On behalf of the President and Prime Minister, Government and people of Sri Lanka, Minister of Foreign Relations, Skills Development, Employment and Labour Relations Dinesh Gunawardena met the Ambassadors of Arab Countries based in Colombo at the Ministry of Foreign Relations, today, 8 June 2020 and expressed sincere gratitude through them to their respective Arab Governments for the support and solidarity given to the people and Government of Sri Lanka during this
- Sri Lanka is pleased to be among the founding members of the “Group of Friends on Combating Marine Plastic Pollution”. I wish to congratulate Norway, the Maldives and Antigua and Barbuda for this timely initiative and look forward to contributing to the Group’s efforts in the future, to achieve SDG 14.
Following the revised instructions issued on 4 June 2020 by the Presidential Secretariat on the PCR testing and quarantine procedures for the members of the Diplomatic corps based/attached in Colombo when they enter/re-enter Sri Lanka in order to prevent and minimize the risk of the spread of the Coronavirus, the Ministry of Foreign Relations, took immediate action to convey the same to all Diplomatic Missions, the Representation Offices of the United Nations and its Specialized Agencies, International Organizations, Honorary Consulates resident in Colombo through diplomatic channels.
By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan
The Ministry of Foreign Relations (MFR) is dealing with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic both within and outside Sri Lanka. Foreign Secretary, Ravinatha Aryasinha, took time off to explain how he and others have taken up the challenge to do their best.
He told Ceylon Today that the MFR has managed its affairs and not allowed any pressure to be placed on the Government on account of the present crisis. He said, "My colleagues in the MFR, the Sri Lanka Foreign Service officers and other Public Officials deployed in the Missions from Commerce, SLAS, Defence, Sri Lanka Bureau of Foreign Employment, etc., have performed their duties to the maximum extent possible within the limited resources and under trying circumstances."
Foreign Relations Minister Dinesh Gunawardena participated in a special radio discussion broadcast live on the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC) “Podu Jana Charitha” Programme on 30 May 2020 from 8.00 – 9.00 am
Foreign Relations, Skills Development, Employment and Labour Relations Minister Dinesh Gunawardena has reassured that the repatriation of migrant workers from the Middle East as well as other regions will continue, in a manner sensitive to the vulnerability of these communities, particularly those who have lost legal status and/or employment in their host countries. This will be done in consultation with the COVID Task Force, in view of the considerable strain presently placed on the health sector and quarantine centres following the increased number of COVID infected persons who have recently returned from Kuwait. It was noted that it is proposed to explore the possibility of getting PCR tests done prior to boarding all flights in future.
The Minister made these observations at a meeting held this evening (29 May 2020) at the Foreign Ministry attended by Foreign Secretary RavinathaAryasinha, Ministry of Skills Development, Employment and Labour Relations SecretarySarathAbeygunawardana, Chairman Sri Lankan Foreign Employment Bureau (SLBFE) Kamal Ratwatte, and relevant officials of the two ministries and the SLBFE.