The Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations hosted a simple ceremony to celebrate the Sinhala and Tamil New Year today (13th April). Diplomats and representatives from the Sri Lankan Community were in attendance. The ceremony commenced with the lighting of the oil lamp by the distinguished ambassadors present at the event. His Excellency Dr. Rohan Perera, Ambassador & Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, noted that this festival marks the advent of Spring and the end of the harvesting season. It was also a festival celebrated by both the Sinhalese in Tamils in Sri Lanka which signified the communities coming together to celebrate the commonalities in their traditions, thus being an occasion to unify the country after many years of conflict, he said. Following his remarks, the attendees enjoyed the traditional cuisine of the festival, including Milk Rice (Kiri Bath) and other sweetmeats.