Sri Lanka obtains Accreditation Status in the African Union

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Turning a new chapter in the history of Sri Lanka – Africa relations, the Commission of the African Union granted Sri Lanka Accreditation Status in the African Union (AU) with effect from April 2014 as a non-African State. Sri Lanka is the 3rd South Asian country along with India and Pakistan to have obtained Accreditation Status in the African Union. This new membership is a progressive reflection of the country’s new multifaceted Foreign Policy commitment of reenergizing its longstanding affinities with the African region.

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‘Your country cannot be second to any of your interests’ - President tells youth

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“I wish to appeal to the young people who represent the world, to regard your country, as sacred. It cannot be second to any of your interests; nor can it be sacrificed for any gain whatsoever,” said President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
 
Inaugurating the World Conference on Youth (WCY) 2014 at the Magama Ruhunupura International Conference Centre in Hambantota today (6), he said there may be outside pressures to compromise your love for your country, but all such pressures must be resisted at any cost. Only then, can we build a better world for all of us without destroying the cultures, traditions, customs, that we are heirs to.
 

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Fitch Affirms Sri Lanka at 'BB-'; Outlook Stable

Fitch Ratings has affirmed Sri Lanka's Long-Term Foreign and Local Currency IDRs at 'BB-'. The issue ratings on Sri Lanka's senior unsecured foreign and local currency bonds are also affirmed at 'BB-'. The Outlooks on the Long-Term IDRs are Stable. The Country Ceiling is affirmed at 'BB-' and the Short-Term Foreign Currency IDR at 'B'.
 

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PROF. PEIRIS BRIEFS DIPLOMATS ON GOVERNMENT ACTION AGAINST TERRORIST FUNDING

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A comprehensive briefing was provided for Ambassadors and High Commissioners accredited to Sri Lanka, at the Ministry of External Affairs, on Thursday, 24th April 2014 by Professor G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, with the assistance of Major General K.H.G. Hendawitharana, representing the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development.


The principal purpose of the briefing was to give the diplomatic community authentic information regarding action taken by the government against groups and individuals involved in terrorist funding and other activity connected with plans to revive terrorism.

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Coordinated approach for counseling and psychosocial support for conflict-affected persons

Counseling programmes for conflict-affected persons in the North and East have been further consolidated by adopting a coordinated and comprehensive approach.

At a meeting held on April 9 with stakeholder ministries, Secretary to the President and Chairman of the Committee Monitoring LLRC Recommendations Mr. Lalith Weeratunga emphasized the importance of adopting a holistic and coordinated approach, linking all programs currently carried out by government ministries, for creating greater efficiency in the provision of counseling and psychosocial support.

 

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Celebrate the New Year with pride - President

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“We celebrate the Avurudda with pride in our efforts towards building a self-sufficient nation,” said President Mahinda Rajapaksa in his New Year message.

“We celebrate the dawn of this Sinhala and Tamil Aluth Avurudda with pride in our efforts towards building a nation self-sufficient in an abundant harvest of nature’s blessings, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said in his Sinhala-Hindu New Year message.

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ATTEMPTED RESURGENCE OF THE LTTE AND THE INCIDENT IN THE JUNGLE OFF PADAVIYA ON 11 APRIL 2014

An attempt for resurgence of terrorism in Sri Lanka surfaced in general area Pallai in the Jaffna Peninsula calling for launching another phase of the LTTE struggle for a separate state. The information on several key suspects who were leading the campaign for resurgence of the LTTE also surfaced. Investigators made several arrests that led to recovery of arms, ammunitions, explosives and other material that were in their possession.

 

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There are no minorities in this country, all have equal rights - President

President Mahinda Rajapaksa said there are no minorities in this country and all citizens have equal rights to live as one nation and one people with same laws and facilities without any discrimination. “This is my policy, the policy enshrined in the Mahinda Chinthana. There cannot be any minorities, we all are Sri Lankans who love the Motherland and nobody can deny this reality”.

Addressing the National Unity Convention, at the BMICH this morning (April 7) the President pointed out that all people, irrespective their religion or ethnicity celebrated the victory of the Sri Lankan cricket team the previous evening. “There was no difference of being Sinhalese, Tamils or Muslims, they joined hands to celebrate displaying the proud of the achievement of the country, the Motherland Sri Lanka,” he said.

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Sri Lanka World T20 champions: President congratulates Sri Lankan cricket team

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa congratulated the Sri Lanka team after winning the ICC T20 World Cup by beating India in Dhaka yesterday (6 April 2014).


The President personally telephoned the Sri Lanka team in the Bangladesh capital, immediately after the final match last night.

 

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Foreign Minister signs order banning LTTE fronts

Hon Minister of External Affairs of Sri Lanka

An order, designating persons and entities in terms of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 which sets out strategies to combat terrorism and to control terrorist financing has been signed by Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, and will be published in the Government Gazette shortly. This order is based on the recommendation by the Secretary, Ministry of Defence and Urban Development, as the Competent Authority regarding the identification of persons, groups and entities, believed on reasonable grounds to be committing, attempting to commit, facilitating or participating, in the commission of acts of terrorism.

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Election result clearly shows that no force can defeat national interests of the country – President

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Considering the massive victory gained by the United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) at the Western and Southern Provincial Council Elections, it is obvious that the people have given an overwhelming mandate to the Government’s people-friendly policies. The victory is a clear message to the evil forces trying to harm the country, states President Mahinda Rajapaksa in a message.

 

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Southern Expressway second phase opened

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The Second Phase of the Southern Expressway from Pinnaduwa in Galle to Godagama in Matara was declared open by President Mahinda Rajapaksa today (March 15).

A special ceremony to mark this occasion was held at Godagama, Matara under the patronage of the President.

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Today we have the conditions of peace throughout to freely celebrate Maha Siva Rathri - President

President Mahinda Rajapaksa issuing a message to mark the Maha Siva Rathri said we now have the conditions of peace throughout the land to freely celebrate this important festival in true spirit of unity and understanding.
 

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“Govt. is continuing with its genuine & credible commitment to reconciliation process” - Ambassador Amza tells European Parliament

”Sri Lanka is concerned about the continuation of selective adoption of country-specific actions in the HRC, driven by electoral compulsions of some Member States, as these efforts can erode the credibility and impartiality of the Council. Sri Lanka categorically rejected the previous two Resolutions adopted by the Council in March 2012 and 2013, respectively, as they were a result of a politicized and ill-conceived process, that polarized the membership of the Human Rights Council”, said Sri Lanka’s Head of Mission to the European Union, Ambassador Amza addressing the meeting of the European Parliament’s Delegation for Relations with the Countries in the South Asia (DSAS) yesterday (19).

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UN Assistant Secretary General calls on President

The UN Assistant Secretary-General and Assistant Administrator and Director, Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Mr. Haoliang Xu called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees yesterday evening (Feb 12).

Commending Sri Lanka’s achievements in obtaining high levels in human development indicators, Mr. Haoliang said the country’s success stories should be highlighted and that his organization would help do so. Other topics discussed during the meeting included development work in the North, overall provincial development, education and further strengthening the partnership between the UN system and the Sri Lankan Government.

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I call upon all countries to join us in path to democracy and reconciliation - President

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa today called upon all countries to join hands in the path to democracy, development, national freedom and the strengthening of human rights.

Speaking at Independence Day celebrations in Kegalle this morning, President Rajapaksa said, “People in our country who belong to all religions and speak different languages are moving together in unity and strength towards reconciliation and development. With utmost goodwill I call upon all countries to join hands with us in the path to democracy, development, national freedom and the strengthening of human rights.”

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World Bank commends Sri Lanka's achievements

Phillippe Le Houerou, World Bank Vice President for the South Asian Region, who is on a visit to the island commended Sri Lanka for its economic and other achievements when he met President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees yesterday (27).

During the discussion Sri Lanka's development process and the present and future cooperation between the World Bank and Sri Lanka were highlighted. Mr. Houerou said that after his arrival he had visited the North, the East and several other parts of the country and spoken to government officials and people of all walks of life. "The level of development I have witnessed is highly impressive", he noted.

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New Chair of the G-77 Vienna Chapter assumes office

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Ambassador Aliyar Lebbe Abdul Azeez, the Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka, today officially took over the chairmanship of  the Group of 77 (G-77) Vienna Chapter. He succeeds Ambassador Mahmoud Elamin, the Permanent Representative of the Sudan, whose leadership during 2013 was highly praised by representatives of the G-77 Member States.  


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UAE Assures Support to Sri Lanka

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa held talks this afternoon with Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum who is the vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the ruler of Dubai. During the discussion, Sheikh Mohammed assured President Rajapaksa of UAE’s support to Sri Lanka.
 
In cordial and friendly talks that took place in Dubai, the Sheikh told the President that he understood very well Sri Lanka’s situation and the realities on the ground.
 
Sheikh Mohammed further expressed his willingness to enhance bilateral relations and to increase UAE investments in Sri Lanka. Commending President Rajapaksa’s able leadership, the Prime Minister said there is now a conducive environment for investing in Sri Lanka since peace has returned after so many years.
 

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Exerting excessive pressure on Sri Lanka is counterproductive – Prof. Peiris

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Excessive pressure being exerted on Sri Lanka by repeated resolutions in the Human Rights Council in Geneva are counterproductive because of their polarizing effect, External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris said. The Minister was speaking at a meeting with the Board of Directors of the Asia Foundation at the Ministry of External Affairs on Tuesday.

 

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Presidential commission probing disappearances to commence sittings on Jan 18

 

The Presidential Commission to probe alleged abduction and disappearances of persons resident in the Northern and Eastern Provinces during the period 1990-2009 will commence its first public sittings on the 18th of this month.

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President Rajapaksa Holds Discussions with Israeli President Peres

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Israeli President Shimon Peres held discussions at the President’s Office in Jerusalem Thursday (Jan. 09).  President Rajapaksa arrived in Jerusalem yesterday as the final stop on his Middle East visit.
 

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President Rajapaksa Conferred with the “Star of Palestine”

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The Government of Palestine today conferred President Mahinda Rajapaksa with the “Star of Palestine” – the highest award of the State of Palestine.

 
“The relations between Sri Lanka and the State of Palestine are exceptional and we remain committed to extending our fullest support to the State of Palestine and the friendly people of Palestine,” President Rajapaksa said during the conferment ceremony.
 

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President Rajapaksa Holds Talks with the King of Jordan

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa held talks with the King of Jordan His Majesty King Abdulla II Ibn Al Hussein Sunday (Jan. 05) afternoon at the Royal Hashemite Court in Amman.

Following a warm welcome for President Rajapaksa, the two leaders held discussions on a number of topics relevant to both countries, including cooperation in defense-related activities and progress of the Joint Committee that was established after the signing of the Trade and Economic Cooperation Agreement in 2007.

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Northern Province Chief Minister calls on President

President CMvigneswaran 2jan2014

Northern Province Chief Minister C.V. Wigneswaran called on President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees yesterday (2.01.2014).

After wishing the President for the New Year, the Chief Minister and the President were engaged in a cordial discussion.

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President Rajapaksa calls on Sri Lankans to ensure national unity and peace in New Year

President SpeaksWe have stepped into the development decade with dedication. You already enjoy its fruits in newly built highways, airports, power plants, ports, roadways and beautification of cities, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said.

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