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Door for dialogue with ULFA open: PM
January 16, 2007 16:33 IST
The doors for dialogue with the United Liberation Front of Asom were open, but it should not be mistaken for 'weakness', Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Tuesday.
"Doors for dialogue were open for everybody including the ULFA, but I would like to once again reiterate that no one should mistake our openness for talks and dialogue as a sign of weakness," he told a press conference in Dibrugarh after visiting violence-affected areas in Dibrugarh and Tinsukia districts.
ULFA had killed 70 migrants in four days since January 5.
"The Indian state has an obligation to protect the lives and properties of our citizens. This we will discharge, let there be no doubt on that score," Dr Singh, a Rajya Sabha member from Assam, said.
He said the Indian state could accommodate the "diversity of opinion and provide scope for meeting wide-ranging needs and aspirations and allowing many cultures and identities to exist. I am sure if we persist with the process of dialogue, a solution can certainly be found in Assam just as it has been found for many other groups and entities," the prime minister said.