Friday, February 17, 2017 INTERNATIONAL

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PROTEST MARCH IN MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN
Thousands demonstrate against deportations
Chris Davion and Jeff Lusanne
 
Protesters gather at the Milwaukee County Courthouse, Feb. 13, 2017. Thousands of activists in Wisconsin took part in a “Day Without Latinos” in an attempt to prevent the Milwaukee County Sheriff from cracking down on undocumented immigrants. 
TENS OF THOUSANDS of workers, families and youth marched through Milwaukee in the “Day Without Latinos, Refugees and Immigrants” protest against the Trump Administration’s raft of anti-immigrant measures. The larger-than-expected turnout reflects enormous opposition to Trump’s xenophobic and racist plans to deport millions of immigrants and refugees.
The demonstrations took place in the wake of last week’s ICE raids rounding up nearly 700 immigrants and following Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s decision to enroll the Milwaukee County law enforcement in Section 287(g) program (referring to the Immigration and Nationality Act). This deputizes local Milwaukee County police officers to carry out raids against immigrants as an extension of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
The protest was striking both in the number of workers, families and youth attending to denounce the anti-immigrant policies and in the broadly working-class character of the population that attended.
The tens of thousands of marchers carried a variety of signs denouncing Trump and Clarke and opposing their anti-democratic and discriminatory measures. Workers, families and students came from across Wisconsin, and as the mostly Latino crowd marched up 5th Avenue, a cheer erupted at the sight of hundreds of Muslim protesters and others defending refugee and immigrant rights.
On January 27, Clarke announced that he enrolled in Section 287 to support the Trump Administration’s executive orders and plans to deport millions of immigrants and refugees. He declared: “President Trump made it clear with his Executive Order on enforcement of our immigration laws... No more catch and release of criminal illegal aliens. I will assign as many deputies to this initiative as I can. It is a public safety priority.”
The World Socialist Web Site spoke to demonstrators at the rally. Yesenia said the deportations are “not fair, they are breaking up families. This is their home. Even though they say they are sending them back where they came from, they don’t know anything there; they live here, this is their home. And then parents have to leave their kids behind, because they are the ones that are being sent back.”
Many demonstrators explained that the anti-immigration policies of the Trump administration were prepared by the Obama administration, which deported 2.5 million migrants, more than all previous presidents combined.
Jeider, a young demonstrator, noted, “Even throughout the Obama Administration, this march has been going on for every single year that I can remember. There is a lack of humanity in these deportations. I see it in my house, it is right there, my parents suffer, I suffer. People are denied access to opportunities— federal aid, for example. I couldn’t go to the university I wanted to.”
His friend Favi added, “Immigrants are here for a reason. They believe this is a great place, and they are already working. Sheriff Clarke’s new law is just a new way of making us fear, of keeping us on our toes, and we already live like that. It is unnecessary, and it is based on prejudice and discrimination. That should not be allowed, ever.”
Milwaukee Sheriff Clarke has distinguished himself as an ultra-right and fascistic proponent of police state measures and is closely aligned with the Trump Administration. An African-American and registered Democrat, Clarke posted tweets endorsing a martial law-like response to social unrest regarding Trump and popular anger over police shootings, calling for a state of emergency and the use of “all non-lethal force” to “quell” the anti-Trump protests that erupted across the country after the elections.
Earlier in January, it came to light that Clarke had made bullying threats to the Milwaukee County chief medical examiner after the examiner released information about two inmates who died from horrific neglect in Milwaukee County Jail. Under Clarke’s tenure, four people died in Milwaukee jails over a six-month period in 2016, including a newborn baby birthed by a mentally-ill woman who was “laughed at” by prison guards when she cried for help while going into labor. In addition, a black man died in jail from dehydration after jail staff shut off his water supply.
The march in Milwaukee’s predominantly Hispanic South Side was organized after County Sheriff David Clarke expressed interest in making his deputies Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers as a part of President Donald Trump’s executive order.
Latinos and other protesters from at least 12 cities across Wisconsin traveled by bus to be part of the march, which was organized by Hispanic advocacy group, Voces de la Frontera. Community members and supporters were also advised to stay away from work and school, close businesses, and avoid purchases.
In Clarke’s myriad interviews in right-wing news outlets, he has referred to demonstrators against police violence participating in Black Lives Matter protests as “subhuman creeps” and made dubious claims about the group’s potential to collaborate with ISIS and that the protesters should be eradicated “from American society”. In a 2015 radio interview, Clarke said impoverished African-Americans turn to crimes of desperation “because they’re uneducated, they’re lazy, and they’re morally bankrupt. That’s why.” He epitomizes the brutal and fascistic social outlook of the American police, who serve to protect private property and the privilege of the wealthy.
—WSWS

Comment

Chris Davion and Jeff Lusanne
 
Protesters gather at the Milwaukee County Courthouse, Feb. 13, 2017. Thousands of activists in Wisconsin took part in a “Day Without Latinos” in an attempt to prevent the Milwaukee County Sheriff from cracking down on undocumented immigrants. 
TENS OF THOUSANDS of workers, families and youth marched through Milwaukee in the “Day Without Latinos, Refugees and Immigrants” protest against the Trump Administration’s raft of anti-immigrant measures. The larger-than-expected turnout reflects enormous opposition to Trump’s xenophobic and racist plans to deport millions of immigrants and refugees.
The demonstrations took place in the wake of last week’s ICE raids rounding up nearly 700 immigrants and following Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke’s decision to enroll the Milwaukee County law enforcement in Section 287(g) program (referring to the Immigration and Nationality Act). This deputizes local Milwaukee County police officers to carry out raids against immigrants as an extension of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
The protest was striking both in the number of workers, families and youth attending to denounce the anti-immigrant policies and in the broadly working-class character of the population that attended.
The tens of thousands of marchers carried a variety of signs denouncing Trump and Clarke and opposing their anti-democratic and discriminatory measures. Workers, families and students came from across Wisconsin, and as the mostly Latino crowd marched up 5th Avenue, a cheer erupted at the sight of hundreds of Muslim protesters and others defending refugee and immigrant rights.
On January 27, Clarke announced that he enrolled in Section 287 to support the Trump Administration’s executive orders and plans to deport millions of immigrants and refugees. He declared: “President Trump made it clear with his Executive Order on enforcement of our immigration laws... No more catch and release of criminal illegal aliens. I will assign as many deputies to this initiative as I can. It is a public safety priority.”
The World Socialist Web Site spoke to demonstrators at the rally. Yesenia said the deportations are “not fair, they are breaking up families. This is their home. Even though they say they are sending them back where they came from, they don’t know anything there; they live here, this is their home. And then parents have to leave their kids behind, because they are the ones that are being sent back.”
Many demonstrators explained that the anti-immigration policies of the Trump administration were prepared by the Obama administration, which deported 2.5 million migrants, more than all previous presidents combined.
Jeider, a young demonstrator, noted, “Even throughout the Obama Administration, this march has been going on for every single year that I can remember. There is a lack of humanity in these deportations. I see it in my house, it is right there, my parents suffer, I suffer. People are denied access to opportunities— federal aid, for example. I couldn’t go to the university I wanted to.”
His friend Favi added, “Immigrants are here for a reason. They believe this is a great place, and they are already working. Sheriff Clarke’s new law is just a new way of making us fear, of keeping us on our toes, and we already live like that. It is unnecessary, and it is based on prejudice and discrimination. That should not be allowed, ever.”
Milwaukee Sheriff Clarke has distinguished himself as an ultra-right and fascistic proponent of police state measures and is closely aligned with the Trump Administration. An African-American and registered Democrat, Clarke posted tweets endorsing a martial law-like response to social unrest regarding Trump and popular anger over police shootings, calling for a state of emergency and the use of “all non-lethal force” to “quell” the anti-Trump protests that erupted across the country after the elections.
Earlier in January, it came to light that Clarke had made bullying threats to the Milwaukee County chief medical examiner after the examiner released information about two inmates who died from horrific neglect in Milwaukee County Jail. Under Clarke’s tenure, four people died in Milwaukee jails over a six-month period in 2016, including a newborn baby birthed by a mentally-ill woman who was “laughed at” by prison guards when she cried for help while going into labor. In addition, a black man died in jail from dehydration after jail staff shut off his water supply.
The march in Milwaukee’s predominantly Hispanic South Side was organized after County Sheriff David Clarke expressed interest in making his deputies Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers as a part of President Donald Trump’s executive order.
Latinos and other protesters from at least 12 cities across Wisconsin traveled by bus to be part of the march, which was organized by Hispanic advocacy group, Voces de la Frontera. Community members and supporters were also advised to stay away from work and school, close businesses, and avoid purchases.
In Clarke’s myriad interviews in right-wing news outlets, he has referred to demonstrators against police violence participating in Black Lives Matter protests as “subhuman creeps” and made dubious claims about the group’s potential to collaborate with ISIS and that the protesters should be eradicated “from American society”. In a 2015 radio interview, Clarke said impoverished African-Americans turn to crimes of desperation “because they’re uneducated, they’re lazy, and they’re morally bankrupt. That’s why.” He epitomizes the brutal and fascistic social outlook of the American police, who serve to protect private property and the privilege of the wealthy.
—WSWS

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Washington’s war threat against Iran

Bill Van Auken
 
IT IS JUST two weeks since President Donald Trump was sworn into office after delivering an inaugural address proclaiming his policy of “America First” and vowing to defend the United States against “the ravages of other countries.”
Any illusions that this policy spelled a turn away from the unending wars waged by the US over the past quarter of a century in favor of isolationism have been rapidly dispelled. Trump and his advisors have staged one bellicose provocation after another in a sharp escalation of the longstanding militarist policy of American imperialism.
This has taken its starkest form in the ultimatum delivered 1 February 2017 by Trump’s national security advisor, Gen. Michael Flynn. The former chief of military intelligence marched unannounced into a White House press briefing to declare that “... we are officially putting Iran on notice” over its ballistic missile test and an unsubstantiated charge that it was somehow responsible for an attack on a Saudi Arabian warship by Houthi rebels in Yemen three days later.
Both, Flynn declared, were examples of “Iran’s destabilizing behavior across the entire Middle East,” as well as the failure of the Obama administration “to respond adequately to Tehran’s malign actions.”
After delivering his ultimatum, Flynn turned on his heels and left the briefing without taking a single question.
At White House press briefingon 2 February 2017, only one reporter asked whether placing Iran “on notice” included the threat of military action. The White House spokesman Sean Spicer responded by falsely charging that Iran’s missile test violated a UN resolution and citing “Iran’s additional hostile actions that it took against our Navy vessel,” apparently referring to the Houthi attack on a Saudi ship. These were actions, he said, that Washington would not “sit by and take,” and they would not be “going un-responded to.”
While the corporate media has criticized Trump on other issues, its response to the war threat against Iran is notably subdued. This is no accident. While it takes a more extreme form under Trump, the threat of war against Iran is hardly an innovation by the new president. Such threats date back to the 1979 overthrow of the Shah’s US-backed dictatorship, through to George W. Bush’s “Axis of Evil” and repeated US-Israeli threats of air strikes under Obama. Planning for such a war of aggression has a long bipartisan pedigree.
 
Tomahawk cruise missiles
What is Iran to make of these latest extraordinary statements? Given Trump’s repeated statements that there should be no talk about military action before it is initiated, Iran has every reason to believe that Tomahawk cruise missiles could be flying towards Tehran within days. Or that the Trump administration is attempting by means of provocation to tear up the nuclear treaty, goading Tehran into resuming its nuclear program and preparing the way for a US-Israeli attack.
The motives for such a war are clear, and they have nothing to do with ballistic missile tests or attacks on Saudi warships. Nearly a decade and a half after US imperialism launched its war of imperialist aggression against Iraq, followed by subsequent wars for regime-change initiated by the Obama administration in Libya and Syria, US policy throughout the region lies in shambles. In both Iraq and Syria, where Washington sought to bring to power a puppet regime in preparation for war against Iran, Tehran has substantially increased its influence and status as a regional power, posing an obstacle to the US drive for hegemony over the oil-rich region.
In one of his crude tweets on 1 February 2017, Trump gave expression to the exasperation of the US ruling establishment over this course of events: “Iran is rapidly taking over more and more of Iraq even after the US has squandered three trillion dollars there.”
 
Thuggish assertion
Last week, Trump spoke at CIA headquarters, repeating his thuggish assertion that the US should have “taken Iraq’s oil” after the 2003 invasion, while casually adding, “maybe you’ll have another chance.” These remarks appear more and more to represent a direct threat of a far wider and bloodier war that could engulf the entire Middle East and beyond. The consequences of a war with Iran would be catastrophic not only in the region, but internationally and in the US itself.
In a worried article titled “A new era in foreign policy,” the Washington Post commented on 2 February 2017 that “President Trump is advancing a combative and iconoclastic foreign policy that appears to sideline traditional diplomacy and concentrate decision-making among a small group of aides who are quickly projecting their new ‘America First’ approach to the world.”
It would be a dangerous mistake, however, to believe that the actions of the Trump White House are the result of mere improvisation or impulse. Rather, they are part of a definite plan.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump’s aides refer to their policy as one of “shock and awe,” directed this time around not at smashing and subjugating just Iraq, but rather the entire planet, including the working class within the United States itself.
The shape of the foreign policy agenda being pursued by the Trump White House becomes clearer every day. It is focusing today on Iran while pursuing an increasingly confrontational policy toward China. Stephen Bannon, Trump’s fascistic chief strategist, predicted in a radio broadcast in the run-up to the 2016 election that the US will be “going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years.”
To the extent that the Trump administration has adopted a conciliatory attitude towards Russia—the focus of bitter disputes within the ruling establishment that played out in the election—it is only a temporary and tactical postponement, meant to facilitate war elsewhere. Should Moscow fail to comply with US interests, its turn will come sooner rather than later.
 
Unprecedented in US history
The way the Trump White House conducts foreign policy, its threats and insults to nominal allies and adversaries alike, does not have a real precedent in the history of American governments. Rather, his treatment of foreign governments and heads of state recalls the thuggish bluster and intimidation of an Adolf Hitler or Benito Mussolini.
But Trump, like them, did not fall from the sky or rise out of hell. He is the personification of the criminality of the financial oligarchy that rules America. The policies he is pursuing may be unprecedented, but they have been prepared over decades.
Particularly since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the US capitalist class, acting through both Democratic and Republican administrations, has sought, for the most part unsuccessfully, to offset its crises and the erosion of its domination of world markets through the threat and use of military force.
With the advent of the Trump presidency, and in the aftermath of a series of disasters resulting from this protracted policy of global militarism, the policy has taken a more extreme and reckless form in the headlong rush toward world war.
—WSWS

Comment

Bill Van Auken
 
IT IS JUST two weeks since President Donald Trump was sworn into office after delivering an inaugural address proclaiming his policy of “America First” and vowing to defend the United States against “the ravages of other countries.”
Any illusions that this policy spelled a turn away from the unending wars waged by the US over the past quarter of a century in favor of isolationism have been rapidly dispelled. Trump and his advisors have staged one bellicose provocation after another in a sharp escalation of the longstanding militarist policy of American imperialism.
This has taken its starkest form in the ultimatum delivered 1 February 2017 by Trump’s national security advisor, Gen. Michael Flynn. The former chief of military intelligence marched unannounced into a White House press briefing to declare that “... we are officially putting Iran on notice” over its ballistic missile test and an unsubstantiated charge that it was somehow responsible for an attack on a Saudi Arabian warship by Houthi rebels in Yemen three days later.
Both, Flynn declared, were examples of “Iran’s destabilizing behavior across the entire Middle East,” as well as the failure of the Obama administration “to respond adequately to Tehran’s malign actions.”
After delivering his ultimatum, Flynn turned on his heels and left the briefing without taking a single question.
At White House press briefingon 2 February 2017, only one reporter asked whether placing Iran “on notice” included the threat of military action. The White House spokesman Sean Spicer responded by falsely charging that Iran’s missile test violated a UN resolution and citing “Iran’s additional hostile actions that it took against our Navy vessel,” apparently referring to the Houthi attack on a Saudi ship. These were actions, he said, that Washington would not “sit by and take,” and they would not be “going un-responded to.”
While the corporate media has criticized Trump on other issues, its response to the war threat against Iran is notably subdued. This is no accident. While it takes a more extreme form under Trump, the threat of war against Iran is hardly an innovation by the new president. Such threats date back to the 1979 overthrow of the Shah’s US-backed dictatorship, through to George W. Bush’s “Axis of Evil” and repeated US-Israeli threats of air strikes under Obama. Planning for such a war of aggression has a long bipartisan pedigree.
 
Tomahawk cruise missiles
What is Iran to make of these latest extraordinary statements? Given Trump’s repeated statements that there should be no talk about military action before it is initiated, Iran has every reason to believe that Tomahawk cruise missiles could be flying towards Tehran within days. Or that the Trump administration is attempting by means of provocation to tear up the nuclear treaty, goading Tehran into resuming its nuclear program and preparing the way for a US-Israeli attack.
The motives for such a war are clear, and they have nothing to do with ballistic missile tests or attacks on Saudi warships. Nearly a decade and a half after US imperialism launched its war of imperialist aggression against Iraq, followed by subsequent wars for regime-change initiated by the Obama administration in Libya and Syria, US policy throughout the region lies in shambles. In both Iraq and Syria, where Washington sought to bring to power a puppet regime in preparation for war against Iran, Tehran has substantially increased its influence and status as a regional power, posing an obstacle to the US drive for hegemony over the oil-rich region.
In one of his crude tweets on 1 February 2017, Trump gave expression to the exasperation of the US ruling establishment over this course of events: “Iran is rapidly taking over more and more of Iraq even after the US has squandered three trillion dollars there.”
 
Thuggish assertion
Last week, Trump spoke at CIA headquarters, repeating his thuggish assertion that the US should have “taken Iraq’s oil” after the 2003 invasion, while casually adding, “maybe you’ll have another chance.” These remarks appear more and more to represent a direct threat of a far wider and bloodier war that could engulf the entire Middle East and beyond. The consequences of a war with Iran would be catastrophic not only in the region, but internationally and in the US itself.
In a worried article titled “A new era in foreign policy,” the Washington Post commented on 2 February 2017 that “President Trump is advancing a combative and iconoclastic foreign policy that appears to sideline traditional diplomacy and concentrate decision-making among a small group of aides who are quickly projecting their new ‘America First’ approach to the world.”
It would be a dangerous mistake, however, to believe that the actions of the Trump White House are the result of mere improvisation or impulse. Rather, they are part of a definite plan.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump’s aides refer to their policy as one of “shock and awe,” directed this time around not at smashing and subjugating just Iraq, but rather the entire planet, including the working class within the United States itself.
The shape of the foreign policy agenda being pursued by the Trump White House becomes clearer every day. It is focusing today on Iran while pursuing an increasingly confrontational policy toward China. Stephen Bannon, Trump’s fascistic chief strategist, predicted in a radio broadcast in the run-up to the 2016 election that the US will be “going to war in the South China Sea in five to 10 years.”
To the extent that the Trump administration has adopted a conciliatory attitude towards Russia—the focus of bitter disputes within the ruling establishment that played out in the election—it is only a temporary and tactical postponement, meant to facilitate war elsewhere. Should Moscow fail to comply with US interests, its turn will come sooner rather than later.
 
Unprecedented in US history
The way the Trump White House conducts foreign policy, its threats and insults to nominal allies and adversaries alike, does not have a real precedent in the history of American governments. Rather, his treatment of foreign governments and heads of state recalls the thuggish bluster and intimidation of an Adolf Hitler or Benito Mussolini.
But Trump, like them, did not fall from the sky or rise out of hell. He is the personification of the criminality of the financial oligarchy that rules America. The policies he is pursuing may be unprecedented, but they have been prepared over decades.
Particularly since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, the US capitalist class, acting through both Democratic and Republican administrations, has sought, for the most part unsuccessfully, to offset its crises and the erosion of its domination of world markets through the threat and use of military force.
With the advent of the Trump presidency, and in the aftermath of a series of disasters resulting from this protracted policy of global militarism, the policy has taken a more extreme and reckless form in the headlong rush toward world war.
—WSWS

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Going back to an alliance that can win elections

Jehan Perera in Colombo
 
THE SRI LANKAN government has been dogged by negative public opinion on its failure to tackle what it promised during its election campaigns two years ago. In the public perception it has yet to satisfactorily tackle corruption, bring about visible economic development or ensure the correction of war-related injustices. It has been losing popularity due to its inability to defend its performance on these issues. Marriages of convenience tend to get weakened in times of prolonged stress. There has been open bickering between the two main constituent parties of the government alliance. It is no surprise in this context that the government has been balking at facing local government elections. These have been postponed on various grounds for the past two years. The government’s justification with regard to not holding the local government elections has been wearing thin. 
One reason given for the delay in conducting these elections is that the review of delimitation of electorates (wards, in the case of local government institutions), is not complete. First the issuance of the delimitation review report was itself delayed. Then the report was said to be insufficient. Now it has been accepted by the government but the start date for the electoral process to unfurl will be in another two or three weeks. There could be legal challenges, this time in the courts, to further delay the local government election date. It is reported that the delimitation report would be gazetted on February 28 to conduct the local government elections. An official of the Local Government ministry said that after the Committee Chairman Asoka Peiris handed over the report, the defects in it were rectified and amounted to 312 mistakes in 121 pages of the English report, 535 in 151 pages of the Tamil report  which were later corrected. 
The government’s apprehension about holding the local government elections is that it may not do too well at them on account of having to compete both within itself and with other political opponents. This in on account of facing down a tussle between the UNP and SLFP as to what they want to do and what they should get. At the general elections of 2015 the UNP and SLFP contested separately. The larger number of parliamentarians from the SLFP is now with the Joint Opposition. 
 
New constitution
The government has announced in parliament its intention to forge ahead with constitutional change and to consolidate it with a referendum. The government intends to go in for a referendum with the consent of all parties including the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) on the new Constitution. Leader of the House and Higher Education and Highways Minister Lakshman Kiriella said that it was the government’s objective to bring forth the new constitution, followed by a referendum with the support of the SLFP. The Minister said that the government would not form the new constitution behind hidden doors. He said there were certain political parties who were still forwarding their proposals for the new constitution. He also said that former President Mahinda Rajapaksa had said that the country needed to go beyond the 13th Amendment to 13th Amendment Plus. He added that the government would steer the new constitution within the provisions of the 13th amendment to the constitution and not go for a federal state.

Comment

Jehan Perera in Colombo
 
THE SRI LANKAN government has been dogged by negative public opinion on its failure to tackle what it promised during its election campaigns two years ago. In the public perception it has yet to satisfactorily tackle corruption, bring about visible economic development or ensure the correction of war-related injustices. It has been losing popularity due to its inability to defend its performance on these issues. Marriages of convenience tend to get weakened in times of prolonged stress. There has been open bickering between the two main constituent parties of the government alliance. It is no surprise in this context that the government has been balking at facing local government elections. These have been postponed on various grounds for the past two years. The government’s justification with regard to not holding the local government elections has been wearing thin. 
One reason given for the delay in conducting these elections is that the review of delimitation of electorates (wards, in the case of local government institutions), is not complete. First the issuance of the delimitation review report was itself delayed. Then the report was said to be insufficient. Now it has been accepted by the government but the start date for the electoral process to unfurl will be in another two or three weeks. There could be legal challenges, this time in the courts, to further delay the local government election date. It is reported that the delimitation report would be gazetted on February 28 to conduct the local government elections. An official of the Local Government ministry said that after the Committee Chairman Asoka Peiris handed over the report, the defects in it were rectified and amounted to 312 mistakes in 121 pages of the English report, 535 in 151 pages of the Tamil report  which were later corrected. 
The government’s apprehension about holding the local government elections is that it may not do too well at them on account of having to compete both within itself and with other political opponents. This in on account of facing down a tussle between the UNP and SLFP as to what they want to do and what they should get. At the general elections of 2015 the UNP and SLFP contested separately. The larger number of parliamentarians from the SLFP is now with the Joint Opposition. 
 
New constitution
The government has announced in parliament its intention to forge ahead with constitutional change and to consolidate it with a referendum. The government intends to go in for a referendum with the consent of all parties including the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) on the new Constitution. Leader of the House and Higher Education and Highways Minister Lakshman Kiriella said that it was the government’s objective to bring forth the new constitution, followed by a referendum with the support of the SLFP. The Minister said that the government would not form the new constitution behind hidden doors. He said there were certain political parties who were still forwarding their proposals for the new constitution. He also said that former President Mahinda Rajapaksa had said that the country needed to go beyond the 13th Amendment to 13th Amendment Plus. He added that the government would steer the new constitution within the provisions of the 13th amendment to the constitution and not go for a federal state.

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