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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2675

UN Day celebration highlights the important role of Sri Lankan People and Policies

Colombo, 25 October, (Asiantribune.com):

The 70th United Nations Day was celebrated under the patronage of the President of Sri Lanka, Maithripala Sirisena, and the Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe. Other dignitaries included the Speaker of Parliament, Karu Jayasuriya, Foreign Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, UN Assistant Secretary-General Miroslav Jen?a, Members of the Parliament, Heads of Diplomatic Missions, Civil Society representatives, Students and Staff of the UN Family.

The event was held yesterday at the United Nations Compound in Colombo, commenced following a minute of silence to honour Sri Lankan troops who laid their lives during UN Peacekeeping Operations.

2015 is a landmark year for the United Nations in Sri Lanka, as it is marks 70 years since the UN was founded on 24 October 1945, and 60 years since Sri Lanka became a UN Member State on 14 December 1955.

Celebrating these twin anniversaries and the mutually-beneficial Sri Lanka-UN partnership, the UN with the Government of Sri Lanka, jointly launched a media and communications outreach campaign titled, ‘Our UN. Apey UN. Engal UN’, a theme which was resonant at the UN Day celebrations.

Sri Lanka’s President acknowledged the long-standing Sri Lanka-UN Partnership, stating, “In our 60 year journey, many Sri Lankans have contributed to the work of the UN and its agencies including its norm setting process, peacekeeping and development work. At this historic juncture, I reaffirm Sri Lanka’s commitment to continue working with the UN for the benefit of our peoples.”

Highlighting Sri Lanka’s contribution to the UN system over the last 60 years, UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon, shared a congratulatory message: “Sri Lanka has contributed significantly to the work of the United Nations, from its peacekeeping operations to its specialized agencies, and Sri Lankan nationals have served with distinction in varied roles. I thank Sri Lanka for its efforts to help realize our shared goals, and I look forward to strengthening our partnership as we work together to overcome shared threats and seize shared opportunities.”

Commenting on the twin anniversaries, the Prime Minister stated, “As the UN marks its 70th anniversary this year, its membership must take stock of the achievements of the organization and deliberate meaningfully on collective approaches to adopt, to meet current and emerging challenges. Sri Lanka takes pride in her 60 year partnership with the United Nations and remains committed to cooperate with the UN and contribute to its work in all fields.”

The Foreign Minister, Mangala Samaraweera, noting Sri Lanka’s contribution, stated “Several Sri Lankans have held important professional positions in the UN including as Under-Secretaries-General. Just 5 years after joining the UN in 1955 Sri Lanka, then Ceylon, had the distinction of serving in the UN Security Council. Having held the Presidency of the General Assembly and chaired several international conferences, Sri Lanka’s contribution to the UN’s norm setting process has been significant.”

Addressing the gathering, UN Resident Coordinator in Sri Lanka Subinay Nandy said, “The United Nations and its country team are proud to have been a partner in supporting Sri Lanka achieve the high levels of socio-economic development that it enjoys today.” Speaking further Mr. Nandy, reiterated the “commitment of the United Nations system to supporting Sri Lanka to address the challenges, honouring the aspirations of the people of this beautiful country to a multi-ethnic, multi-religious and multi-cultural modern nation.”

At the event, President and the Prime Minister launched a Coffee-Table Publication, a Postage Stamp, a Video Documentary, and a Public Exhibition featuring Sri Lanka’s 60 year journey within the UN’s 70 years of existence. These were produced in partnership with the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Parliamentary Reforms and Mass Media, and Posts, Postal Services and Muslim Religious Affairs.

The exhibition, featuring a collection of photographs that share the Sri Lanka-UN Partnership, will be open for public viewing at the Arcade Independence Square from 26 October to 16 November 2015.

- Asian Tribune -

UN Day celebration highlights the important role of Sri Lankan People and Policies
UN Day celebration highlights the important role of Sri Lankan People and Policies
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