Sri Lanka address Third Session of the Open-ended IWG on a Draft UN Declaration on the Right to Peace

Sri Lanka addressed Third Session of the Open-ended Intergovernmental Working Group on a Draft United Nation Declaration on the Right to Peace held during 20 – 24 April 2015 in Geneva.

Full Statement

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka
Geneva

27 April 2015

WIPO assures support in orienting Sri Lanka towards a knowledge and innovation economy

Secretary of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce Mr. S.S. Miyanawala, addresses the 15th Session of the Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) held 20-24 April 2015.


The Director General of the Geneva based World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Dr. Francis Gurry, has assured support to the government's policy of orienting Sri Lanka towards a knowledge and innovation economy. Recalling his visit to Colombo in November 2013 when a 10 Point Action Plan was developed to strengthen IP related activity in the country and cooperation between Sri Lanka and the WIPO, Dr. Gurry commended the progress already made under this programme, and discussed modalities to further assist Sri Lanka.

Dr. Gurry made these observations when Secretary of the Ministry of Industry and Commerce Mr. S.S. Miyanawala met him on the sidelines of the 15th Session of the Committee on Development and Intellectual Property (CDIP) held 20-24 April 2015. Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization Ambassador Nimal Karunatilake and Second Secretary Dilini Gunasekera were associated in the discussion.

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Sri Lanka cautions that autonomous weapons could compel states to abandon restraint and ignite an arms race

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Sri Lanka has cautioned that "the possession of autonomous weapons by some States, combined with their possible asymmetric usages in war, may compel other States to also abandon their policies of restraint or moratorium and ignite an arms race". It has been noted that "the experience in nuclear weapons provides a useful lesson for all of us to understand the consequences of such an arm race, where even today possession itself has continued to remain a threat to regional as well as global security.

Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the UN in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha, made these observations during an intervention by Sri Lanka at the Meeting of Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS), held within the framework of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) from 13-17 April 2015 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. Second Secretary Mafusa Lafir participated in the deliberations. Earlier on Monday, Ambassador Aryasinha opened the week long meeting in his capacity as the Chair – Designate of the CCW for 2015.

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Ambassador Aryasinha opens the 2015 Meeting of Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS)

ccw meeting 13april2015

Sri Lanka's Ambassador to the UN in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha, in his capacity as the Chair – Designate of the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons (CCW) for 2015, opened the week long 'Meeting of Experts on Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems (LAWS)', held within the framework of the CCW on Monday (13th April) at the Palais des Nations in Geneva. The Convention, which 120 States are party to, seeks to ban or restrict the use of specific types of weapons that are considered to cause unnecessary or unjustifiable suffering to combatants or to affect civilians indiscriminately.

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Ambassador Aryasinha speaks on "The Role of Women in Peace-building: a Sri Lankan perspective"

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Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha on 2 April 2015 addressed the first in the 'Ambassador’s Luncheon Series', on "The Role of Women in Peace-building: a Sri Lankan Perspective". The event which is a follow-up to the Geneva Peace Conference that was convened last year and focussed on Asian experiences of peace building, was co-organized by the Journalist and Writers Foundation (JWF), the Dialog Institute and Geneva Press Club. Mr. Subhas Gujadhur, Director of Universal Rights Group chaired the event.

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Sri Lanka concerned about spread of atrocities by Boko Haram

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Sri Lanka has expressed concern about the spread of atrocities by Boko Haram.  Intervening in the Special Session of the Human Rights Council held on 1st April 2015, Sri Lanka’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha said, having suffered at the hands of one of the world’s most ruthless terrorist organisations, Sri Lanka recognizes that the fight against terrorism required a holistic approach, and hoped the Special Session will propel nations into action. 
 

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Minister Amaratunga urges International Community to increase global cooperation in disaster manangement with developing countries

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Minister of Public Order, Disaster Management & Christian Affairs John Amaratunga led the Sri Lankan delegation to the Third UN Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction held 14 – 18 March 2015 in Sendai, Japan.

In his statement the Minister highlighting the common but differentiated principle at all levels of disaster risk reduction said Sri Lanka earnestly urges the international community to increase global cooperation and partnership with a view to transfer technological know-how, financial assistance and capacity building particularly for developing countries.

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Foreign Minister Samaraweera meets Foreign Minister of Germany

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Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Foreign Affairs, held bilateral discussions with  H.E. Dr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany, on 3rd  March 2015, on the sidelines of the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva.
 

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Foreign Minister Meets High Commissioner for Human Rights

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Foreign Affairs Minister Mangala Samaraweera who was in Geneva to participate in the High Level Segment of the 28th Session of the UN Human Rights Council on Monday, 2nd March 2015 met with UN High Commissioner for Human Rights  Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein.
 

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Foreign Minister addresses High-level Segment of HRC in Geneva

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Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mangala Samaraweera addressing the High Level segment on the opening day of the 28th Session of the UN Human Rights Council, on 2nd March 2015 in Geneva briefed the Council on developments in Sri Lanka following the presidential election on 8th January and the new Government taking office. The Minister noted the Government was committed to engage and work in cooperation with a range of international organisations and countries and seek solutions to issues through dialogue, cooperation, understanding and learning.

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Foreign Minister Samaraweera meets Foreign Minister of Maldives

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Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Foreign Affairs, held bilateral discussions with H.E. Ms Dunya Maumoon Minister of Foreign Affairs of Maldives, on 2nd March 2015, on the sidelines of the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva.
 

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Foreign Minister Samaraweera meets Foreign Minister of Nepal

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Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Foreign Affairs, held bilateral discussions with H.E. Mr. Mahendra Bahadur Pandey Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nepal, on 2nd March 2015, on the sidelines of the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva. 
 

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Foreign Minister Samaraweera meets Foreign Minister of Sweden

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Hon. Mangala Samaraweera, Minister of Foreign Affairs, held bilateral discussions with H.E. Ms Margot Wallström Minister of Foreign Affairs of Sweden on 2nd March 2015, on the sidelines of the 28th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva. 
 

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The consistent Free Health Policy of Sri Lanka sets an effective and successful model for Developing Countries

Sri Lanka highlighted the notable achievements in its free health care sector, including the draft policy on the National Medicinal Drug Devises and Cosmetic Authority which the Cabinet of Ministers approved recently. 
 
Representing  Sri Lanka, Second Secretary Ms. Dilini Gunasekera speaking at the Human Rights Council  Social Forum on “Access to medicines in the context of the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, including best practices in this regard” held between 18 – 20 February 2015, noted that the persistent commitment at all levels including the highest policy level, demonstrated by Sri Lanka, could be considered as an effective and successful model for developing countries in terms of best practices.
 

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Sri Lanka calls for greater pace in the Working Group on Right to Development

Intervening at the Informal inter-sessional meeting of the Working Group on the Right to Development held from 16 – 17 February 2015 in Geneva, 
Sri Lanka expressed concern at the slow pace of progress in the Working Group on Right to Development and expected that the new framework to be presented by the Chairperson-Rapporteur will not only contribute to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the Working Group but also provide a new roadmap for this Working Group to achieve early completion of its mandate.
 

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Ambassador Aryasinha calls on expatriate Sri Lankans and organizations to help in making the 'Declaration of Peace' pledge a reality abroad in practical ways

National Day celebrated in Geneca 2015

Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha has said the special 'Declaration of Peace' pledge made at this year’s Independence Day celebration in Sri Lanka was an important reminder of the concerted efforts being made in the country to seek reconciliation and to ensure that we do not repeat mistakes of the past. He said the challenge before expatriate Sri Lankans, was to consider ways and means of making the 'Declaration of Peace' pledge a reality abroad in practical ways. He particularly urged Sri Lanka related organizations abroad, to play a catalytic role in furthering the objectives of unity, amity and reconciliation contained in the 'Declaration of Peace' in all their work.  

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Senior Advisor Jayantha Dhanapala meets with High Commissioner for Human Rights and Members of the Human Rights Council

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Mr. Jayantha Dhanapala, Senior Advisor on Foreign Affairs to the President of Sri Lanka visited Geneva from 27th – 29th January 2015.

He met the High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, President of the Human Rights Council Joachim Rücker, as well as all members of the Human Rights Council in Groups.

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Buddhist Centre opened in the “House of Religion” in Bern

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The ceremonial opening of the Buddhist Centre in the “House of Religion” in Bern , Switzerland was held on 14th December 2014, following the opening of the “House of Religion”, which is an intercultural and interreligious centre accommodating places of worships for number of other religions including Hinduism, Islam, Christianity, etc. 


The Buddhist Centre will provide an opportunity to the followers as well as the community interested in Buddhism to exchange their views on Buddhism, engage in Dhamma discourse and to practise meditation.

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"Global South must reflect on 'how' development is done,not just 'what' is done"- Ambassador Aryasinha

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Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha has said, in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Global South must continue to reflect on 'how' development is done, not just 'what' is done.

He made this observation, when in his capacity as and Chairman of the Personal Representatives of G-15 , together with Executive Director of the South Centre Dr. Martin Khor, he initiated a joint consultation by the South Centre and the Group of Fifteen (G-15) on 'The state of play of the Post-2015 Development Agenda and potential opportunities for the Global South'.

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Sri Lanka pledged a voluntary contribution of 10,000 US$ towards the UNHCR Global Appeal 2015

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Sri Lanka pledged a voluntary contribution of 10,000 US$ towards the UNHCR Global Appeal 2015 at the UNHCR Pledging Conference held on 09th December 2015. The Global Appeal 2015 Update by the UNHCR presented the financial resources that will be required in 2015 which amounts to US $ 6.23 Billion, to protect and improve the lives of millions of people, including, refugees, internally displaced people, returnees, stateless people, and others of concern.
 
Addressing the UNHCR Pledging Conference, Ambassador Aryasinha appreciated the assistance extended by UNHCR to Sri Lanka in a number of occasions, especially under the post-conflict resettlement programme; in terms of the provision of shelter grants and basic household items for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) and during the Tsunami in 2004. 
 

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Ambassador Aryasinha meets with Secretary for Relations with States of the Vatican Archbishop Dominique Mamberti

holysee lunch bern 6dec2014

Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha met Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, the Secretary for Relations with States of the Holy See at a luncheon meeting on 6th December 2014 in Bern. The luncheon meeting was organized by Monsignor Diego Causero, Ambassador of Holy See in Bern for diplomats accredited to the Holysee, on the occasion of Archbishop Mamberti’s visit to Switzerland. 
 
At the meeting Ambassador Aryasinha updated Archbishop Mamberti on the arrangements for the visit of His Holiness Pope Francis to Sri Lanka in January 2015. They were confident that the visit will further strengthen ties between Sri Lanka and the Holy See.    
 

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Sri Lanka says concerted and sustained efforts are needed to eliminate obstacles to the realization of the right to development

Sri Lanka said “while there needs to be commitment at both national and international levels to achieve full realization of the right to development, effective international cooperation is essential to create a conducive environment to the realization of the right to development.”

Intervening during a panel discussion on “Realizing a Vision for Transformative Development: Challenges and Paths to Progress” at the commemorative event “'Sustainable Development with Dignity and Justice for All' organized by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on the occasion of the 28th anniversary of the 1986 United Nations Declaration on the Right to Development, held on 2nd December 2014 at Palais des Nations in Geneva, Sri Lanka highlighted that concerted and sustained efforts are needed to eliminate obstacles to the realization of the right to development, such as unequal trade relations; unsustainable debt burdens; restrictions on technology transfer, labour flow and aid; and the democratic deficit in global governance; all of which exclude developing countries from full participation within the international decision making process. 

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Sri Lanka joins in measures to protect migrant workers at the Abu Dhabi Dialogue

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A series of initiatives aimed at boosting protection and improving conditions of employment for millions of foreign workers in the Gulf have been agreed upon at the Third Ministerial Consultative Meeting of the Abu Dhabi Dialogue (ADD) comprising Asian countries sending and receiving labour, which concluded in Kuwait last week. The 'Kuwait Declaration' noted that "recognizing that individual government's efforts may fall short, we resolve to work together to prevent and sanction exploitative recruitment practices that place workers at great risk and undermine fundamental rights".

Ministers and Heads of Delegations from Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Kuwait, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Vietnam attended this meeting, held on 26-27 November 2014 under the chairmanship of Kuwait. Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva Ravinatha Aryasinha led the Sri Lanka delegation.

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Sri Lanka maintains a human rights based approach towards its migrant workers with a comprehensive labour migration policy

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Sri Lanka stated that a comprehensive labour migration policy has been developed, with a view to managing labour migration properly and orderly and to ensure dignity, security and equity for Sri Lankan nationals seeking employment abroad. The Government of Sri Lanka has taken concerted efforts in several policy key areas, namely, improving recruitment practices and educating labour agents, pre-departure orientation, empowerment of those migrants who have re-entered the country, facilitating cheaper, faster, and safer transfer of remittances.
 
Sri Lanka’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva, Mrs. Samantha Jayasuriya made this statement at the 105th Council of the International Organization for Migration on 26th November 2014 in Geneva.
 

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The Group of Fifteen urges for a further political and public recognition of the positive contribution of migration to development

On 26 November 2014, during the 105th Session of the Council of the International Organization for Migration in Geneva, Ms. Samantha Jayasuriya, Chargé d’Affaires of the Sri Lanka Mission in Geneva delivered the Group of Fifteen’s (G-15) Joint Statement on behalf of Ambassador Ravinatha Aryasinha, Sri Lanka's Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva and Chairman of the Personal Representatives of the G-15. In the statement, she drew attention to the positive impact of international migration flows in the development of countries of origin, transit and destination. In addition, she highlighted international migration should be incorporated to the global economic discourse and development paradigm, given its cross-cutting and multidimensional reality involving all areas of human rights, labor, health, economy and education.

 

Press Release

Sri Lanka’s finest Tea at UN Bazaar

un bazaar 2014

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, 18 November 2014 at the Palais des Nations.

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