Your Excellences and Distinguished participants,
Provision of water and sanitation services is one of the highest social priorities of Sri Lanka. Targets have been well set to achieve national and global goals. Sri Lanka has successfully mainstreamed SDG 6 the water sector and accordingly accelerated water and sanitation policies to reflect that water and sanitation are human rights. Having achieved MDG targets for water and sanitation well in time, we are now in a better position to achieve global goals in WASH even ahead of time.
Sri Lanka Government’s aim is to achieve SDG 6 targets for universal access to safely managed drinking water and sanitation by 2025. Our Government aims to mobilize efforts and resources to increase pipe borne portable water of the households by 2025 significantly.
The signing ceremony of the Joint Communiqué on establishing diplomatic relations between the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka and the Gabonese Republic was held today, 19 March 2021, at the Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in New York. On behalf of the respective Governments, the Joint Communiqué was signed by H.E. Mohan Pieris, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations and H.E. Michel Xavier Biang, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Gabonese Republic to the United Nations.
Statement made by H.E. Mohan Pieris, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations at the Side Event: "Violence against girl children in armed conflicts and the role of the international criminal justice system" on the occasion of the 65th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women - Invited by: Permanent Missions of Italy, Belgium, El Salvador and the European Union, in cooperation with the Office of the UN SRSG on CAAC and Save the Children
Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena stated that the present Government is committed to the development of the country while protecting the independent, sovereign, free and unitary state. He made these remarks while speaking at the opening ceremony of the Eastern Provincial Regional Consular Office of the Foreign Ministry in Trincomalee.
“The Governor has taken steps to provide equal rights to all the people of the country as a unitary state, including the North and the East. Thirty years of terrorism has disrupted life in these areas and development had declined. However, following the defeat of LTTE terrorism, steps were taken to develop these areas during the time of Former President Mahinda Rajapaksa. The people have not forgotten how the water supply system in the Muttur area was restored and how the service was provided to the people of this area by setting up a hospital in a ship received from the Italian government docked at the Trincomalee harbour during the tsunami disaster that befell on our country. The present government is resuming development activities that were started after the victory of the war and is working currently to improve the living standards of the people in this area. At that time, we solved the water problem in Trincomalee through the Kantale water supply scheme. Presently, our government is taking steps to provide the facilities available in Colombo to the villages as well. We all must work together to make the vision ‘Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour’ a reality and develop the country. The people know that under our government, we work to make all people be able to live happily. Our humanistic programme receives international support. We urge you not to act in a way that undermines that support. It is to develop this country that the majority of the people in this country have given us power and helped us to form a strong government in the last Presidential election as well as in the General election.”
There have been reports on social media platforms in regard to an invitation extended to the Foreign Minister of Myanmar to attend the 17th BIMSTEC Ministerial Meeting hosted virtually on 1st April 2021, in Colombo.
Sri Lanka as the Chair of the Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Cooperation (BIMSTEC) and the host of the Ministerial Meeting has invited all Member States (Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal and Thailand) to participate in the discussions in order to finalise documents of the 5th BIMSTEC Summit expected to be held later this year in Sri Lanka.
10 March 2021
‘ We owe a debt of gratitude to the women of the world’ - H.E. Mohan Pieris, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations at the Security Council Open Arria-formula Meeting - Call to Lead by Example: Ensuring the Full, Equal and Meaningful Participation of Women in UN-led Peace Processes Introduction – 08th March 2021
I thank the Permanent Representatives of Spain and Oman for the fine role that they are playing as co-facilitators of the Seventh Review of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy. I also wish to thank the United Nations Under-Secretary-General of the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism for the presentation on the comprehensive Report by the UN Secretary-General on the activities of the UN system in implementing the Strategy.
As we gather here today, in this Assembly Hall, and deliberate on this most important subject, I was wondering how many amongst us, would have personally experienced in some form or another the real horrible effects of terrorism. Some of us may have experienced it more than others. For some of our fellow citizens back at home, at one point in time it may have even become a way of life, as it might be the case even today for some of our Member States. The fear of getting on a public transport to get to work, the fear of sending your child to school, anxiously waiting for your loved ones to return home safely, the ability to go about your daily work without fear or anxiety is common in certain parts of our world, even as we speak.
Mr. President, when your fellow citizens are unable to lead their lives without the guarantee of their most fundamental rights, what is a responsible government constitutionally mandated to do? How should it respond? This was the dilemma facing the Government of Sri Lanka. For nearly 30 years we tried a cocktail of mechanisms from peace talks to ceasefires with the aid of our interlocutors, however the high price, to bring the group of non-state actors responsible for their extremely brutal terror tactics to the table, into the democratic fold. Regrettably all these efforts did not work. Innocent men, women and children continued to be terrorized, lost their lives and we witnessed the loss of public assets. Their distorted ideologies continued to incite hatred along ethnic lines even as I speak sitting in the comfort of jurisdictions outside. Finally, the Government had no choice but to carry out the humanitarian operation in 2009 that finally liberated the people of Sri Lanka from the clutches of that group of non-state actors.