As a gesture of goodwill to support and appreciate the contribution being made by the National Health Service (NHS) UK which is at the frontline saving lives during the Covid-19 pandemic, a donation of Ceylon tea and disposable gloves to the staff of the NHS UK was made by Sri Lanka to coincide with the International Tea Day.
The Sri Lanka Tea Board and six leading tea producers in Sri Lanka, namely, Vintage Teas Ceylon Ltd, English Tea Shop, Tea Trends Export Ltd, Dilmah Ceylon Tea, Mlesna Ceylon Ltd, Stassen International Pvt Ltd, and manufacturer of disposal gloves Dipped Products Ltd of the Hayleys Group contributed to this generous donation.
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Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha has called on migrant workers as well as students and parents, to carefully calibrate the effect repatriation at this time could have on their jobs and education, before making decisions to seek to return to Sri Lanka, availing of the limited flights being operated by the Government for those facing compelling circumstances. He made this observation yesterday (16 May 2020) in an appearance on the ‘News at 9’ on Sri Lanka Rupavahini, where he noted that over 38,000 Sri Lankans are seeking to be repatriated, of that nearly 28,000 migrant workers. The comments made by the Secretary are below;
Priority right now of the Government following the Cabinet Paper presented by my Minister Dinesh Gunawardena two weeks ago, is to bring back the migrant worker category which needs to come, but more so in some cases have to come. Because they have gone out of status and are illegal, they also as a result of being illegal do not have access to the health facilities and anything else in those countries. There are many who have been thrown out of jobs. They are pretty much destitute. Thereafter we can consider those who want to come, but who have jobs and who simply want to come on holiday to avoid any Corona vulnerability. » Read more
The attention of the Ministry is drawn to a quiz titled “Travel quiz: do you know your islands, Man Friday?” published on the web edition of The Guardian newspaper in the United Kingdom on Friday, 15 May 2020. The second question reads -‘Eelam is an indigenous name for which popular holiday island?’
Among the answers to this question, Sri Lanka has been listed as one of the choices and when one selects Sri Lanka as the answer, whilst indicating it as the correct answer, a further description ‘the full name of the island’s recent military insurgency was LTTE – Liberation Tigers for Tamil Eelam’ appears.
The High Commissioner of Sri Lanka in the United Kingdom wrote to the Editor of the Guardian newspaper on the inaccuracy of this information requesting that the content be removed.
Ministry of Foreign Relations
16 May 2020
The Ministry of Foreign Relations handed over Rs. 27.7 million to President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Thursday (May 14th), raised through the network of Sri Lanka Missions overseas, to support COVID-19 Health Care and Social Security Fund.
Foreign Secretary Ravinatha Aryasinha handed over the cheque to the President, in the presence of the Minister of Foreign Relations Dinesh Gunawardena at the Presidential Secretariat.
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ශ්රී ලංකාවේ COVID-19 වෛරසය පැතිරීම පාලනය කිරීම සඳහා 2020 මාර්තු 18 වන දින කොළඹ ජාත්යන්තර ගුවන්තොටුපළ තාවකාලිකව වසා දැමීමටත්, ශ්රී ලාංකිකයන් ඇතුළු සියලුම මගීන්ගේ පැමිණීම තාවකාලිකව අත්හිටුවීමටත් තීරණය කිරීමෙන් අනතුරුව ශ්රී ලංකාවට පෙරලා යාමේ හැකියාව සම්බන්ධයෙන් විමසීම් විශාල ප්රමාණයක් එක්සත් රාජධානියේ අධ්යාපන කටයුතු වල නිරතව සිටින ශ්රී ලාංකික සිසුන්ගෙන්, එක්සත් රාජධානියේ සංචාරයේ යෙදී සිටින ශ්රී ලාංකිකයන්ගෙන් සහ වෙනත් අයවලුන්ගෙන් මෙම මහ කොමසාරිස් කාර්යාලයට මේ දිනවල නිතිපතා ලැබේ.
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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.
High Commission of Sri Lanka in London, in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Relations, the Presidential Secretariat and SriLankan Airlines repatriated the first group of Sri Lankan students in the UK who had registered with the High Commission expressing their desire to return to Sri Lanka in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic on 03 May 2020 by flight UL 504.
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