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Last updated: 07 March, 2005 - Published 18:23 GMT
 
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No direct funds to LTTE says World Bank
 
The World Bank says that it has no intention of giving funds directly to Tamil Tigers.

In a statement issued on Monday the WB said that it does not "and have not disbursed any funding directly to the LTTE, and there is no intention to change this policy".

Peter Harrold
World Bank country director visiting LTTE held territory in 2003

WB Country Director for Sri Lanka Peter Harrold made this statement in response to a call by ruling coalition partner Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) on Sunday to withdraw a statement by representative of World Bank "which threatens the sovereignty of Sri Lanka".

The JVP was referring to an interview given by the WB representative to the "Sunday Times" on tsunami related funds.

"Sunday Times" quoted Peter Harrold recognising the LTTE controlled area as "a kind of unofficial state".

'Overstepped'

Peter Harrold "had overstepped his duties by making a controversial statement to a newspaper," said the JVP.

The WB country director who maintains that he was misquoted, says that he never used the phrase "a kind of unofficial state."

In its statement on Sunday the JVP demanded "that the heads of the World Bank to take steps to withdraw their representative immediately," if calls for the withdrawal of Peter Harrold's statement is not met.

When in opposition the JVP constantly demanded the WB to quit Sri Lanka.

'inaccurate and misleading'

The WB in reply says that it regrets "the inaccurate and misleading portrayal of the World Bank's position in the JVP statement and the subsequent reports in the media".

All funds for the North and East, it adds, "is disbursed through the official Government channel of the North East Provincial Council".

The last elected provincial council of the North and East was dissolved in 1990.

Government recently appointed Tyronne Fernando as the governer of the region.

 
 
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