Sri Lanka has been criticised for refusing entry to a Swedish envoy from an EU mission.
Colombo says it is simply overwhelmed by visitors concerned over casualties among civilians trapped with rebels fighting government troops in the last pocket of Tamil Tiger resistance. But with British and French representatives allowed in, Sweden sees the move as a snub. Carl Bildt, Swedish Foreign Minister: “I’m not persona non grata because they say I’m welcome at another time. But I’m not intending to take up that invitation. No, I’m recalling my ambassador for consultations.” The Czech EU presidency also condemned the move and warned of serious consequences. Karel Schwarzenberg, Czech Foreign Minister: “I do think it is a grave mistake of the Sri Lankan government….which of course will have repercussions in Europe. Tamil Tiger rebels have released a video of what they say is a government war plane bombing a tiny coastal strip where they are hemmed in with thousands of civilians. It comes a day after Sri Lanka said it would stop using heavy weaponry to attack rebel targets.