Peace and Conflict

Interview with Austin Fernando, a Peacetime Secretary of Defence in Sri Lanka

Interview with Austin Fernando, former Secretary to the Ministry of Defence and author of ‘My Belly is White: Reminiscences of a Peacetime Secretary of Defence‘.

Austin, disarmingly charming and humble, was Defence Secretary when the Prime Minister at the time, Ranil Wickremesinghe, signed the Norwegian-brokered ceasefire agreement (CFA) with the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in February 2002.

We speak on the challenges of peacebuilding, the hidden challenges of implementing the erstwhile Ceasefire Agreement, dealing with the media during a peace process, his thoughts on future negotiations with the LTTE, the state of the UNP today and other vital points related to war and peace in Sri Lanka raised in his book.