Kazakastan accorded the highest honor to Sri Lanka
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa was accorded with the military guard of honor on the second day of his state visit, i.e. on 20 November, when he visited the Kazakastan's President’s Palace at Astana.
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev received the Sri Lanka President at the entrance of the Presidential Palace, led the Sri Lankan President on the red carpet, where he was was accorded the highest military guard of honor.
Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to Russia, who is also accredited to Kazakastan Mr. U.Weeratunga told Asian Tribune that this time when the ceremonies were on, he saw more than 50 ambassadors and diplomats accredited to Kazakastan participating in the ceremony.
After the completion of the state visits formalities, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev were closeted for more than 20 minutes and they had the one to one meeting.
Following the one to one meeting, Sri Lankan side and the high powered Kazaks side started the bilateral talks. The bilateral talks continued for nearly 11/2 hours.
At the bilateral talks, both parties discussed about the possibility of increasing direct flights between the two countries to strengthen tourism flow in to Sri Lanka and open new avenues for trade and investments.
Attention was also drawn to setting up of factories to develop gem and graphite industries in Sri Lanka. with the help of Kazakh investors. President Nazarbayev said that he will support to organize Sri Lankan gem exhibitions in his country.
During discussions, Kazakhstan voiced interest in buying Ceylon tea, and Sri Lanka showed interest in purchasing gas and fuel from Kazakhstan.
President Nazarbayev also congratulated President Rajapaksa on the political and economic transformation that took place in Sri Lanka after the conflict.
Speaking on certain international pressures against Sri Lanka based on false allegations, President Nazarbayev assured President Rajapaksa that his country would stand by Sri Lanka.
Kazak President pointed out that a country should look for home grown solutions for its difficulties.
President Rajapaksa said that Sri Lanka will help Kazakhstan to obtain host status for the EXPO exhibition slated to be held in 2017.
Susequently, Sri Lankan and Kazakastan delegation signed bilateral agreements and one of those was about tourism.
On behalf of Kazakastan, the tourism agreement was signed by Tourism and Sports Minister Mr. Temirkhan Dosmukhambetov, and on behalf of Sri Lanka, Ambasador Mr. U Weeatunga signed.
In the last elections for the vacant seats to the UN Human Rights Council, Kazakastan was elected as a member for the next three years.
Kazakastan President Nursultan Nazarbayev told the Sri Lankan delegation that, “I have already instructed our country’s diplomats that every time, you must all help Sri Lanka, my friends. “ He told the Sri Lankan delegation that they need not worry from now on, “we are friends”.
Kazakastan President also invited Sri Lanka to join as a full member country of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA).
Sri Lanka President invited Kazakastan President Nursultan Nazarbayev to visit Sri Lanka and the invitation was accepted, but dates and other details are yet to be arranged.
Following the conclusion of the bilateral discussions, Sri Lanka delegation was invited for a working lunch.
At 4 PM, the Speaker of the Kazakastan Senate Kairat Mami met the Sri Lankan President at the hotel and Mahinda Rajapaksa invited a joint parliamentary delegation of Kazakastan to visit Sri Lanka.
At 5 PM the Kazakastan Prime Minister Serik Akhmetov made a courtesy call on the Sri Lankan President at the hotel.
Earlier at 3,30 PM the business Forum discussion commenced and after 5.30 PM Prime Minister of Kazakastan and Sri Lankan President participated in the Business Forum.
- Asian Tribune