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South Asia and SAARC Division

South Asia Division

South Asia Division deals with matters pertaining to bilateral relations with seven South Asian countries; India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, the Maldives, Bhutan, and Afghanistan.

The Division is assigned with the task of keeping track of geo political and socio-economic developments in these countries.

It also directs Sri Lanka’s foreign policy regarding these countries in the political, economic, security, education and social spheres. Technical cooperation and development assistance, investment relations, tourism and cultural promotion through both bilateral and multilateral engagements are part of the duties of the Division.

High Commissions in New Delhi, Dhaka, Islamabad and Male, an Embassy in Kathmandu and a Deputy High Commission in

 

KEY ACTIVITIES

 

  • Chennai,   Consulate General Offices in Mumbai and Karachi manage and sustain our relations with these South Asian countries which are bound by strong historical, cultural and political relations for centuries.
  • Coordinating and overseeing work of the eight resident Sri Lanka Missions.
  • Coordinating inward and outward visits at Heads of State, Ministerial and Government official levels with these countries.
  • Liaising and coordinating with other line Ministries on matters pertaining to Sri Lanka’s relations with South Asian countries.
  • Providing guidance to line Ministries on the foreign policy perspective in their interactions with these countries.
  • Providing insights when negotiating and finalizing agreements with these countries by studying Inter-State relations and other political dynamics.
  • Maintaining healthy relations with resident Diplomatic Missions of these countries based in Colombo.
  • Handling matters related to Consular Affairs involving nationals of these countries in Sri Lanka in coordination with the relevant authorities.

 

SAARC Division

The South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Division which is affiliated to the South Asian Political Affairs Division deals with matters pertaining to SAARC.

  

Establishment:

SAARC was established when its Charter was formally adopted on 8 December 1985.

 

Member Countries:

Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

 

SAARC Observers:

China, Japan, South Korea, USA, Iran, Mauritius, Australia, Myanmar and the European Union.

 

Location of Headquarters:

Kathmandu (Nepal)

 

Principles of SAARC

Cooperation in SAARC is based on respect for the five principles: sovereign equality, territorial integrity, political independence, non-interference in internal affairs of the member states and mutual benefits.

 

KEY ACTIVITIES

 

  • The SAARC Division of the Ministry of External Affairs plays a pivotal role in assisting Ministries/Departments/Institutions of Sri Lanka to conduct SAARC related meetings in accordance with the norms and procedures of the SAARC Forum.
  • The Division facilitates representatives from different Ministries to attend SAARC Meetings held in member countries. The SAARC Visa is also issued by the Division for Sri Lankan delegates attending SAARC meetings.

Name

Designation

Telephone

Email  

Fax

Mr. M. A. K. Girihagama

Director General

(SA & SAARC)

2325925

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5339521

 

Staff:

 

 

Mrs. T. P. Dharmasena

Director

5668671

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Ms. Anzul Banu Jhan

Director

5920036

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Mr. A. M. Kanchana S. Bandara

Asst. Director

5743352

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Mr. K. Kiritharan

Asst. Director

5857408

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Ms. Thilini Gunarathna

Asst. Director

5743352

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Ms. Chathuri Perera

Asst. Director

5743352

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Ms. P. N. R. Jayasuriya

Asst. Director

5857408

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Ms. Dilka Jayasuriya

Head of Branch

2436323

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