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Last updated: 21 September, 2007 - Published 14:13 GMT
 
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Lack of equality 'cause for conflict'
 
Satyagraha in Colombo (photo Elmo Fernando)
Activists called on the public to play more active role against the war
Lack of equality among communities and religious groups is the main cause for the conflict in the island nation, peace campaigners said.

Colombo district parliamentarian and the leader of the Western Peoples Front (WPF) told BBC Sandeshaya : "That is the main reason for the lack of peace in Sri Lanka".

Campaigners launched a satyagraha in Colombo's Hyde Park on Friday to mark the interantionl day of peace.

Satyagraha in Colombo

The satyagraha attended by representatives from all major religions and peace activists was organised by the Anti - War National Front (AWNF).

 Lack of equality among communnities, religious and other groups is the main reason for the lack of peace in Sri Lanka
 
Parliamentarian Mano Ganeshan

AWNF leader, Kumar Rupasinghe, called on the public to raise their voice against the ongoing war between the government forces and the Tamil Tigers.

"The government, other militant groups and the LTTE are engaged in violence because the public does not raise their voice against," he told BBC's Elmo Fernando.

Women's art exhibition

The protest was called "For a humane country defeating the killing culture".

Leader of the Left Front Dr. Vickramabahu Karunarathne accused the authorities of exploiting the war to 'opress' trade unions and mass organisations.

Banner at women's exhibition (photo Elmo Fernando)
Women activists say women needed to raise their voice against the conflict

Siritunga Jayasuriya, leader of the Civil Monitoring Committee, who echoed the same views added that the government is exagerating victories in the war front to continue the war against the LTTE.

Women for Peace (WFP), meanwhile, marked the international day by organisng an art exhibition at Lipton roundabout in the capital.

Viola Perera, WFP's senior programme officer told BBC Sandeahaya: "Women should come forward for peace as they are a major group in the community that suffer from the conflict".

 
 
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