Minister of Foreign Affairs Ali Sabry held a briefing on current developments in Sri Lanka for the Colombo-based diplomatic corps on Wednesday, 16 August 2023. Foreign Secretary Aruni Wijewardane was also associated with the briefing.
At the outset, Foreign Minister Sabry said that the meeting was a continuation of regular briefings organized by the Ministry to share information on current developments in the country. The Minister outlined key developments including recent financial stabilization measures, steps taken towards economic recovery and growth, legislative reforms including the adoption of the anti-corruption bill, proposed truth-seeking mechanism and the proposed anti-terrorism bill. The Minister highlighted the salient points of the President’s statement in Parliament on 9 August 2023 on the 13th Amendment to the Constitution and also provided a summary of the progress made under the ongoing reconciliation endeavours and the work being carried out by the independent mechanisms.
Foreign Secretary Aruni Wijewardane outlined Sri Lanka’s ongoing participation in multilateral fora including Sri Lanka’s constructive engagement at the 4th Cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), review of Sri Lanka’s Report under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and Sri Lanka’s continued engagement with the United Nations including Sri Lanka’s participation in the upcoming 54th session of the Human Rights Council and in the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly in September 2023. The Foreign Secretary also highlighted the upcoming Fifth Forum of Ministers of Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific which will be held in Colombo from 3 to 6 October 2023 and the upcoming IORA Ministerial Meeting scheduled to be held on 11 October 2023 where Sri Lanka will assume the chairmanship of the organization from 2023-2025.
Presentations on the progress of domestic institutions were made by: Chairperson of the Office for Reparations (OR) Dhara Wijayatilake, Chairperson of the Office on Missing Persons (OMP) Mahesh Katulanda, Director General of the Office for National Unity and Reconciliation (ONUR) Deepthi Lamahewa, Director General of the Interim Secretariat of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Asanga Gunawansa, and the Director General of the Office for Overseas Sri Lankan Affairs (OOSLA) V. Krishnamoorthy. Additional Secretary of the Presidential Secretariat Chandima Wickramasinghe provided an update on the implementation of Sri Lanka’s National Action Plan on Women, Peace and Security.
High Commissioners and Ambassadors of the Diplomatic Missions and the United Nations based in Colombo participated.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
17 August 2023