to them — as these people are educated professionals, some are lawyers some are university teachers, they are quite knowledgeable on the history of our conflict; perhaps I did not frame my question as I should have and you pounced upon it and said ‘you should have the answers’ -this perhaps was my crime that resulted in the decision to recall me; this, to my mind is both unjust and unfair and certainly not what I ever expected.
I have defended our country through the years of this conflict and I have my published articles to prove it.
“I have, in the past eight months that I have served here done much to develop and strengthen relations between Malaysia and our motherland. As you are aware I was able to also arrange that conversation between HE the President and the Malaysian Prime Minister to seal the agreement for them to abstain on the recent vote in the UNHCR, for which I myself worked hard. A group of hard-line Tamils even threatened the PM Najib that they would vote against him at the forthcoming elections if he did not support the resolution. I have been in contact with all groups of Tamils here, there are two groups who are friendly towards us and are working in the North, I am presently working with them and two other groups’ one with Australian connections, to build a hospital and a nurses training school in Batticaloa.
“I have revived the Sri Lanka-Malaysia Joint Commission which had gone into abeyance after 2006, I have revived the relationship with the Malaysian Agricultural Research & Development Institute (MARDI) which has agreed to help us to develop our fruit cultivation on a commercial scale; the Malaysian National Institute of Public Administration (INTAN) has formally agreed to train our personnel.
“I am also pursuing the matter of entering into formal agreements with other government agencies here including MITI (Ministry of International Trade and Industry) and the Malaysian Institute of Diplomacy and Foreign Relations (IDFR). I have been associated in promoting three investments from Malaysia and we sent a delegation of 90 businessmen for the trade exhibition organized by the Export Development Board and in July of this year I was associated in sending a high powered delegation from the Malaysian Chamber of Commerce to Sri Lanka.
To another matter which I have no doubt would be of interest to you, we are presently paying Malaysian Ringgit twenty thousand (RM 20, 000) a month as rent for the chancery building; I am presently in negotiations with two banks here to obtain a loan to purchase a suitable building for the chancery and pay back in instalments what we are presently paying as rent, so then we would own the building. The total rent paid for the chancery from the time we rented the building in 2003 to date has been Malaysian Ringgits 2.072 Million or approximately SLRS 68.376 Million.
“In consideration of the work I have done in the past eight months I shall be thankful if you would have this decision withdrawn and permit me to continue to serve you and our government as I have done these past eight months.
“With kind regards,