Latest Home Office guidance on visa extensions and new health measures at the UK border

The UK Home Office has published the latest guidance about visa extensions for persons in the UK with leave expiring between 24 January and 31 July 2020 and new health measures at the UK border which are due to be implemented on 8 June 2020.

Visa extensions:

UK visa holders in the UK with leave expiring before 31 July 2020 are now able to extend their visas to 31 July 2020. This builds on the previous extension which lasted until 31 May 2020. For those who have already had their leave extended to 31 May no further action is required, their leave will be automatically extended.

The UK Home Office has announced that while this extension has been offered to help those who are unable to return to their home countries prior to 31 July, those currently in the UK on temporary visas, such as visitor visas, should return home as soon as it is safe and possible to do so.

Entering the UK:

All arriving passengers will be required to fill in a contact locator form to provide contact and travel information so they can be contacted if they, or someone they may have been in contact with develops the disease.

Border Force officers will undertake spot checks at the border. Those found not to have completed the online form will be asked to. If they refuse, they may receive a Fixed Penalty Notice of £100 in England.

The UK Government will also require all those entering the UK, who are not on an approved list of exemptions, to self-isolate in their accommodation for fourteen days from arrival into the UK.

 

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Notice

We wish to inform the public that our 24 hour hotlines +447448063261 and +447466770612 and the telephone number +447424162500 introduced for emergency consular assistance will cease to function from Monday, 18 May 2020.

Our general telephone number +44 2072621841 is now functional and the public is requested to use this number to contatct us.

Special request by the Government to Sri Lankan expatriates

The Government of Sri Lanka urges the Sri Lankan expatriates who wish to return to their Motherland from abroad to safely remain where they are now until the risk of COVID – 19 virus is minimized.

The Government has taken several effective initiatives to prevent the spread of the pathogen. In order to stop the virus coming into the country and its spread, the Government had completely banned passenger arrivals from overseas.

The Government has announced that the requests made by Sri Lankans  overseas to return will be considered after containing the disease in the country.

Therefore, the Additional Secretary to the President on Foreign Relations, Admiral Jayanath Colombage requests all Sri Lankans who wish to return, to stay safely where they are at present while sharing their information with the Sri Lankan Mission or Consulate General offices in their respective countries.

The Media Release issued by the President’s Media Division

Foreign Ministry Launches ‘Contact Sri Lanka’-Online Portal for Overseas Sri Lankans

‘Contact Sri Lanka’ an online portal jointly created by the Ministry of Foreign Relations and Information & Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) for the benefit of Overseas Sri Lankans was launched on 26 March 2020. The portal can be accessed at www.contactsrilanka.mfa.gov.lk.

Establishment  of the portal, is pursuant to the call made by  President Gotabaya Rajapaksa for coordinated efforts by all Government stakeholders to fight the COVID-19 outbreak and to harness digital technology to prompt faster and more efficient service delivery.

All Sri Lankans living abroad are invited to register voluntarily on the platform’s basic functionalities allowing the Government of Sri Lanka to reach out and provide assistance during emergencies such as the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Portal offers user friendly registration creating a profile or using any existing email logins. Registered users are able to request assistance from the Foreign Relations Ministry by filling a simple form.

In the long term, the Portal will be expanded and is expected to serve as an official source of information and facilitate Overseas Sri Lankans in obtaining  a wider range of digital services offered by the Government.

For easy facilitation, the portal also includes a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) which will serve as a guideline for generic queries. This user friendly platform can be easily navigated via the internet, on any browser or interface and can be accessed by all  registered users to direct  a query or request assistance, even from a mobile phone.

The data provided through this portal is protected to ensure the  privacy of Overseas Sri Lankans and will not be shared  without the consent of the users.

The Media Release issued on 26 March 2020 by the Ministry of Foreign Relations on the launch of the ‘Contact Sri Lanka’ Portal. 

Sri Lanka seeks assistance in preventing violent extremism

 Sri Lanka has sought expertise in preventing violent extremism (PVE) from the Global Community Engagement & Resilience Fund (GCERF), in the post Easter Sunday scenario where violent extremism has become the biggest threat to national security. At the invitation of the Foreign Ministry, the Executive Director of GCERF, Dr. Khalid Koser was in Sri Lanka from 27 – 30 August, and met with political leaders, senior officials and other stakeholders with a view to ascertain possible programmes for GCERF assistance.

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