Defending his government's efforts in rehabilitating the Tamil-dominated northern region, Rajapaksa said, "We always support peace and we will keep supporting peace for all people."

"In Sri Lanka we also fought thirty years of war against terrorists. So the whole development process, the economy went down. We suffered for thirty years but now we have peace for the last four years. In 2009, we managed to eradicate terrorism," he further said.

"Though we have eradicated terrorism, now we have to face the international community, which is pressurizing us," the Sri Lankan leader told his Israeli counterpart Shimon Peres.

Ruing the continuous condemnation of his country's human rights record at international forums, Rajapaksa said that his country would need some time to deal with their demands.

"Now our issue is that some of the countries are criticizing though there are no bombs blasting in our country. Every March or every six months in Geneva we are facing a confrontation with these countries. Some of the Western countries are bringing resolutions in the Human Rights Commission," he said in reference to resolutions brought in the UNHCR.

"What we say is that we want time because in three to four years these issues cannot be sorted out," Rajapaksa argued.

UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in March had adopted a US-sponsored resolution against Sri Lanka over its rights record, with 25 countries including India voting in favour of the document.

The resolution had urged Sri Lanka to reconcile with the Tamils and address outstanding issues of rights accountability.

Elaborating on steps taken by his government to develop the northern peninsula region and to integrate Tamils into the mainstream, the Sri Lankan President said that his government has spent almost USD 400 million in developing the region.

(Agencies)

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