This is just amazing. The Sri Lankan government denied a visa to Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, apparently fearful that Bildt would add his voice to the growing international chorus condeming the military’s counter-insurgency tactics that have claimed at least 6,000 civilian lives since January. The AFP has a startling quote from an un-named Sri Lankan foreign ministry official who exhibits a troubling animosity toward Europe.
“The Swedish minister also wanted to jump on that bandwagon and we said no,” the official said.
“Some think they can land up at our airport and expect a red carpet treatment. We are not a colony and neither a bankrupt Third World country. Our main donors are in Asia, not in Europe,” the official added.
In fact, the International Monetary Fund is currently in negotiations with Sri Lanka over a $1.9 billion loan. I imagine that the un-named government official is miffed that the loan has not been approved quicker. Still, playing hostile with the Europeans may not be the best way to get that loan approved.