Sri Lanka ranks first among South Asian countries in the latest E-Government Development Index conducted by the United Nations.
“Sri Lankan government has made a substantial effort to develop its online portal which now ranks 74th in the world”, the UN said. Sri Lanka ranked 115 in 2012.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday appointed an Advisory Council to the Commission of Inquiry, extending the scope of the mandate of the commission. The Advisory Council comprises three legal luminaries. The Right Honourable Sir Desmond de Silva was appointed as the chairman of the council while Sir Geoffrey Nice, and Prof. David Crane are the members.
The Commission of Inquiry appointed vide Gazette Notification 1823/42 dated 15th August 2013 is mandated to inquire and report on the matters that have been referred in paragraph 4. 359 to in the Report of the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC).
The Government of Sri Lanka is deeply concerned at the recent escalating violence in Gaza, resulting in tragic loss of civilian lives and extensive damage to property. Cross border provocations on locations in parts of Israel also need to cease.
Sri Lanka calls upon the parties concerned to exercise utmost restraint in a bid to halt the violence and ensure a climate conducive to the recommencement of negotiations for a lasting solution to the conflict.Sri Lanka calls upon the parties to engage at the earliest in direct dialogue which is the only viable initiative for sustained peace and security in the region.
Making the biggest progress by a member country from its preceding ranking in the 2014 United Nations eGovernment Development Index (eGDI), Sri Lanka has advanced to the 74th position.
At the preceding survey determining the eGDI which was in 2012 Sri Lanka’s position out of 193 countries was 115. Thus the 2014 United Nations eGDI of Sri Lanka is a jump traversing 41 positions.
The rank reached by Sri Lanka out of 193 countries also places it within the first half of the highest ranked countries as well as the in the first position out of South Asian countries.
In a statement to mark the World Refugee Day the UNHCR has commended Sri Lankan government on the ‘great strides taken to reintegrate some 573,651 returning internally displaced persons since the end of civil conflict in 2009’.
It had also noted the role played by Sri Lanka on being a host country to populations that flee violence in the South Asian region.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa yesterday promised to take stern action against the perpetrators of the communal violence in Aluthgama and Beruwala.
After visiting the areas of Beruwala and Aluthgama affected by the clashes between two groups of people, the President, who just returned from the Bolivia visit, reiterated he will not allow anyone to take law into their hands. An impartial investigation will be conducted into the incident and will definitely bring all culprits to the book irrespective of race or religious differences.
President Mahinda Rajapaksa today called on the heads of state who are attending the fourth summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Shanghai to work collectively to create a peaceful and stable new Asia.
“Peace, security and stability are vital for progress and economic development in a nation or a region, as has been demonstrated by Sri Lanka, since eliminating terrorism. It is absolutely essential therefore, that we work collectively to create a peaceful and stable new Asia,” President Rajapaksa said addressing the Summit.
Minister of Health Maithripala Sirisena has been elected as one of the Vice Presidents of the World Health Assembly, the decision-making body of World Health Organisation (WHO).
Minister Sirisena is leading the Sri Lankan delegation currently attending the sixty-seventh session of the World Health Assembly (WHA) taking place in Geneva during 19–24 May 2014.
Sri Lankan society, nurtured by the teachings of the Buddha, and with expectations based in honoring his great teachings, strongly defend and respect the independence and dignity of others in the policies of State, President Mahinda Rajapaksa said.
In a message to mark the Vesak, the most revered religious occasion in the country, the President citing the words from the Dhammapada, said the teaching of the Buddha is the greatest message of peace to the world.
"We considered whether the Resolution on Sri Lanka moved in the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva would help Sri Lanka. We decided it will not. That is why we abstained when the vote was taken", said Mr. Seiji Kihara, Parliamentary Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan when he met President Mahinda Rajapaksa at Temple Trees yesterday (09). He is in the Island on an official visit.
Turning a new chapter in the history of Sri Lanka – Africa relations, the Commission of the African Union granted Sri Lanka Accreditation Status in the African Union (AU) with effect from April 2014 as a non-African State. Sri Lanka is the 3rd South Asian country along with India and Pakistan to have obtained Accreditation Status in the African Union. This new membership is a progressive reflection of the country’s new multifaceted Foreign Policy commitment of reenergizing its longstanding affinities with the African region.