Media Releases

President Rajapaksa calls for the de-politicisation of the UN system

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Charging that human rights are being used as a tool to implement motivated agendas with no understanding or appreciation of the complexity of issues in the countries concerned, President Mahinda Rajapaksa has made an appeal for the de-politicisation of the UN system.

President Rajapaksa made this call when he addressed the 69th United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday 24th September 2014. This is the seventh occasion that the President has addressed the General Assembly.

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Dangers posed by climate change must be addressed collectively – President Rajapaksa

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President Mahinda Rajapaksa has called on the international community to address the dangers posed by climate change collectively. Addressing over 100 other world leaders on Tuesday, 23rd September 2014, while participating in the United Nations Summit on Climate Change, in New York, the President highlighted that principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities should guide the search for common solutions to issues related to climate change. Sri Lanka ratified the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in 1993 and acceded to the Kyoto Protocol in 2002.

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Sri Lanka will not help legitimize a flawed process that could set dangerous precedent by cooperating with the OHCHR investigation

Responding to the ‘Oral Update’ on Sri Lanka by the High Commissioner for Human Rights at the Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva today (25 September 2014), Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha  said “the Government of Sri Lanka does not wish to help legitimize a flawed process and have a detrimental precedents established”, and hence “has to respectfully refuse those who urge that Sri Lanka cooperate with the OHCHR investigation.”  

He said this position has been taken after much consideration and represents not only the will of the Sri Lankan people as reflected in the motion recently adopted in the Parliament with an overwhelming majority, but also the majority within the Human Rights Council, who refused to support Operational Paragraph 10 of HRC resolution 25/1 which created an OHCHR investigation on Sri Lanka in March 2014.

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Minister G.L. Peiris extols the virtues of Anagarika Dharmapala

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External Affairs Minister, Professor G.L. Peiris, speaking on the occasion of the 150th birth anniversary of the late Anagarika Dharmapala at the Mahabodhi Society in Colombo, on 17th September, referred to several aspects of the life and work of the Anagarika, which have special relevance to Sri Lankan society today.

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GL Inaugurates International Seminar on Disarmament, Safety and Stability

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Professor G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs, inaugurated the Summer Workshop organized by the Regional Centre for Strategic Studies on 15th September 2014, on the theme “Nuclear Disarmament, Safety and Stability” at Tangerine Beach Hotel, Kalutara.

Apart from Sri Lankan officials, academics and professionals, foreign delegates participating in the workshop included scholars and practitioners from China, India, Pakistan and the United States.

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Sri Lanka and China agree to deepen their Strategic Cooperative Partnership

Sri Lanka and China have agreed to deepen their Strategic Cooperative Partnership, following official talks between the President of the People’s Republic of China, His Excellency Xi Jinping and President Mahinda Rajapaksa at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo today (16th September 2014).

President Xi Jinping, accompanied by First Lady, Madam Peng Liyuan and a high level official delegation arrived today in Sri Lanka on a two day State visit, at the invitation of President Rajapaksa. On arrival at the Bandaranaike International Airport, President Xi and Madam Peng were warmly received by President Rajapaksa and First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa. Later in the day, the Chinese dignitaries were accorded a colourful and elaborate ceremonial welcome at the Presidential Secretariat, prior to the commencement of official talks between the delegations, led by the two Presidents.

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