Government has granted compensation to places of religious worship destroyed during the conflict period

slstatement forumonminorities 19march2014

Intervening in the 6th session of the Forum on Minority Issues at the 25th UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on 19th March 2014, Sri Lanka said that mindful of the many challenges after a three-decade long conflict that had taken its toll on the population of an entire country. We are seeking to address these challenges in line with the National Plan of Action for the Implementation of the Recommendations of the LLRC which contains many recommendations that seek to promote religious tolerance and inter-communal and inter-religious understanding, as well as to address grievances and grant redress to those whose rights have been violated on ethnic or religious grounds.


Sri Lanka details sequence of events leading to recent arrest and detentions in Killinochchi

rightofreply 18march2014

Exercising its Right of Reply on statements made regarding the arrest and detention of Ms. Balendran Jeyakumari and the detention of Mr. Ruki Fernando and Father Praveen, the Government of Sri Lanka detailed to the Human Rights Council today (18th March 2014), the sequence of events preceding this action. Sri Lanka said Ms. Jeyakumari was placed under arrest on suspicion of aiding and abetting K.P. Selvanayagam a.k.a. ‘Gobi’ who is believed to be leading the revival of the LTTE in Sri Lanka, while Mr. Fernando and Father Praveen have been detained as it has been revealed that they have been in Killinochchi engaging with persons connected to Gobi. Their questioning is continuing at present, to ascertain the whereabouts of Gobi and other related operatives.



Sri Lanka says promotion and protection of human rights must be based on the principles of cooperation and genuine dialogue

slstaement myanmar17march2014

Intervening in the interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar at the 25th UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on 17th March 2014, Sri Lanka reiterates its consistent position that any action taken in the promotion and protection of human rights of a country must have the consent of that country, and be based on the principles of cooperation and genuine dialogue, and on the founding principles of universality, impartiality, non-selectivity which govern the work of the Council. Sri Lanka also believes that the UPR mechanism is the appropriate platform to address the human rights situations of all countries in a uniform, objective and constructive spirit of engagement.


Sri Lanka reiterates need for country's consent for international action to protect human rights

slstatement Iran 17march2014

Sri Lanka intervening in the interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran at the 25th Session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva on 17 March 2014 said, the positive developments in the country as well as cooperation by the country of concern must be acknowledged.



Minister Samarasinghe says Sri Lanka’s Opposition to the Resolution was a fight on a matter of Principle

nam p1 13march2014

                                                                     nam p2 13march2014

Minister of Plantation Industries and Special Envoy of the President on Human Rights, Hon. Mahinda Samarasinghe has said Sri Lanka’s opposition to the Resolution being moved by the US, UK and a few other countries against Sri Lanka was a fight on a matter of principle and that Sri Lanka would not compromise on it. Noting that what is happening to Sri Lanka today, could happen to any other NAM country tomorrow, Minister Samarasinghe called upon all Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) member states to continue to show solidarity with Sri Lanka.


Sri Lanka says dialogue continues to ensure interfaith harmony and understanding

SLstatement religiousbelief 12march2014

Sri Lanka intervening during the 25th Session of the Human Rights Council under Agenda Item 3: Clustered ID with the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief and the Special Rapporteur on Counter - Terrorism on 12th March 2014, said the recent sporadic attacks on religious targets are isolated incidents and there is an attempt to portray such sporadic incidents targeting places of worship as a sign of religious hatred and intolerance.


Minister Peiris calls on President of UNHRC, Ndong Ella

honmea unhrcpresident 25hrc

External Affairs Minister and Leader of the Sri Lankan delegation to the UNHRC in Geneva, Prof. G.L. Peiris, called on Mr. Baudelaire Ndong Ella, the President of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

The discussion focused mainly on the procedures adopted by the Human Rights Council on Sri Lanka and the need to ensure a level playing field  in the dealings between the UNHRC and Sri Lanka.

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka

09 March 2014

49,488 houses have been constructed in the Northern and Eastern Provinces for the IDPs

slstatement rtfoodhousing 10march2014
Sri Lanka intervening during the 25th Session of the Human Rights Council in an ID with the Special Rapporteur on Right to Food and Special Rapporteur on Right to Adequate Housing on 10thMarch 2014, has said 49,488 houses have been constructed in the Northern and Eastern Provinces for the IDPs under the North East Housing Reconstruction Programme (NEHRP).

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka

10 March 2014


Ambassador Aryasinha says draft resolution of core group violates the constitutional provisions of Sri Lanka

informalp1 7mar2014

Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha, has said "the draft resolution on Sri Lanka deposited with the Human Rights Council by a core group comprising - the USA, UK, Mauritius, Montenegro and Macedonia, violates the constitutional provisions of Sri Lanka, is highly intrusive in nature and is in breach of the sovereignty of the Sri Lankan people and the territorial integrity of Sri Lanka". "In being politicised and in clear contravention of accepted principles of conduct in the Council", he said, "the resolution sets a bad precedent, and can in the medium-to-long term have an adverse impact on all developing countries in the Council".


Sri Lanka expresses reservations on attempts to politicise the situation of Sri Lanka in the Council

25hrc slstatement 7mar2014
Sri Lanka has expresses its strong reservations on the misplaced reference in the Annual Report to the Secretary General’s Internal Review Panel (IRP) report on Sri Lanka including provision of link to the report in a footnote, in the context of prevention. We note however that the report relevant to the subject at hand is ‘the Rights Up Front’ plan of action, to which report, surprisingly, no such link is provided. The ‘Rights Up Front’ plan of action is not meant to be retroactive but forward looking. Regrettably, the misplaced attention paid to the IRP report, which is neither endorsed by the intergovernmental process nor based on credible sources and information, can only be construed as yet another attempt to politicise the situation of Sri Lanka in the Council.

Read the full statement

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka



Minister Peiris tells HC Pillay that the disproportionate negative attention is making the difficult task of reconciliation in Sri Lanka even harder

honmea unhc 6mar14

External Affairs Minister Prof. G. L. Peiris has said, the highly prejudiced actions taken by a few countries and the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to give disproportionate negative attention to Sri Lanka, has made the separatist Tamil elements in Sri Lanka and abroad more intransigent, making the intensely difficult task of reconciliation in Sri Lanka, even harder. He said it was unfortunate that Sri Lanka has become a “political football” in the electoral fortunes in some countries.


Minister Peiris rejects High Commissioner’s Report says those “those who exalt its virtues only seek to inflict harm on the reconciliation process”

hon mea 25hrc
Minister of External Affairs and Leader of the Sri Lanka delegation Prof. G.L. Peiris, delivering the National Statement at the High Level Segment of the 25th Session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva today (5 March 2014), rejected the Report of the High Commissioner in its entirety, saying it was fundamentally flawed and disregarded the substantial progress made by the Government during the five years which have elapsed since the end of the thirty year conflict against terrorism. He said it also pays scant regard to the complexities and local nuances of a sensitive reconciliation process, while eroding confidence of the people of Sri Lanka by the constant changing of unjustifiable demands. Moreover, they persist in an attitude which is clearly disproportionate to the circumstances and inconsistent with the treatment of comparable situations. It is much to be regretted that the High Commissioner’s Report and those who exalt its virtues only seek to inflict harm on the reconciliation process by bringing about a polarisation of the Sri Lankan society.


External Affairs Minister Peiris to address HRC High Level Segment on Wednesday

palais des nation

Minister of External Affairs, Prof. G.L. Peiris who leads the Sri Lanka delegation to the 25th Session of the Human Rights Council (HRC) arrives in Geneva on Tuesday (4 Match 2014), and is  scheduled to deliver the Sri Lanka National Statement at  the High Level Segment of the HRC on the morning of Wednesday.

The 3 day High Level Segment began today with statements by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, President of UN General Assembly John W. Ashe, President of Human Rights Council Baudelaire Ndong Ella, High Commissioner for Human Rights Ms. Navi Pillay, and the President of the Swiss Federation Didier Burkhalter. Foreign Ministers/Ministerial level heads of delegations participating in the Session will continue to address the meeting over the next 2 days.


Sri Lanka rejects High Commissioner Pillay's call "to establish an international inquiry mechanism"

HRC floor

The Government of Sri Lanka (GOSL) has rejected the call by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navnanethem Pillay's "to establish an international inquiry mechanism to further investigate the alleged violations of IHRL and IHL and monitor any domestic accountability process in Sri Lanka", saying "it gives scant or no regard to the domestic processes ongoing in Sri Lanka within the framework of the LLRC NPOA, and is politicized in premise". The government said, the trajectory that has emerged with regard to the recommendation of the High Commissioner "reflects the preconceived, politicized and prejudicial agenda which she has relentlessly pursued with regard to Sri Lanka", since just a week following the defeat of terrorism in Sri Lanka, on 26th May 2009 at the 11th Special Session of the UNHRC on Sri Lanka, and at subsequent sessions and reports. It is noted that the reference in the current report that “the High Commissioner remains convinced” for an “independent, international inquiry” demonstrates her persistent efforts against Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka said, "it is pertinent to question the factual basis for the High Commissioner’s initial formal call to the HRC for an independent, international investigation in May 2009 and its continuation, in order that the international community not be misled".


Pope Francis accepts invitation to visit Sri Lanka

His Holiness Pope Francis & His Eminence Malcom Cardinal Ranjith
His Holiness Pope Francis met Sri Lankans at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome in a special audience he offered to the migrant Sri Lankans living in Italy on 8 February 2014. Addressing the congregation of some 15,000 Sri Lankans at the invitation of His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, and referring to the invitation to visit Sri Lanka, Pope Francis said "I accept it and believe the Lord will give us this grace".


Sri Lankans in Geneva celebrate Independence Day

Statement made by Ambassador Aryasinha at Independence Day Celebrations 2014Religious Observance at Independence Day Celebrations 2014

The Sri Lankan community resident in Geneva and the environs came together on Saturday (1 February 2014) to celebrate Sri Lanka's 66th anniversary of independence at an event organised by the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the UN in Geneva at the ILO premises. With over 250 Sri Lankans under one roof, the event was testimony to the country's rich and multi-faceted heritage.



Sri Lanka says strong political will essential to achieve substantive progress at the IGC

WIPO  ICG 3feb2014WIPO  ICG 3feb2014-2


Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Ravinatha Aryasinha has stressed the need for strong political will to overcome the differences among Member States in order to reach a timely conclusion of a legally binding international instrument to protect Genetic Resources (GRs), Traditional Knowledge (TK) and Traditional Cultural Expressions (TCEs). Ambassador Aryasinha said such an instrument would prevent the misappropriation of intellectual property relating to GR, TK and TCEs in a fair and balanced manner, and offer the necessary protection to the human and natural resources that would bring considerable benefits to the people of the developing world. He underlined the need to strike the right balance between the rights of creators and holders of GRTKF on the one hand, as well as the interests of users on the other.


Secretary Weeratunga briefs Geneva diplomats on progress in national reconciliation

llrc brief p1 21jan2014

Secretary to the President Lalith Weeratunga who briefed Permanent Representatives to the United Nations in Geneva at the Palais des Nations on Tuesday (21st January 2014) on ‘Progress in the reconciliation process in Sri Lanka’, has said the Government of Sri Lanka has done all that was humanly possible to implement the recommendations of the National Plan of Action on the implementation of the LLRC, since its approval by the Cabinet of Ministers in July 2012.


Sri Lanka and the Philippines discuss collaboration between the Colombo Process and Abu Dhabi Dialogue

Colombo Process Manila Meeting -2014

Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion and Welfare Dilan Perera met with his counterpart, Secretary Labour and Employment Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz of the Philippines on Monday 6 January in Manila. The areas for collaboration discussed at the meeting included pre-departure orientation, qualification recognition process, comprehensive information orientation programmes and recruitment standards.

Minister Perera and Secretary Dimapilis-Baldoz met in their respective capacities as the current chairs-in-office of the two Regional Consultative Processes on the management of overseas employment and contractual labour in Asia, the Colombo Process and the Abu Dhabi Dialogue, respectively. Sri Lanka assumed the chair of the Colombo Process, comprising 11 countries of origin in Asia, last October in Geneva. CP comprises Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam, while ADD has a membership that includes all CP members, and additionally receiving countries Bahrain, Kuwait, Malaysia, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.


G-15 calls for fresh impetus for early conclusion of the DDA with a “development” -oriented outcome

Minister Industry-dec2013

The G-15, a Summit level Group of 17 developing countries currently chaired by Sri Lanka, in a Joint Statement  at the WTO’s 9th Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia on Thursday (5 December), called "for a fresh impetus for an early conclusion of the DDA with a development-oriented outcome and also emphasizes the importance of the accession to WTO by developing countries, particularly the LDCs".


G-15 emphasizes need to address international migration in a holistic and comprehensive manner

Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva and Chairman of the Personal Representatives of the Group of Fifteen (G-15) has said the group recognizes the need to address international migration in a holistic and comprehensive manner, premised on the developmental paradigm of migration that is sensitive to the national circumstances of countries of origin, transit and destination and one that seeks to maximize the mutually beneficial nature of international migration while reducing its negative effects. He said the G-15 was committed to work together at both the regional and international level for the protection of migrants, and believed that the IOM should continue to play a lead role in discussions relating to the post-2015 development agenda on issues concerning migration.

Ambassador Aryasinha made these observations when he delivered a joint statement at the 103rd Council of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) held in Geneva, on 28 November 2013, on behalf of G-15, a Summit Level Group of Developing Countries comprising 17 member States - Algeria, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Venezuela and Zimbabwe. 


SL to address regional mismatches on supply & demand in foreign employment throgh Colombo Process–Minister Dilan Perera


Minister of Foreign Employment Promotion & Welfare Dilan Perera has said Sri Lanka which recently assumed the Chairmanship of  the Colombo Process - the Regional Consultative Process on migration, will do its utmost to share its experience and bring together the eleven countries and nine observer countries of this group to address common interests, including the mismatches between supply and demand and applying ethical concepts to foreign employment management.  He said Sri Lanka will also play its full part in developing the post 2015 Millennium goal development architecture, emphasizing on Migration and Development. 


G15 calls for promotion of South-South Cooperation in the field of Intellectual Property

Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva and Chairman of the Personal Representatives of the Group of Fifteen (G-15), has urged WIPO to take measures to promote South-South Cooperation in the field of Intellectual Property for Development. He said that “WIPO should act as a catalyst to increase triangular cooperation between developing countries and LDC’s, through initiatives to identify best practices in the use of intellectual property for, inter alia, technology transfer, public health, food security, and other global challenges in which intellectual property has an important role to play".


Secretary Defence calls on Pope Francis

HS DS photo-21nov13

His Holiness Pope Francis received Secretary of Defence Gotabaya Rajapaksa at an audience in the Vatican on Wednesday. Mr. Rajapaksa who visited the Vatican as the Special Envoy of His Excellency the President, conveyed to Pope Francis an invitation from President Mahinda Rajapaksa to visit Sri Lanka in the near future.

During his visit, the Secretary also paid courtesy calls on dignitaries of the Vatican City State. Mr Rajapaksa appreciated efforts by the Holy See to promote world peace, disarmament, interfaith dialogue and dialogue among civilisations. He said that as a nation that has been blessed with a multi-ethnic, multi-religious and multi-cultural social fabric, and more importantly as a country that was coming out of a long period of conflict, Sri Lanka valued the strength that comes from the unity of the diverse communities in Sri Lanka. After almost thirty years of suffering, Sri Lanka had embarked upon a new era of development and reconciliation for all its people and looked upon the international community for encouragement and support.


Sri Lanka in focus at UN Women’s Guild Bazaar in Geneva

Sri Lanka counter at the UN Bazaar 2013
Sri Lanka’s renowned tourist attractions and its finest teas were in focus at the National Stall set by the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, Geneva at the United Nations Women’s Guild Bazaar held on Tuesday, 19 November 2013 at the Palais des Nations.  Organized by  the United Nations Women’s Guild and Permanent Missions accredited to the United Nations in Geneva, over the years the UNWG Bazaar has become a premier event in the UN calendar, with more than 150 country’s National stalls which attracting close upon 6,000 visitors.


WIPO and Sri Lanka to initiate a 10 Point Action Plan on Intellectual Property

18 nov 2013 dg visit sl

Dr. Francis Gurry, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) based in Geneva, who was in Colombo on a three day visit from 5-7 November 2013, said that WIPO and Sri Lanka are working out a 10-Point Action Plan towards strengthening the Intellectual Property Regime (IPR) in the country. He acknowledged that Sri Lanka could accrue many benefits through greater focus on Intellectual Property (IP) and also noted that in a highly competitive world and a global marketplace, proper IPR safeguards need to be in place. Dr. Francis Gurry made these observations at the media briefing held in Colombo at the end of his visit to Sri Lanka. 

As a colleague of the late former Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar, Dr. Gurry was in Colombo, invited by Ms. Sugandhi Kadirgamar in early 2013, to deliver the Lakshman Kadirgamar Memorial Oration 2013, organized by the Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute for International Relations and Strategic Studies. 


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