The High Commissioner Chitranganee Wagiswara hosted a Dinner Meeting at the Official Residence to welcome the Members of the reconstituted Canada-SriLanka Parliamentary Friendship Group.
A Group of Canadian Parliamentarians elected a new Committee with Conservative Parliamentarian Corneliu Chisu as the Chair, and Parliamentarian Joe Daniel and Senator Salama Ataullajan as two Vice Chairs. 11 Members were also elected to the Executive Committee.
The High Commissioner while welcoming the Chair and the Committee Members of the Group said that she is happy to see Hon. Deepak Obhrai, MP and Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs (Deputy Minister) at the meeting who is also a member of the Group.
While stating that a Friendship Group in the Canadian legislature can play an important role in fostering Canada-Sri Lanka bilateral relations, the High Commissioner referred to the counterpart Friendship Group in the Sri Lanka Parliament which comprises a considerable number of Parliamentarians. It was emphasized that parliamentarians represent the people, and therefore in a better position to build greater understanding and friendship between its people and the two countries. The Members were also briefed on post conflict developments in Sri Lanka and the need to look at the future potential and opportunities especially in the trade and economic field.
Mr. Chisu the Chair said that the Group looks forward to working closely with the High Commission in order to serve as a link between Canada and Sri Lanka Parliamentarians to promote multicultural values in the two countries. He also spoke of the importance of the role that the Diaspora could play in the fields of rebuilding and reconciliation in Sri Lanka.
A lively discussion continued during the dinner where the Parliamentarians, the Canadian Foreign Ministry officials and members of the Sri Lankan expatriates from the Sinhala and Tamil communities discussed diverse issues and topics pertaining to Canada-Sri Lanka relations.
Sri Lanka High Commission
25th March 2013