Media Releases

India – Sri Lanka Joint Press Statement

The Eighth meeting of the India-Sri Lanka Joint Commission was held on 22 January 2013 in New Delhi. It was co-chaired by Shri Salman Khurshid, Minister of External Affairs of India and Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs of Sri Lanka. The Joint Commission Meeting (JCM) was preceded by the Senior Officials Meeting at the level of the Foreign Secretaries of the two countries on 21 January 2013.

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President Rajapaksa and the Government deplores the beheading of Miss Rizana Nafeek

It has been confirmed that Miss Rizana Nafeek was beheaded by Saudi authorities this morning at Dawadmy, Saudi Arabia.

The Sri Lankan housemaid was employed for less than 6 weeks in 2005 when she was charged by her Saudi employer for allegedly killing their infant while she was bottle feeding and thereafter sentenced to death in the year 2007.  

The Government of Sri Lanka arranged for an appeal against the death sentence with the assistance of the Asian Human Rights Organization based in Hong Kong but the Superior Court of Saudi Arabia reconfirmed the death sentence.

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Sri Lankan seaman in the hijacked vessel “Orana” by Somali pirates released

A cargo vessel “MV Orana” owned by an Ajman based shipping company, Kassab Inter Shipping LLC was hijacked by Somali pirates on 2nd December 2010 with twenty crew members on board including a Sri Lankan seaman named Mr. K.A.S.Soorasena.

The Ministry of External Affairs, through the Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Dubai and the High Commission of Sri Lanka in Nairobi, was in constant contact with the owner of the vessel with a view of securing the release of Mr. Soorasena while keeping his family briefed about the developments on regular basis.

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Sri Lanka and Canada to work together against Human Smuggling

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Canada’s Minister for Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism Jason Kenney called on External Affairs Minister Prof G.L. Pieris yesterday. It was noted that a ministerial level visit from Canada was taking place after three years and the two ministers welcomed the opportunity for a candid exchange of views on a range of bilateral issues.
 

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Establishment of Diplomatic Relations between Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Islamic Republic of Mauritania

The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Islamic Republic of Mauritania established formal diplomatic relations on 21st December 2012. H.E. Dr. Palitha Kohona, the Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, signed the Joint Communiqué on behalf of Sri Lanka, while H.E. Mr. Ahmed Ould Teguedi, the Permanent Representative of Mauritania to the United Nations, singed on behalf of Mauritania.

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Joint Communiqué Between The Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and The Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

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1.    At the invitation of the Hon. Prof. G.L. Peiris, Minister of External Affairs of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, His Excellency Dr. Zalmai Rassoul, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan paid an official visit to Sri Lanka from 18th  - 21st December 2012, marking the first ever bilateral visit undertaken by an Afghan Foreign Minister to Sri Lanka.

2.    The visiting Afghan Foreign Minister was accompanied by His Excellency Mr. Shaida M. Abdali, Non-Resident Ambassador of Afghanistan to Sri Lanka, Mr. Azizudin Ahmadzada, Director General, First Political Division and Mr. Saed Abdul Bashir Sadaat, Deputy Spokesman, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan.

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Sri Lanka – Australia Bilateral Relations Scale New Heights

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External Affairs Minister Prof. G.L. Peiris, held bilateral talks with his Australian counterpart Senator Bob Carr, on the evening of 16th December at the Ministry of External Affairs prior to the inauguration of the first meeting of the Joint Working Group on People Smuggling and Transnational Crime on 17th December at the Ministry of Defence and Urban Development. Minister of Foreign Affairs of Australia was on an official visit to Sri Lanka at the invitation of Prof. Peiris from 14th to 17th December 2012.

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