Sri Lanka High Commission in London hosts an inclusive Christmas celebration highlighting Christ’s Message of Peace

Acting High Commissioner of Sri Lanka High Commission to the UK Samantha Pathirana welcoming the gathering at the annual Christmas celebrations

The High Commission of Sri Lanka in the United Kingdom held its annual Christmas Celebrations at the High Commission premises on Monday 16 December 2019 with multi-faith leaders, representation from the Church of England and the British Government, and the British Sri Lankan community of all faiths.  The Head of South Asia Department and India Policy Co-ordinator of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Fergus Auld attended the event as the Chief Guest.

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‘Revitalized Africa Policy’ to guide Sri Lanka’s engagement with Africa

Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha has said the operationalization of the recently developed ‘RevitalizedAfrica Policy’, seeks to enhance Sri Lanka’s cooperation in the political, economic and cultural spheres across Africa. Among the envisaged measures for closer engagement are the expansion of Sri Lanka’s diplomatic presence in Africa, stronger and mutually productive economic collaboration, revitalization of the historic people to people linksand close cooperation in multilateral fora and regional organizations. The policy document aims to optimize the strategic linkages through proximity to the Indian Ocean, centrality of Sri Lanka’s location, and cooperation through the 54 member-African Union (AU), where Sri Lanka received Observer Status in 2014.

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Foreign Ministers of Sri Lanka and Switzerland exchange views on arrest of Sri Lankan employee of Swiss Mission

Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena this evening (18 December) received a telephone call from the Foreign Minister of Switzerland Ignazio Cassis regarding the status of the Sri Lankan employee at the Swiss Embassy Ms. Garnier Banister Francis. She is presently in custody on reasonable suspicion of committing offenses under Sections 120 and 190 of the Penal Code, that could justify a criminal charge of disaffection towards the government, and fabricating false evidence for the purpose of being used in any stage of a judicial proceeding, in her alleged abduction claim.

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Foreign Minister calls for concrete action on SAARC intra-regional trade

Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena requested the SAARC Member Countries to take concrete action to improve intra-trade in the region without compromising security concerns. He made this remark at an event to commemorate the 35th SAARC Charter Day at the Taj Samudra Hotel on 10 December 2019, organised by the SAARC Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry.

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Foreign Ministry Comments on the Judgement in the Case of Brigadier Priyanka Fernando

The judgement in the case of Majuran Sathananthan vs. Brigadier Andige Priyanka Indunil Fernando, the trial of which was completed at the Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 19 November 2019, was delivered by the Chief Magistrate of the Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 6 December 2019. The Chief Magistrate delivered the judgement under Section 4A of the Public Order Act of the UK and imposed a lower notional financial penalty, but did not consider it appropriate to issue a warrant. The Judge, who had previously ruled that the defendant was not protected by diplomatic immunity, did not revisit that ruling. She had also rejected the abuse of process argument.

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